Service Catalog | Troubleshooting - Cart Submission Issues

Table of Contents

  1. Overview
  2. Symptoms
  3. Potential Cause #1 - Orphan records on the sc_cart table
  4. Potential Cause #2 - Duplicate sc_cart records
  5. Potential Cause #3 - Out-of-box files skipped after upgrade and not yet reviewed
  6. Potential Cause #4 - Invalid dictionary entries on sc_request and/or sc_req_item tables
  7. Known Problems



The Service Catalog Cart Checkout process relies on the correctness of the files included with the application, such as UI pages, UI macros, business rules, and script includes, to guarantee that the communication between client and server occurs in the expected order and with the right parameters being carried over.

To see all files that are shipped with the base system Service Catalog application, navigate to System Definition > Plugins, and search for the name Service Catalog Platform. On the Plugin Files related list, you can see the names and classes (UI Macro, Client Script, etc.) of each file.

Note – You might have to add the Class and Display name columns to the list if they not do not already appear.

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With this basic introduction in mind, this article presents a list of possible quick solutions, to address two common Service Catalog issues, usually observed based on the following symptoms:

  • A blank page appears after submitting your order.
  • The error message “Cannot check out with an empty cart!” appears even though items are in your cart.

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Potential cause #1: Orphan records on the sc_cart_item table

  1. Type sc_cart.list in the application navigator to open the Shopping Carts table.

  2. Find and open the record associated with the user experiencing the problem.

  3. On the Items related list, check for any records where the Item reference is blank or is pointing to an invalid record.


  4. Delete the orphan record from the Items related list.

  5. Check whether this action resolves the issue.

A known problem related to this issue was addressed in the Geneva release.

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Potential cause #2: Duplicate sc_cart records

  1. Navigate to the Shopping Cart table (sc_cart).

  2. Run a filter query search where the User value is the current user experiencing the issue, as in the following example.

  3. At this point, the solution depends on the situation. The recommended fix is to remove all these carts for this user and to then have the user start all over again by creating a new cart. This action also removes any Cart Item records (sc_cart_item) that are associated to these respective carts.

  4. If for some reason the user wants to still have access to any potential Items that are still in this user's carts, note the following potential workarounds depending on the situation.

    • If all the items that the user wants to keep are in one specific cart for this user:

      1. Delete all the other carts associated to that user.

      2. Navigate to the Service Catalog and see whether these Items are displayed in the Shopping Cart widget.

        This workaround might not always work because the cart that your Catalog might have been referencing might not have been the same cart where these Items are located.

    • If you have multiple items in multiple carts or if the first solution does not work:

      1. Open these sc_cart_item records individually and clear out the current Cart value associated to these records.
      2. Delete all the carts for this user.
      3. Navigate to the Service Catalog homepage, which should create a new cart for this user.

      4. Associate these Items to this new Cart record.

        Note – When trying to find the appropriate cart to connect to, the reference lookup will search by name and the name of all your carts is likely to be DEFAULT. Instead, you might have to do some manipulation using Scripts - Background to update the Cart value on these sc_cart_item records based on the sys_id of the Cart record itself.

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Potential cause #3: Base system files skipped after upgrade and not yet reviewed

  1. Look for Service Catalog plugin files that were skipped by using the following URL:


  2. Revert any custom files to the base system versions.

  3. Clear your instance cache by going to https://<your_instance>.service-now.com/cache.do to make sure they are reloaded.

  4. Check whether this process resolved the issue.

  5. If this process did not resolve the issue, the custom file might have caused some invalid entries to be created on the Shopping Cart table.

    1. Open the sc_cart table and see whether you have any carts with a name different than DEFAULT, for example, "null."

    2. If such carts exist, remove them from the table.

    3. Verify whether the issue is resolved.

    4. If this issue still exists and you need to do some further debugging, a possible place to start is the CatalogTransactionCheckout Script Include, which is the source of the “Cannot check out with an empty cart!” message. (CatalogTransactionCheckoutTwo if using the two-step checkout).

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Potential cause #4: Invalid dictionary entries on sc_request and/or sc_req_item tables

Although not as common a cause, your sc_request/sc_req_item tables might have custom fields with invalid data associated.

When ordering a standard Catalog Item, RITM (sc_req_item) and REQ (sc_request) records are created. With an invalid dictionary, the system will fail to create these records, and the user doing the submission might end up with a blank screen or some other unexpected error message.

For example, you might have a custom Currency field with an invalid Default value, as shown in the following example.

The solution to this case is to deactivate the custom dictionary field, and check whether the issue is resolved.

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Known Problems

  • KB0529844 - Receiving "Cannot check out with an empty cart!" error after checkout.

    This problem was fixed as of the Eureka release.

  • KB0563056 - Multiple clicks on Proceed to Checkout button leads to "Cannot check out with an empty cart!" error after checkout

    This problem was fixed as of the Fuji Patch 12, Geneva Patch 3, Helsinki, and Istanbul releases.

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Article Information

Last Updated:2019-08-02 21:24:01