2006-08-10 Woozle-Techsol emails

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Overview

Tech Solutions states on their e-commerce hosting page that they use osCommerce and that they can interface with QuickBooks. I emailed to ask them more about this, and received some useful information (though unfortunately not a solution) from one Myles Wakeham at TechSol.

Emails

07:53 Woozle to TechSol via web page

I'm setting up a ZenCart shopping site for a client who wants a QuickBooks interface. I see that you can apparently interface QuickBooks and osCommerce. ZenCart and osCommerce are apparently related, and I was wondering if you might be able to help with a solution.

The most urgent task is probably to be able to get a list of products from QuickBooks into ZenCart; after that, being able to update stock in QB from ZC data would be very useful.

Thanks!

10:49 Myles to Woozle

What OS platform is your webserver running on? And what webserver software are you using?

16:10:06 Woozle to Myles

OS is some version of Linux; I can ask about the distro if it matters. I *think* it's Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

Web server is Apache.

16:10:54 Myles to Woozle

Basically, its not pretty. QB, since v2002, have provided an XML facility to communicate with it from any remote application. But its all based on COM which means that the app that communicates with it must reside on Windows. We've built bridging applications to do this before, in Delphi, that will act as a web service server, and will bridge between a web server that can issue SOAP XML requests (as you could do with PHP on Apache on your Linux box) to our bridging software, which then forwards the request to QB and sends back the response as XML data.

But its messy and expensive. Our rates for building this sort of thing would mean that if you didn't have a $10K+ budget for it, I can't help you. Sorry, but this is how QB works.

16:45 Woozle to Myles

That's interesting and informative; thank you.

Is the XML facility to which you refer QODBC? Or is it part of the QuickBooks SDK? Or built in? At this point, I'd be happy to get clarity on what is the best avenue towards a solution, even if I have to custom-program it myself.

Also... do your osCommerce solutions run on Windows, then? That might be an alternative; we're looking for a portable solution, but the need to include QuickBooks may end up restricting the solution-space...

Thanks very much!

17:19 Myles to Woozle

All your answers are at:

http://developer.intuit.com

As for our hosting, we have both Windows 2000 & Linux solutions, but I don't really think we would be the best option for you, unless you wanted an end-to-end solution (ie. We develop & host the entire thing). Its probably going to be too expensive. I'd just find a virtual hosting solution (ie. Try http://www.atjeu.com or something like that) and just have a Windows computer there that you can deploy on. Again, the problem here is that you need something running on the computer that runs Quickbooks locally, so you'll probably need a solution that is part hosted and part operated on the same computer as Quickbooks. For us, its all a bit too messy.