Microsoft Commerce Server, anyone? 

I am currently working on an e-commerce solution that is based on Microsoft Commerce Server 2007 SP2. Without prior experience of MSCS, and without being the one setting up the solution, I am at a loss regarding some issues that we are trying to solve.

Anonymous baskets

A big problem for us, and a strange one to solve, is that 200.000 anonymous baskets are automatically generated every night!ย This occurs in all environments – locally, at the test and stage servers as well as in production. The basket creation occurs at the same time every night, which (duh) indicates a scheduled event of some kind.

My developers have not been able to track down what is causing this. Instead, they have created a scheduled task that empties anonymous baskets that are not used. So, we have not fixed the problem, we are just cleaning up the mess.

These auto-generated baskets did cause the MSCS database to grow to insane levels. Our scheduled task have brought it back to normal, but the dream scenario would naturally be to be able to track down what is happening and simply solve the problem. Since it happens locally, we can exclude any of the import jobs that run continuously, as well as any externally exposed web services.

Has anyone experienced this behavior with MSCS 2007 before? If so, I would appreciate a push in the right direction.

Slow data operations

Our load tests show that the site has become a bit slower since the new version was launched in May. Sure, the devs have added a lot of new functionality, but when I analyze the data operations that take the longest time to execute, it turns out that MSCS is the real bottleneck. Profile creation can take up large parts of the execution time when a view is built, and product sub categories are really slow to load.

For a system like MSCS, is it really realistic to assume that the database has become that much slower in just six months. The MSCS database has not undergone any optimizations during this time, but should it really be necessary? We are bringing in a SQL optimizer, but if anyone has experienced that MSCS slows down due to bad indices or so, I’d love to hear more about it.