Extending the Commerce Server 2007/2009 Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager

by dcurtis 8/7/2010 5:42:00 AM

I'm currently working on a project that is putting a web front-end onto the Commerce Server Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager and the Catalog Manager.  As we were creating the specifications for the project, we were disappointed that some elements were missing from the property definitions.  For instance, we would like to have a description for the property definition to indicate what the property is used for.  We searched for any information about extending property definitions, but we had little success finding anything until we stumbled upon a blog post found here.  As stated in the blog post, many of the entities in the schema manager can be extended.  The following is a step-by-step procedure for performing the extensions:

First, open the Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager and create your new property (for this example I am going to create a property named NewProperty just to illustrate the process.  The data type or the options I selected for this property are irrelevant to this example so I won't display them here.).

Next, the NewProperty property needs to be added to the property entity.  To extend one of the entities, click on the Edit Property Metadata link.  As you'll see from the following image, there are other entity types you can extend as well:

Commerce Server Catalog and Inventory Schema manager entity metadata.

Next, select NewProperty from the list of Available Properties and click the Add>> button to add it to the Assigned Properties as shown in the following image:

Click the Save and Close button, and that is it!  You've extended the property entity.  Unfortunately, when you open any of the existing properties in the Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager, you will not see your new property to set the value--you'll need to access the property programmatically in order to set the value.  The link I posted earlier in this post contains the code necessary to set your new property so I won't repeat it here.  The only thing you'll need to remove is the code that creates the property and adds it to the entity.

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Derek Curtis Derek Curtis
President, Plaid Pony Technology Solutions LLC

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