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This topic describes how to use content providers in Episerver Commerce. The content provider technology is a powerful integration method to extract content from different sources and make it available on a website, providing an integrated user experience.

In Episerver Commerce, you can make product catalog data available inside the Episerver CMS Edit view. Editors can drag-and-drop product content into content areas of a page or a block. They also can edit and manage the catalog content through an interface that has the same look and feel, and similar interaction patterns, as the CMS Edit view.

Classes in this topic are available in the following namespaces:

Basic concepts

In Episerver Commerce, the Content Provider builds the integration between the catalog system and Episerver CMS. The ECF Catalog system consists of the following parts:

  • Catalog. Can contain either NodeContent or EntryContent; the biggest element in the Catalog system. 
  • NodeContent. Can be the child of a Catalog or another CatalogNode, and can be the parent of CatalogEntries or other CatalogNode(s).
  • EntryContent. Must be the child of a Catalog or CatalogNode, and cannot be the parent of anything else. You can move, copy, or link  CatalogNode and CatalogEntry only within a Catalog.

The Commerce content root integrates the ECF Catalog system, which is the root content of whole catalog system in Episerver CMS. The Commerce content root can include only Catalogs; CatalogNode and CatalogEntry are not permitted.

You should use standard Episerver API's to work with your commerce content in CMS. The provider handles the mapping to and from ECF for you.

Load a product

C#
//Get the currently configured content loader and reference converter from the service locator
var contentLoader = ServiceLocator.Current.GetInstance<IContentLoader>();
var referenceConverter = ServiceLocator.Current.GetInstance<ReferenceConverter>();

//Get the correct product id as it's represented in EPiServer Commerce
//In this example we arbitrarily use the integer 1
var productIdFromCommerce = 1;

//We use the content link builder to get the contentlink to our product
var productLink = referenceConverter.GetContentLink(productIdFromCommerce, CatalogContentType.CatalogEntry, 0);

//Get the product using CMS API
var productContent = contentLoader.Get<CatalogContentBase>(productLink);

//The commerce content name represents the name of the product
var productName = productContent.Name;

Get children of a category

C#
//Get the currently configured content loader and reference converter from the service locator
var contentLoader = ServiceLocator.Current.GetInstance<IContentLoader>();
var referenceConverter = ServiceLocator.Current.GetInstance<ReferenceConverter>();

//Get the correct category id as it's represented in EPiServer Commerce
//In this example we arbitrarily use the integer 1
var nodeIdFromCommerce = 1;

//We use the content link builder to get the contentlink to our product
var productLink = referenceConverter.GetContentLink(nodeIdFromCommerce, CatalogContentType.CatalogNode, 0);

//Get the children using CMS API
var children = contentLoader.GetChildren<CatalogContentBase>(productLink);

Determining the catalog content type

In the ECF catalog system, Catalog/Node/Entry are stored in different tables, which means they might end up having the same ID. To resolve this, the Commerce content provider reverses the two most significant bits (MSB) to determine which type of catalog content is being used.

When converting from a Commerce content ID to a content link, you add two more bits to the left of the ID. When converting from a content link back to a Commerce content ID, the two MSBs are cleared out. You can use the ReferenceConverter to perform these actions.

C#
public void ConversionSampleCode(CatalogContentBase content)
{
    var catalogContext = CatalogContext.Current;
    var referenceConverter = ServiceLocator.Current.GetInstance<ReferenceConverter>();
    if (content is EntryContentBase)
    {
        //convert from ContentReference to catalog object id
        var entryId = referenceConverter.GetObjectId(content.ContentLink);
        var entry = catalogContext.GetCatalogEntryDto(entryId, 
            new CatalogEntryResponseGroup(CatalogEntryResponseGroup.ResponseGroup.CatalogEntryFull));

        //do something with the entry

        //Covert from catalog object id to ContentReference
        var contentType = referenceConverter.GetContentType(content.ContentLink);
        var contentLink = referenceConverter.GetContentLink(entryId, contentType, 0);
    }
}

EntryContent can be one of four different subclasses:

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