Basics - Useful Tools

Useful Tools for working with Zen Cart

Descriptions of these tools can be found at the individual web sites

PHP, HTML and Text Editors

You need a plain text editor to modify the Zen Cart files. You cannot use MS Word or other document editors. Here are some options.

Freeware

Commercial

Hash Validation Tools

Text-Search Tools

Text search tools are useful for finding the locations of strings you want to change.

Freeware

  • The Developers Toolkit in your Zen Cart Admin
  • Sublime Text (Windows, Mac, Linux)

Graphics Editors

These utilities are also called “Image Editors.”

Freeware

File Comparison Utility

File comparison tools allow you to compare older versions of Zen Cart with newer versions, or compare a vanilla copy of a file with a copy from a modification or plugin.

Freeware

  • WinMerge (Windows)
  • Kdiff3 (Unix, Windows, Mac)
  • P4Merge (Windows, Mac, Linux) (allegedly can do a 4-way compare with git branch conflicts)

Commercial

  • Beyond Compare (Windows and Mac and Linux) ** Offers 3-way comparisons! **
  • Araxis Merge (Windows, Mac) ** Offers 3-way comparisons **

FTP Tools

FTP stands for “File Transfer Protocol.” You use FTP to connect to your hoster and upload files to your cart. An example of transferring a file is provided in Installing a File.

Note that whatever tool you select must have the ability to do secure file transfer.

Freeware

  • WinSCP A great Windows-based secure-FTP program. RECOMMENDED
  • FileZilla (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    NOTE: download from this official link only.
    NOTE: do not store passwords in Filezilla; type them in each time
  • CyberDuck FTP (Mac)

Commercial

File Archiver/Zip/Unzip Utility

The Zen Cart code and plugins come in .zip format, so you need a way to handle files like this.

Freeware

Commercial

Validators

Freeware

Database Manipulation Tools

Freeware

Commercial

Local Web Server for Development Environment

Freeware




Still have questions? No problem! Just head over to the Zen Cart support forum and ask there in the appropriate subforum. In your post, please include your Zen Cart and PHP versions, and a link to your site.

Is there an error or omission on this page? Please post to General Questions on the support forum. Or, if you'd like to open a pull request, just review the guidelines and get started. You can even PR right here.
Last modified September 13, 2020 by Scott C Wilson (dfc38fe).