CS-Cart Ultimate Edition: New Details

Today I would like to provide some additional information about CS-Cart Ultimate (formerly known as Multi-Store), the biggest and the most sophisticated edition we are going to release soon.

Its core features have already been described in the post called Multi-Store Hits Beta. So, I tend not to repeat myself, but instead tell you more about the practical side: licensing, support and upgrading.
CS-Cart Ultimate Edition

Licensing

CS-Cart Ultimate provides an easy way to create and manage unlimited number of storefronts via a single back-end. That makes using of an ordinary CS-Cart license impossible. So we have made up a special flexible licensing system: there is a core license for an Ultimate installation itself and domain licenses for each store managed by it. A core license is just the right to have 1 software copy while its domain licenses specify the domain names (e.g. www.example.com) on which its storefronts are available. The number of domain licenses that can be attached to a core one is not limited.

The initial purchase of CS-Cart Ultimate includes a core license bundled with 2 domain licenses (a core license cannot be purchased without them). Additional domain licenses can be purchased anytime and in any number. Domain licenses cannot be rearranged between core licenses, so it will be required to select a core license for which a domain license is being purchased.

Support

Like all other commercial editions CS-Cart Ultimate comes with our in-house technical support service. Buying the first CS-Cart Ultimate license you have a choice of 30 support days or 80 support credits. An additional Ultimate core license (bundled with 2 domain licenses) will add 60 credits to your support account. Each additional domain license will give you 30 support credits. If you need more credits or would like to renew a support period, they can be purchased on our website.

Access to Upgrades

CS-Cart Ultimate comes with a year access to new versions and upgrades. Just to remind: a single Ultimate installation can handle unlimited number of storefronts, so an upgrade package will update them all. A storefront cannot be upgraded separately, because CS-Cart Ultimate source files (except templates) are common for all its storefronts.

After the first year the access to upgrades can be renewed (if required) for 1 year for a fee. An upgrade subscription plan is purchased only for a core license via our Customer Help Desk and its price depends on the number of associated domain licenses (no matter when they are bought). At this moment, it costs $39.50 per each domain license if the plan is purchased within a month upon termination. So, if you have a CS-Cart Ultimate installation with 3 storefronts, it will cost you $118.50 to renew a year upgrade subscription, which is 20% cheaper than the same subscription plan for 3 CS-Cart Professional installations.

Upgrade to Ultimate

Only CS-Cart Community and Professional installations can be upgraded (converted) to Ultimate Edition. There will be a special tool available for that some time after the CS-Cart Ultimate final release.

It will be possible to exchange a CS-Cart Professional licenses to Ultimate domain ones with no additional fee. If you have, say, 2 Professional licenses and bought CS-Cart Ultimate (with 2 domain licenses), you can convert the first ones and get a CS-Cart Ultimate with 4 storefronts. Of course, data from these 2 CS-Cart Professional installation can be imported as well.

The details on the possibility to exchange a Professional license to an Ultimate one will be announced later.

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15 Responses to “CS-Cart Ultimate Edition: New Details”

  1. Riika Magnus says:

    Im really excited about most of what I just read, but I’m not happy to read about how updates are going to be charged. I don’t think it’s fair to charge seperate update fees for each domain license. You state that all stores have to be upgraded at the same time as they all share the same core files, so why would you charge per store if you have to upgrade all at once. It feels like a just another way for you to dig at our pocketbooks a little more. I think you should charge a flat rate for future upgrades, reguardless of how many domain licenses you have since what we are really updating is the core.

    • Hi Riika,

      Thanks for the good question. I must agree that an upgrade charge per license may seem illogical.

      But you should compare CS-Cart Ultimate fees with the ones of Professional Edition. If you would like to run 3 online stores, you have a choice between these CS-Cart editions, because their functionality is the same, but CS-Cart Ultimate allows you to do it using a single software installation (that is more convenient, saves your time, etc). Then, a CS-Cart Ultimate domain license is cheaper than the one of CS-Cart Professional – $195 vs $295 (first) / $235 (additional). Finally, the update fee of an Ultimate domain license is cheaper by 20% as you could read in the article. In other words, CS-Cart Ultimate is an alternative of numerous CS-Cart Professional installations, so CS-Cart Ultimate cannot be cheaper by several times.

      As for upgrading CS-Cart Ultimate, yes, the PHP files are common for all the stores, but there are separate template directories for each storefront and they are upgraded one by one (no difference if you have to upgrade several separate CS-Cart Professional installations – it will take just a few clicks. The main issue is whether your PHP files and Smarty templates are customized or not).

      I hope I have answered your question.

  2. Jeff Mottle says:

    I have a few questions about the upgrade process, functionality and the cost. I have to admit I am completely confused with the actual costs involved to transition. I have two stores store.shop1.com and store.shop.com. Both live on the same server and have near identical content, but the front end templates are different. Here are my questions:

    1) Does your upgrade script automatically find both stores and somehow merge them? Can you explain in detail exactly how the upgrade physically alters the existing stores, files and databases?

    2) We have A LOT of very large digital download products (100MB to 1GB) and the main issue we have now is two stores consume double the storage space due to the inability of the two stores to share common digital download files. My assumption with the new Ultimate version is this will be remedied as the products are in common in all stores? Does this also apply to the physical digital downloads? Likewise does it apply to the product files (manuals, brochures etc that are accessible from the user side of the product.

    3) Right now we are VERY short on drive space on our server, so can you please elaborate on the upgrade process. What would be very problematic is if all of the digital downloads were duplicated again during the upgrade process as we could not have enough space. As it is we take up around 100GB of digital download files. How are duplicate products merged from the two Pro stores into Ultimate? Because they are nearly identical now, would it be possible to just use one store as the base for all products and then just copy across the template from the second store so we have two different front ends and the same backend for all products and physical files.

    4) How much would it cost for me to upgrade with this pre-sale promo if I have two Pro stores that I want to merge to Ultimate.

    • Jeff Mottle says:

      Any reply on this, the promo is going to end and I’d like to know if we should purchase.

      Thanks!

    • Hello Jeff,

      Sorry for the delay. Here are the answers to your questions:
      1) The way the actual upgrade will be performed is not yet defined, this may will be a special script or a function in the admin panel, but as for now there’s unfortunately not much more to tell.
      2) Yes your database could be (if necessary) shared between several storefronts, that is products will be able to be common in all stores. This surely applied to downloadable products as well – the same physical digital download data will not be duplicated in the filesystem, but shared instead.
      3) As mentioned before, no detailed technical information on Pro-to-Ultimate upgrades is available yet. Still, there is a possibility that we’ll release a special update package that will allow a CS-Cart Professional user to upgrade their software installation to Ultimate Edition so that it won’t involve any file duplication. That would be an ideal case in your situation. I mean, you will be able to upgrade your first store to CS-Cart Ultimate (I would like to repeat – only if we develop the appropriate update package) and create the second storefront in your new Ultimate installation manually, then manage and share the necessary digital products. So, your idea is correct.
      4) The upgrade price in your case will be $300; that is, you upgrade 1 of your Pro licenses to Ultimate Edition and just convert the other one to Ultimate storefront license for free. Note that the resulting Ultimate license package will contain 3 storefront licenses: 2 from your CS-Cart Professional licenses and another free one given with the upgrade.

      I hope the answers are clear and useful. In case of any further questions ask right away, I promise to give the answer faster than this time.

  3. Jasmine says:

    CS-Cart Ultimate looks pretty solid. Anyway, I am very much more interested in CS-Cart mall… any updates on the progress for this edition?

    • Hi Jasmine!

      I didn’t quiet understand, which edition you mean. If you are talking about so called CS-Cart Multi-Vendor Multi-Store, there’s no detailed information about it yet. All I can tell you is that it’s planned for development sometime in the future, but unfortunately nothing more particular at the time.
      Keep up with the updates here in the blog!

  4. Eugene Foux says:

    The question is about exchange of Professional licenses to an Ultimate one.

    I have 2 Professional licenses. How can i export (or transfer) the existing information from both of my licenses to one Ultimate?

    Your description is very unclear :
    “It will be possible to exchange a CS-Cart Professional licenses to Ultimate domain ones with no additional fee. If you have, say, 2 Professional licenses and bought CS-Cart Ultimate (with 2 domain licenses), you can convert the first ones and get a CS-Cart Ultimate with 4 storefronts. Of course, data from these 2 CS-Cart Professional installation can be imported as well.”

    It will be much better if you detailed describe the procedure and price of converting (exchanging, exporting) of 2 Professional Licencies to one Ultimate Licence.

    Thank you.

    • Hello Eugene,

      Sorry for the unclear description! Let me try to clear it up for you.

      First of all, 1 Pro license can be converted to 1 Ultimate storefront (i.e. domain) license free of charge OR upgraded to an Ultimate license pack for an additional fee. In both cases your existing store data will be available in your new Ultimate store. In both cases your existing Professional license will become a storefront one in an Ultimate license pack. The difference is that upgrading from Pro to Ultimate will give you an admin (i.e. core) license and an extra storefront one as well. You can read more about upgrading from Pro to Ultimate in this post.

      The special Pro-to-Ultimate upgrade price is significantly lower than the pre-sale price for an Ultimate license pack (1 admin and 2 storefront licenses) – $300 vs. $495. So I would recommend you to pre-order a Pro-to-Ultimate upgrade for one of your Professional licenses instead of purchasing a separate Ultimate license pack. The second Pro license you own could be then converted to 1 Ultimate storefront license. So the result will be 1 CS-Cart Ultimate admin license with 3 storefront licenses (2 converted from your 2 Pro licenses and another one added with the edition upgrade).

      Secondly, speaking about the quote you mentioned:

      It will be possible to exchange a CS-Cart Professional licenses to Ultimate domain ones with no additional fee. If you have, say, 2 Professional licenses and bought CS-Cart Ultimate (with 2 domain licenses), you can convert the first ones and get a CS-Cart Ultimate with 4 storefronts. Of course, data from these 2 CS-Cart Professional installation can be imported as well.

      This description is correct, but it deals with license purchasing, not upgrading. An Ultimate license pack does indeed include 1 admin and 2 storefront licenses. Any Pro license can be converted to an Ultimate storefront one, and therefore extend an existing Ultimate bundle. So, yes, if you purchase an Ultimate license pack (1 admin + 2 storefront licenses) and convert each of your 2 Professional licenses to Ultimate storefront ones, you will be able to add those newly converted storefront licenses to the Ultimate license pack, which will have 2 + 2 = 4 storefronts. As I said before, the more preferable option for you is license upgrading instead of license purchasing.

      I hope it’s all clear for you now, but if there’s still anything needing explanation, don’t hesitate asking!

  5. Mike Martell says:

    How much will each additional domain license cost?

    Looks like the upgrade fee for each is $39.50 but I don’t see a price for the initial cost of each additional domain.

  6. PaulH says:

    I have a number of Pro licences and all of them have lifetime free upgrades. If I update some (or all) of these to the Ultimate edition, do I lose my lifetime free upgrades or can I continue to receive the free upgrades?

    • Hi Paul,

      Yes, unfortunately, you will lose lifetime free upgrades, because they are not available for new CS-Cart editions.

      You still get a year-long upgrades access for every new license for free.

  7. Sorin says:

    Hello,

    In this moment i have 3 professional license, how much i need to pay to buy/upgrade to ultimate version?

    • Hello Sorin,

      You could pre-order 1 Pro-to-Ultimate license upgrade for $355: you will get 1 admin license and 2 storefront licenses.

      Then convert the other 2 Pro licenses to other 2 Ultimate storefront licenses for free. You will be able to add these license to the prior created Ultimate license pack.

      If you do so, you will have 1 common admin panel and 4 storefronts under control, and the cost altogether will be $355.

      If there’s anything unclear, please ask!