Zen Cart is made available to you for your use, addition, changes, modification, etc. without charge, under Version 2 of the GNU General Public License.
While we do not charge for this software, donations are greatly appreciated, each time you install a new version, to help cover the expenses of maintenance, upgrades, updates, the free support forum and the continued development of this software for your online E-Commerce store.
Donations can be made on the Zen Cart Team Page
We appreciate your support.
The Zen Cart Team
Zen Cart v1.5.7 is designed for PHP 5.6 to 7.4, with MySQL 5.1 to 5.7 (or MariaDB 10.0-10.4) and Apache 2.2/2.4
See the online docs for Release-Specific considerations to note regarding this version. https://docs.zen-cart.com/user/upgrading/
This document only mentions the actual changes specific to v1.5.7 since v1.5.6, and additional notes may have been added to the online notes.
If you are already using v1.5.6 and *have NOT customized or altered* any of the files listed in the changed_files-v1.5.7.html document, then simply replace those files with the new files as listed.
If you have *customized or altered* certain files, you must merge your customizations into the new versions of those files.
If you are using Addons/Plugins that use modified versions of those files, you must compare those plugin files to the original Zen Cart files of the version for which those plugins were built, to identify the modifications. Subsequently you must replicate those modifications in the v1.5.7 file.
If you are upgrading from a version OLDER than v1.5.6, then please do a standard site upgrade. Be sure to review all the links in this article, including tips on staging the upgrade in a separate directory/folder.
For a list of files that have been changed since v1.5.6, see the changed_files-v1-5-7.html document.
Zen Cart contains a newer "responsive_classic" template, which performs well on mobile devices such as phones and tablets. If you are upgrading an older site, we recommend that you use this template (rather than template_default or any older non-responsive template) as the starting point for your upgraded site.
Upgraders should make sure they update *BOTH* template_default *AND* their custom templates as described here
In Zen Cart the template_default directory contains the master copy of all storefront page templates.
The normal procedure for customizing template files for use in your own personalized template is to make a copy of the corresponding file from template_default, put it into your own template folder (and matching folder structure), and make your customizations in that copy of the file.
This way the only files you need in your personalized template folder are those that you have altered in some way from template_default.
With that explained, it is important that whenever you upgrade your site, you should also inspect ALL the template_default files to determine which changes in those files need to be replicated in your customized files. Comparison/Merging Tools are essential for this process; see the Zen Cart Developer Tools for recommendations.
The process is simple: compare the template_default directory files from your *old* version to the template_default files in the *new* version, and replicate any differences in the files in your custom/personalized template in your store. If you based your template on responsive_classic, you should also compare and merge any changes from that template.
Then, and only after you have done all those comparisons and updated your customized files in your custom template folder, you will copy the template_default files from the new version into the template_default directory of your store. This way you will be left with updated personalized files *and* updated template_default files.
This way you will be left with updated personalized files *and* updated template_default files.
A detailed list of all edits to all files can be seen on Github at: v1.5.6...v1.5.7