There are a few different options that are often mentioned regarding Django and eCommerce services. I could have rolled my own but I’m trying to get better about giving previously built and tested libraries more of a chance before doing so.

After some research, I decided to give Satchmo a try for a shopping cart front. While I did come across some newer projects like Satchless, I wanted to see what the most popular one was up to. Satchmo was the most talked about and came up the most in conversations so I decided to dive in. The Quick Start guide got me most of the way there but I did hit a couple of hiccups that I thought I’d share with everyone.

First off, make sure you run everything in sudo.

My first step I didn’t read that Mercurial had to be installed. So if you miss that and get something like:

randomdrake:~$ sudo pip install -e hg+
Obtaining satchmo from hg+
  Cloning hg to ./src/satchmo
Cannot find command 'hg'
Storing complete log in /home/randomdrake/.pip/pip.log

Just run:

sudo apt-get install mercurial

Once I got things installed, I wanted to dive right in and start configuring things. With the project cloned, I fired up the server with a python runserver and hopped over to I was a bit disappointed to see that the text input box doesn’t properly fit on the default index page. Maybe that should be fixed somewhere?

But, no matter. I wasn’t after the design, I wanted the structure to build on top of. After clicking around for a bit, I thought it would be easy to find the template files and start to understand how the default page is done. Turns out I was a bit wrong. I started to browse through the source that gets installed by default for you. You can find it here:


After digging around for a little while and doing some finds, I decided to ask the Googles and see what I could come up with. Fortunately I found a little note in the Wiki that explained where I could start looking with a bit more clarity. So, to get rolling I hopped in the base.html file that is located here:


I simply copied this file into my local application’s /store/templates/shop/ directory and I was able to start hacking around on the layout.

Now that I had direct access to modifying the default template, I wanted to get it running in PostgreSQL. We can see, by default, it is setup to run in a SQLite database by looking in our /project/store/ file:

    'default': {
        # The last part of ENGINE is 'postgresql_psycopg2', 'mysql', 'sqlite3' or 'ado_mssql'.
        'ENGINE': 'django.db.backends.sqlite3',
        'NAME': os.path.join(DIRNAME, 'simple.db'),  # Or path to database file if using sqlite3
        #'USER': '',             # Not used with sqlite3.
        #'PASSWORD': '',         # Not used with sqlite3.
        'HOST': '',             # Set to empty string for localhost. Not used with sqlite3.
        'PORT': '',             # Set to empty string for default. Not used with sqlite3.

After creating a new database and database user on my local machine, I simply filled the the values and ran the following:

python syncdb

A quick visit to my local host and I could see everything was working splendidly. I didn’t have any of the sample data to get in the way and I could simply start going through and creating my site completely from scratch. Just what I was looking for.

Hopefully you found this guide helpful to getting you up and running with Satchmo. If you liked this post, please follow me @randomdrake or consider following my feed.