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Lesson 9 Support and database software
Objective Assess support and database software requirements.

Support and Database Software

Installation of support software is vital to the successful development of an e-commerce site. The steps necessary in preparing for the installation and support of Web site development software are:
  1. Install the required operating system, including necessary service packs, hot fixes and upgrades.
  2. Set up the required Web server software. For example, Microsoft Site Server 3.0 E-Commerce Edition requires the full installation of the NT Option Pack, as well as Internet Explorer. This can be a time-consuming process.
  3. Install the necessary HTML and support files for the site.

Database and Payment Gateway Software

In addition to the actual Web server software, an e-commerce site requires database programs and special database programs and scripting interpreters that enable the Web server to connect to databases and work with forms clients send containing their orders.
An effective e-commerce site requires the use of database applications, such as Microsoft SQL Server, IBM's DB2, or Oracle 11g, to handle data storage chores. Each of these products has been customized for use in e-commerce. Also, an e-commerce site requires a specific payment gateway to authorize and process transactions.
Most popular programs such as IBM's Net.Commerce and InterShop's Enterprise Software contain payment gateways. These programs allow you to conduct secure transactions and engage in enterprise resource planning. SET is popular in Europe, but has not been adoped in the US, as of yet.

Customizing data structure

You might want to integrate an inventory management system with your e-commerce software. The result will be that every time a customer makes an order, your inventory will be updated as well. To make these sort of customizations, you will need the necessary programming skills such as Java, C++, and SQL to design the e-commerce software database structure for the database you are using (DB2, SQL Server, Oracle).
In the next lesson, you will learn about machine configurations.