It seems the Magento quantity field corresponds to Quantity Available (Qty On Hand - Qty committed to orders) and not Quantity On Hand.

If we are updating inventory we are going to count how many we have of something and enter that number, but this would be wrong because there could already be orders in queue for that item or an order could be placed as we are updating the Qty. Is there a standard practice for dealing with this in Magento?

An example to clarify:

I have 13 of Product X in my warehouse. There is an order for 3 of Product X in queue to be shipped, so my Magento inventory would actually show a QTY of 10.

Now if 20 more of Product X come in from a supplier and need to be added to inventory, my stock people would need to see I had a QTY of 10, add 20 to that number and enter a new QTY of 30 into the system.

Between the time they open Product X's inventory tab, and they do the addition and click save, 1 more order for Product X could be placed. This would mean I would have 33 on hand, 4 committed to orders, QTY would say 30, but my quantity available for sale is actually only 29.

  • Spontaneous I would say you are wrong... Magento decrements the qty of a product, when an order is placed. But I never checked that... Everthing else doesn't make sense, good question! Jan 10, 2014 at 14:50
  • Yes, magento does so. So I'd say the only thing to worry about is an order being placed while the product manager has already opened the product, but not saved the new amount yet; you could put an observer on the product save() function to check if the old qty of the save-event is equal to the actual qty of the system. Jan 15, 2014 at 11:25

2 Answers 2


Magento reserves the product by decreasing the qty at order create. If I'm correct (working from my phone) there is an option under: Configuration > System > Catalog Inventory where you can disable this. But then you have to update the qty yourself at some point (when the order is shipped for example), this also means that you can sell more products than you have in your warehouse.


I ended up writing a module that lists the quantity of each sku that is currently committed to an order.

My stock people now count the quantity on hand, subtract the quantity committed and enter that number into the inventory.

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