MetaTag Settings – More Info

MetaTag Settings – More Info

Navigation Bar Settings – More Info

Navigation Bar Settings – More Info

Screen Messages – More Info

Screen Messages – More Info

OpenMaintenance™ Interface – More Info

OpenMaintenance™ Interface – More Info

Security Settings – More Info

Security Settings – More Info


OpenUI Tutorials is provided in a number of different formats. You will find links to each below:

Dallas Miva Users Group Presentation (May 2004)

  • PowerPoint format
  • IE-HTML format

OpenDesigner — Custom Error Screen Tutorial (updated 05/19/2004)

OpenDesigner — Contact Us Screen Tutorial (updated 05/19/2004)

OpenDesigner — HTML Customer Email Tutorial (updated 05/20/2004)

About Tags

You can now add tags into your MivaScript programs (uncompiled or compiled) that perform functions like a normal preprocessor:

  • includes
  • macros
  • conditionals
  • command-line directives
  • function stubs
  • default functions
  • code optimizations using whitespace and line break removal


OpenUI Look & Feel User Documentation is provided in a number of different formats. You will find links to each below:

OpenUI Look & Feel Installation Guide (updated 01/08/2004)

OpenUI Look & Feel Usage Guide (updated 11/06/2003)

OpenUI Token & Object Usage Guide (updated 01/08/2004)

OpenDesigner User Documentation:

OpenDesigner Installation & Usage Guide (updated 12/21/2003)

OpenStatistics User Documentation:

OpenStatistics Installation & Usage Guide (updated 11/06/2003)

OpenMaintenance User Documentation:

OpenMaintenance Installation & Usage Guide (updated 11/06/2003)

We also have some OpenUI Developer Documentation. You will find links to each below:

OpenUI Developers Guide (updated 12/21/2003)

How to Get Involved

There are many elements of the OpenUI Developer Consortium which have the potential for special concentration. OpenUI developers and supporters are encouraged to offer suggestions and help where they can! Areas where help is welcomed include:
Freely distributable Code samples
Demo modules
Beta Testing new releases
Feature Suggestions
Website Copy
Anything else…
Compensation in the form of business credits, links, banner ads, licenses and more are available. If you see something missing, please let us know how you can help. What benefits the OpenUI, benefits us all.

The Module Market

When Miva Merchant v1.x was released, it marked the first mainstream shopping cart with a fully developed module API. This allowed 3rd party developers to create addon modules, to enhance the functionality of the base product. These included products for Coupons, Gift Certificates, Electronic Software Distribution (ESD), Affiliate Programs, Pricing Discounts, Inventory Control, License Key Distribution, etc. The first releases of many of these products were impressive, but still basic.

As March 2000 came around, Miva Merchant v2.x was released, including a major overhaul of the module API, and the shopping cart as a whole. System and Store Utility modules were introduced, as well as Wizards and Log modules. The APIs for each specific module type was advanced forward, providing even more capabilities and removing the need (in almost all cases) to modify the core shopping cart scripts. This release, combined with the first OpenUI release, started the explosion of 3rd party modules we see today.

Today, Miva Merchant has the largest 3rd party module base of any shopping cart package, with over 25 primary module vendors offering well over 575 modules and services to enhance your storefront and your customer’s shopping experience. All 100% of these modules are compatible with the OpenUI Look & Feel, and we are proud to say that almost all of these modules rely on the OpenUI Look & Feel module to hook into your store.


February 1999
In early 1999, Darren Ehlers (a.k.a. STARBASE-21) released it’s first module: AgentTrk™ for Miva Merchant v1.x. This was one of the first of many modules written to make use of and extend the Miva Merchant shopping cart. By June of that same year, the list of available modules had grown, and they had already outgrown the extents of the Miva Merchant module API and needed more control over the UI; hence, the STARBASE-21 Look & Feel (SBUI) module was born.

The SBUI included hooks for each and every STARBASE-21 module, but also required an update every time a module was updated or a new module was released. This became very difficult to maintain and became even more confusing as the end-users customized the SBUI to match their specific store layout (or added non-STARBASE-21 modules, such as those written by Bill Weiland of There had to be a better way…

March 2000
In March of 2000, Miva Merchant v2.x was first released, and the time for change had come. The determination was made that to advance the Miva Merchant module market, a way for modules to cooperate together (even modules from different developers) had to be designed and deployed. Design input was gathered from many Miva Merchant developers, most notably Jeff Collins ( and Jeff Huber ( Darren, using STARBASE-21 module sales for funding, initiated a month-long development of the initial OpenUI Look & Feel module. It would provide a way for modules to externally hook into the UI, without directly modifying the UI script. This would allow for easy UI upgrades, and put the control of the module changes back inside the modules.

April 2000
On April 2nd of 2000, the first OpenUI Look & Feel module was released. To foster support from other module developers, and the Merchant community as a whole, the decision was made to not place the STARBASE-21 name on it, but instead to create a developer-independant OpenUI Developer Consortium to develop and maintain the new Look & Feel module. As a result, the OpenUI was quickly adopted by the other developers and true plug-n-play screen modules with Miva Merchant became a reality.

September 2002
Enhancements, speed improvements and security updates continued thru all Miva Merchant v2.x, v3.x and v4.x updates, until the release of Miva Merchant v4.14 and the Miva Compiler in September of 2002. At this point in time, STARBASE-21 had been closed (modules being supported and resold thru and to convert the macros so prevalent inside the OpenUI (required for performance reasons) to compiled-compatible Miva Script required a major redesign. Since no module sales were around to fund the development, the time had come for the OpenUI to support it’s own evolution…the OpenUI started it’s compiled life at the low-cost of $20/store. Up to this point, the OpenUI shopper screens were still almost a visual copy of the MMUI Look & Feel. But that was about to change…

November 2002
The release of the OpenUI v4.48/v4.54 introduced the OpenOrders™ and OpenBatches™ interfaces, and the OpenUI Statistics. These were the first of many major enhancements to be made available to the OpenUI users over the following 6 months, culminating with the release of OpenTokens™. Thru the years, the OpenUI has proven itself to be the most widely used 3rd party module, and many developers wouldn’t dream of designing a store without it.

Jump on board and enjoy the ride…the future is rich and OpenUI will continue to lead the way.


Install It Yourself!
OpenUI Look & Feel installation is simple and straight-forward, much like installing any Miva Merchant module. But, there are a couple of additional steps that have to be taken, to make sure everything goes smoothly, and all of your existing data is moved over correctly.

OpenUI Look & Feel Installation Steps

  1. Installing the OpenUI Look & Feel module
  2. Installing the OpenUI graphic files
  3. Exporting your UI-Settings
  4. Switching your store layout from MMUI to the OpenUI Look & Feel
  5. Importing your UI-Settings

That’s basically all there is to it. For more details and specific instructions, check out the OpenUI Look & Feel Installation Guide in our OpenUI Look & Feel Documentation section.

Let Us Install It For You!
If you want to make sure your installation goes smoothly, we do offer installation services for only $75.00. Just click to Purchase Installation and then complete the Checkout. As soon as we receive confirmation of payment, we will email instructions on scheduling your installation. Installations normally take 24 – 48 hours.

Release Notes
(Written for Miva Merchant v4.x)
Copyright (c) 2003 - 2000 by Darren Ehlers.  All Rights Reserved.

This file and the source codes contained herein are the property of and Darren Ehlers.  Use of this file is restricted to the specific terms and conditions in the License Agreement associated with this file.  Distribution of this file or portions of this file for uses not covered by the License Agreement is not allowed without a written agreement signed by an officer of
// --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
//    MivaScript Preprocessor
//    Revision 4.10 2003/01/09  dme
//        Added asciichar replacement of '\' during MvpEXPORT/MvpEMBED
//    Revision 4.09 2003/01/07  dme
//        Added MvpCANCEL tag
//    Revision 4.08 2002/11/06  dme
//        Fixed Miva Tag output when embedded in JavaScript
//    Revision 4.07 2002/10/07  dme
//        Added MvpEMBED tag
//    Revision 4.06 2002/09/12  dme
//        Fixed a bug with touching being wrong when files are in different paths
//    Revision 4.05 2002/09/03  dme
//        Fixed another obscure macro error
//    Revision 4.04 2002/09/03  dme
//        Added -I Include Path option
//    Revision 4.03 2002/08/31  dme
//        Fixed macro usage problem when parameter includes comma or close paren inside quotes
//        Fixed macro usage problem when non-quoted comma is used in function call
//        Fixed line numbering problem when blank macros are used
//        Fixed problem with replacing macros that are previously defined
//    Revision 4.02 2002/08/23  dme
//        Added demo build, limited to 250 tags, for free trial/demo release
//        Added compatibility mode for retaining current include functionality (-c)
//        Alter default functionality to make all includes relative to the directory the
//          including file is in, instead of only the original cwd
//    Revision 4.01 2002/08/22  dme
//        Started preparing source for Linux compilation
//       Added ability to use escape character ('\') in macros (spec. for double quotes)
//       Added long version of
//    Revision 4.00 2002/08/21  dme
//        Readied for commercial release
// --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


About Organization

The OpenUI Developer Consortium is a growing collection of developers and users working to create an open-access code interface for the e-commerce program Miva Merchant®.

Miva Merchant is an e-commerce application which lends itself easily to the creation of add-on features and utilities. A Merchant “module” can be created that operates as a plug-in to the application. Some Merchant modules increase the administrative capabilities of Merchant, others make transactions more flexible or pleasant for shoppers.

Along with the ability to customize Merchant functions comes a challenge of blending new modules into the existing “stock” application. This often means extensive customization of the Miva Merchant User Interface (MMUI); the module which contains creates most of the screens the shopper sees.

On one hand, editing and adding program code to the MMUI permits an almost unlimited access to customizing Merchant to suit a site operator’s need. Alignment, colors, columns, button rollovers, and user prompts are all controlled in the MMUI so it often becomes the central focus of a developer’s attention.

But sometimes addition of even the smallest module or added effect can mean customizing the MMUI to the point where it no longer retains the same level of compatibility with future versions of Merchant.

The Solution
One solution is called the OpenUI Look & Feel Interface (OpenUI). The OpenUI will provide central ‘hooks’ through which developers may add features and performance enhancing solutions without having to reinvent the wheel with each Merchant release.

Adding the Hooks
The OpenUI will provide a common ground for developing ‘hooks’ into the Merchant user interface. Through one common interface many other modules may hook themselves into the UI without the need for extensive re-editing.

The Benefits for Merchant Operators
Merchant site owners and operators can take advantage of the OpenUI through the increased utility it offers. Changes to what a shopper experiences on your site may be added and removed without editing the OpenUI file. It will permit changes to be made to the “look and feel” of your Merchant site; and not loose those changes when the next version of Merchant is released.

For Developers
The OpenUI offers a developer the opportunity to focus on sub-sets of the user interface, applying ‘plug and play’ enhancements to the shopping experience. Or to provide utilities which will supplement site adminstration. Large Merchant sub-systems may be built without fear of massive recoding and cumbersome reinstalls as the result of a new Merchant version. In most cases your module or specialized function may be upgraded through a simple copy-over replacement.

Strength in Numbers The larger the installed base of OpenUI compatible modules, functions and enhancements, the larger the impact of and for the developer community. Ease of add-on installation and updates means more potential market to reach.

Help Build a Future for Merchant
The OpenUI is committed to enhancing the development of Miva Merchant and its affiliate applications. Through the acceptance and support of the Miva community as a whole, the OpenUI hopes to stimulate the potential for developer enhancement via a convenient, openly shared central OpenUI Look & Feel.

Please visit our site frequently to track the progress. Along with notices of new releases and announcements of project development, we hope to showcase the results of the finest Miva developers around.