I’ve been playing around with Satchmo recently, and I’ve finally got it working the way I want – but it was a bit of a struggle, particularly with the configuration files – so here’s some quick tips to help anyone get started:

First off – the installation documentation at the moment does not match up with the svn release, particularly the configuration information in the settings.py and local_settings.py – there are modules that are misnamed and others that shouldn’t be included at all.

My first tip is to go read this: Real world project layout for a satchmo installation, it gives a good idea of setting up a real-world example and maks it a little clearer as to how the whole framework works – there is a second tutorial on skinning the app which is also quite helpful.

My second tip is to clean up the settings files – if one follows the installation instructions you’ll end up having variables declared several times in multiple files, particularly if you’re trying to integrate it with another site – keep it clean.

My third tip – set up a couple of clean installs before throwing yourself in head first – the sample projects may run out of the box, but by the time you’ve got all the dependencies installed and running and looked at the sample projects – they do not help you getting set up with your own store, also – getting the configuration right for a Satchmo install is tricky, particularly if you want to retain flexibility. I can’t emphasize how good GoSatchmo is as a resource for getting started.

What I’m looking for is a good video-tutorial on setting up Satchmo for the first time, I think it would really help Satchmo get the PR it deserves (everyone remembers those Rails and TurboGears screencasts – they make a great case for the frameworks, Satchmo should follow the example).