CGI and Perl

MiniVend Package

MiniVend, a package available through the Perl CPAN, enables you to set up an electronic store easily. Mike Heins developed the package based on Vend from Andrew Wilcox. Some of its features (direct from the MiniVend README file) are as follow:

  • Users maintain a "shopping cart" for ordered items.

  • SSL support means secure and practical credit card ordering.

  • Catalogs can be of almost unlimited size with excellent performance.

  • It provides a powerful search capability, including a complete Glimpse interface,
    one-click search profile capability, and independent field-search selection.

  • It provides multi-server mode for very high capacity on systems with sufficient memory.

  • It provides forked searches for consistent response time in single-server mode.

  • Cookie support allows browsers to leave a catalog and come back without losing the session state.

  • It provides full frames support.

  • Catalog pages are automatically selected--either built "on the fly" from the database or premade for popular items.

  • It works well with all browsers.

  • It provides complete addressable database support with virtually unlimited rows and columns.

  • It provides fully configurable quantity pricing.

  • It provides easy back-end order entry.

  • It provides full client-side imagemap support, including frame targets and form submits.

  • It provides automatic installation and configuration.

  • It provides remote administration via the Web using mat.

  • It runs under Perl5 and almost any UNIX platform.

  • It is designed to be secure and runs with taint checking enabled.

  • It includes a built-in online help capability.

  • It calculates sales tax, with fully independent nontaxable item and taxed shipping.

  • It calculates shipping (quantity and/or weight).

In the following sections, I explain how to install and configure the MiniVend package on your system and emphasize the importance of some of the features in the preceding list. You can find complete and up-to-date information on this package in the CPAN as well as at the following URL: