Zen Cart specifications - Server Requirements(Last updated: Sept 20, 2016)
Minimum server requirements:
- Zen Cart operates on a standard "LAMP" stack: PHP, Apache, MySQL on most operating systems (Linux/macOS/Windows)
- See the detailed version-compatibility details in the sections below.
- Keep in mind that for security compliance, you should always use a PCI Compliant version of each of these required software components. (That means using a ZC version that's compatible with those software component versions, too!)
SSL, OpenSSL, CURL
- Many shipping and payment modules require CURL to be installed/compiled with PHP and OpenSSL. If this capability is not available, a message to that effect will be displayed during the initial installation's system-inspection, however it will still allow installation anyway. It is up to you to enable these features if your site uses features that require them.
- NOTE: Use of HTTPS (ie: SSL) is highly recommended for the purpose of protecting the data you collect about your customers, and their payments. In fact, some payment modules require SSL in order to work, and using them without SSL is typically a violation of your TOS with your merchant bank and PCI compliance.
- You should test your site's security using www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/ and have your hosting company resolve all reported issues.
- It is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED that you ensure your server administrator knows how to configure the server's TLS capabilities to be compliant with recent security trends (regardless of whether you wish to certify for PCI compliance, these TLS upgrades in the webserver world are critical for your own security and for optimum compatibility with 3rd party ecommerce services which you may wish to utilize in conjunction with your online store).
PHP VersionUsing the latest version of Zen Cart is always recommended for maximum compatibility.
- Zen Cart v1.5.5 is designed for PHP 5.5 up to PHP 7.0 (and actually works with as far back as PHP 5.2.10* if really necessary for temporary upgrading purposes), and works with PHP 7.1
- Zen Cart v1.5.4 is designed for PHP 5.5 and PHP 5.6 (and is compatible with PHP 5.3.7* and PHP 5.4 if posted bugfixes are researched and applied)
- Zen Cart v1.5.3 is compatible with PHP 5.3.7* thru PHP 5.6 (or PHP 5.2.14 with weakened security)
- Zen Cart v1.5.2 is compatible with PHP 5.3.7* thru PHP 5.6 (or PHP 5.2.14 with weakened security)
- Zen Cart v1.5.1 is compatible with PHP 5.2.14 thru PHP 5.3.x.
- Zen Cart v1.5.0 is compatible with PHP 5.2.14 thru PHP 5.3.x.
- Zen Cart v1.3.9 series is compatible with PHP 5.2.10 thru PHP 5.3.x.
- Zen Cart v1.3.7-v1.3.8a are compatible with PHP 4.3.2 thru PHP 5.2.x, but *not* PHP 5.3.
- Zen Cart v1.2.x through v1.3.6 are compatible with PHP 4.3.2 - 4.4.x. They are NOT compatible with PHP 5.
- The upcoming Zen Cart v1.6.0 is being designed for PHP 5.6 and PHP 7.x
PHP compatibility requirements of Plugins/Addons may vary. Consult each plugin's documentation and support discussion-thread for details.
What about old PHP versions? The life-cycle for PHP versions, according to the PHP developers, can be viewed at http://php.net/supported-versions.php
NOTE: PHP 5.5 and older are officially obsolete and no longer supported even for security patches. You should be using at least PHP 5.6 or newer!
PHP Modules used by Zen CartZen Cart requires a few PHP modules enabled: curl and mysqli.
Optional modules: gd and mb_xxxxx
PHP Memory Recommendations
- memory_limit suggested: 128M
- post_max_size and upload_max_filesize should be set to whatever max file size you or your customers may upload. Usually 8M is sufficient for most sites.
- Zen Cart v1.5.5 expects MySQL 5.1 to 5.7, and also works with MariaDB 10.1
- Zen Cart v1.5.0 to v1.5.4 expects MySQL 5.1 to 5.5 ... and may work with MariaDB 10.1
- Zen Cart v1.3.9 is compatible with MySQL 4.1.3+ thru 5.1
- Zen Cart v1.2.x thru 1.3.8a were designed for MySQL 4, and will give errors on MySQL5
Plugin/Addon-compatibility may vary.
Using the latest version of Zen Cart is always recommended for maximum compatibility.
- Zen Cart works primarily with Apache 2.4 or 2.2
- Recommended Apache modules include: expires, headers, env, alias, deflate, ssl, mime, phpX, rewrite (in addition to other standard/default modules).
The default Zen Cart distribution contains numerous Apache .htaccess rules to aid in implementing security protections against malicious spoofing and other abuse.
It also provides nginx conf files at the end of installation which you could manually copy into your nginx master configuration, to provide those same protections.
IIS ... no.
Zen Cart is not regularly tested on IIS, but is known to work on most modern IIS servers. That said, we don't recommend IIS, and we don't provide any default-configuration scripts for IIS.
Perl and other languages?
Zen Cart does not use Perl.