Commerce Server 2007 introduces a new Inventory System for the real time management of inventory items in the catalog. The Inventory System supports updating inventory information for all items, monitoring inventory depletion, and importing and exporting inventory information to and from external systems of record. The Inventory System serves the needs of shoppers, business managers, site administrators, and external line-of-business systems that interface with Commerce Server.
The Inventory System includes support for the following functions:
Flexible configuration that allows for backordering and display of out of stock stock-keeping units (SKUs).
Order checking and update through pipeline components.
Full text search and query integration with the Catalog System.
Import and export operations similar to the Catalog System.
Runtime APIs with methods for searching, browsing, viewing details, inventory search options that include product filtering, assigning inventory conditions, and roll-up values.
Integration with other Commerce Server systems, such as the Catalog System and Orders System.
Integration with Microsoft BizTalk Server; import and export APIs to support line-of-business systems integration.
The following table describes the Inventory System features. For information about the features available from the Windows Smart Client Web services-enabled Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager application, see Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager.
Inventory schema management. Create, edit, retrieve, and delete property metadata that you use to manage inventory data.
Inventory SKU management. Create, edit, retrieve, and delete property metadata that you use to manage inventory SKUs.
Ad hoc updates. Update the inventory SKUs as needed to make sure that the system adequately reflects the physical inventory.
Incrementing inventory SKUs. Make sure that the Commerce Server Web site is updated with the latest inventory quantities when incoming shipments arrive.
Decrementing inventory SKUs. Decrement the inventory when sales (checkouts) occur to make sure that other users are informed correctly about the accurate inventory position on a real-time basis.
Bulk updates. Perform bulk updates and deletes of properties for multiple products or categories by specifying an expression or a dataset.
Application Programming Interfaces
Agent management API. Use to create, update, delete, and retrieve inventory SKU and inventory catalog entities programmatically.
Catalog integration API. Use to interoperate with the Catalog System programmatically.
Orders System integration API. Use to interoperate with the Orders System programmatically.
Runtime management APIs. Use to assign inventory conditions and roll up values programmatically.
Runtime search APIs. Use inventory search options to conduct product filtering programmatically.
Runtime viewing APIs. Use to search, browse, and view inventory details programmatically.
Web service management API. Use to create, update, delete, and retrieve inventory SKUs and inventory catalog entities programmatically.
Catalog and Inventory Schema Manager. Manage inventory metadata and SKUs by using the new Windows Forms-based Web service.
Check inventory. Use to check stock-on-hand during a basket checkout operation.
Update inventory. Use to update the inventory quantity for a product as part of a purchase operation.
Inventory computations. Use to calculate quantity in stock, back-ordered, or pre-ordered based on configurations.
Catalog data consistency checker. Synchronize data and identify data inconsistency between a product catalog and an inventory catalog.
Synchronization. Synchronize the management server with inventory depletion on the production server.
Client system import/export. Import and export inventory data to a remote system.
Import/export status reporting. Track the status of import and export operations as they occur.
BizTalk Adapter for Inventory. Exchange inventory data with external systems programmatically.
Synchronization. Synchronize any line-of-business system with inventory depletion on the production server.
Granular security. You use Windows Authorization Manager to manage scopes, roles, tasks, and operations in the Inventory System.
Collection or View-level Security. Security levels are included on each of the individual view states throughout the Customer and Orders Manager to allow for role-based access.
Task-based roles. Support for the following task-based roles:
Inventory Administrator. Members can manage the Inventory System.
Inventory Editor. Members can manage inventory for individual inventory catalogs.
Inventory Synchronization Manager. Members can synchronize the run-time Inventory System with the management system.
Inventory Systems Viewer. Members can view the inventory for all inventory catalogs.
Inventory Viewer. Members can view the inventory for individual catalogs.
Inventory pipeline performance counters. Record events associated with the run-time performance of the Inventory System pipeline components, such as Inventory Update Total, Inventory Update Rate, Inventory SKU Query Total, and more.
Inventory management-time performance counters. Record events associated with the run-time performance of the Marketing Manager Web service, such as Inventory Update Total, Inventory Update Rate, Inventory Export Total, and more.
Windows event tracing. Use to help with troubleshooting.