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Interchange V4.6.4

Copyright (C) 1996-2001 Akopia, Inc. <>

Originally based on Vend 0.2
Copyright 1995 by Andrew M. Wilcox

Portions from Vend 0.3
Copyright 1995,1996 by Andrew M. Wilcox

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it
under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the
Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your
option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but
WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY
or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License
for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along
with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc.,
59 Temple Place, Suite 330, Boston, MA  02111-1307  USA.

Welcome to Interchange! This program is completely unsupported, without
warranty of any kind. The author is interested in problems, suggestions,
or comments, but does not have time to offer free individual support
in most cases. See the Akopia website at
for more information.


                        I N T E R C H A N G E

Interchange is a full-featured electronic catalog system (commonly known
as a shopping cart) with online ordering capability. It is a high-end
database access and retrieval system with SQL support via the Perl DBI.

A full list of its features is available at:

IMPORTANT NOTE: Interchange absolutely REQUIRES Perl 5.005 or Perl 5.6.

The information you need is in the following files:

    README     This file: Copyright info, roadmap to installation
               and pointers to support system

    LICENSE    Your Interchange license -- please read.

    QuickStart Document to help you install Interchange

    WHATSNEW   Change information for all versions in this
               version family.

    MANIFEST   List of all core distribution files.

Major files/directories in the distribution:

    Makefile.PL The installation script.

    dist/       The distribution files, exclusive of executable
                files and modules. Includes:

                interchange.cfg.dist   Distribution interchange.cfg
                construct/             The new catalog demo application
                src/                   C and Perl code for CGI links
                lib/                   User interface
                usertag/               Some fairly-standard usertags

    extra/      Some not-always-needed Perl libraries.

    lib/        The library modules needed to run Interchange.

    pod/        Manual pages, viewable with perldoc.

    scripts/    The executable files, relocated to bin/ in the run
                directory.     The installation test script.


Here is the short version:

    gzip -dc interchange-4.6.*.tar.gz | tar xvf -
    cd interchange-4.6.*

The 'configure' script is basically a shortcut for:

    perl Makefile.PL
    make test && make install

Then you will need to make your first Interchange catalog. See the
section 'DEMO' below.

Remember to check for documentation and
help from other users if you have any trouble.

After making configuration changes, make sure to restart the server.
It won't take but a few seconds, and changes in configurable options
don't take effect until it is done. You may even change a page and not
see the effect until the server is restarted.

Interchange will not yet run reliably on Windows.


                             D E M O

There is a demo application included called "construct".

To install the demo, go to the directory where you installed Interchange
(default is "interchange" in your home directory, /usr/local/interchange
for root installations, or /usr/lib/interchange for RPM installations)
and run:

    bin/makecat construct


    bin/makecat any_id_you_pick

Follow the prompts and after restarting the Interchange server you
should be able to access the demo catalog.

Please note that some functionality (notably the reporting features)
may not be available if you are not using an SQL database such as
MySQL or PostgreSQL.

Visit to see a live demo on our servers.


                     D O C U M E N T A T I O N

The documentation is in several man pages and HTML files in the doc/
subdirectory of the main Interchange directory.

There is extended documentation available at
which includes user-annotated documentation, HTML versions of the manual,
and a user-contributed code library.


                      A V A I L A B I L I T Y
                              A N D
                     C O M P A T I B I L I T Y

Interchange 4 has been tested on Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris 2.x, and Digital
UNIX/Tru64. Its predecessor Minivend 3 also reportedly runs on SCO, AIX,
and other Unix ports. It should work on any UNIX or Win32 OS with Perl
5.005 or higher.

IMPORTANT NOTE FOR BSD USERS: Interchange has been known to segfault when
reading sockets on Perl. This occurs more frequently on a busy system.
The workaround is to set in minivend.cfg:

    MaxServers   0
    Housekeeping 1

Windows does not support fork(), so the server runs in the foreground. There
are other differences, and there may be portablity problems. Interchange is
not yet tested to run on Windows; the canonical installation is UNIX.


                    K N O W N   P R O B L E M S

    You will need to make sure the following are in effect
    in minivend.cfg:

        MaxServers 0
        Housekeeping 1

    Expect lots of crashes if you don't do this.

Apache with suEXEC:
    VLINK/UNIX socket mode will not work well unless you do the
    install as a normal user. If you are going to support multiple
    users, you must use TLINK/INET mode.

    Interchange will not work properly with Windows. No strategy
    has been yet developed for providing reliable operation on Windows.

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