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How To Choose An Open Source CMS

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 7 years ago | from the focus-on-the-problem dept.

Software 191

An anonymous reader writes "Content management specialist Seth Gottlieb has written an easy to understand how-to on selecting an open source CMS. Gottlieb is also responsible for the whitepaper 'Content Management Problems and Open Source Solutions' which summarizes 15 open source projects and distinguishes between open source CMS and proprietary software selection."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Hm, an OpenSource CMS? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14556907) []

Re:Hm, an OpenSource CMS? (2, Interesting)

netkid91 (915818) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557293)

My favorite site in the world. They offer demos of almost every good F/OSS CMS there is. It's there that I played around with Drupal and fell in love it. This link is a great thing, and if you are looking for a CMS I'd suggest you check it out.

Re:Hm, an OpenSource CMS? (2, Informative)

cyberkreiger (463962) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557439)

Note that ONLY lists CMSes based on PHP/MySQL.

There are many good F/OSS CMSes that aren't based on PHP, and probably some that don't run on MySQL.

Re:Hm, an OpenSource CMS? (1)

wageslave (30013) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557515)

At least he does mention that in his article (which I'm sure you read completely).
"Most importantly, you can actually try the software. In many cases, you don't even need to install the software to get a demo. The site has demo versions of over 70 open-source LAMP based CMS including Drupal, Mambo, and Joomla, as described here."

Re:Hm, an OpenSource CMS? (4, Informative)

Black Perl (12686) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557895)

While this does seem to be the obvious answer, at least in name, this site is not what people expect. It is NOT dedicated to open source, and it does not have anything other than PHP apps, some of which are not CMSes.

If you know in advance you must be using PHP, and you're not sure whether you want a portal, CMS, weblog, etc, then this is a good site.

However, if you have other languages in mind, or are open to a good CMS in any language, you should check other sources. One good reference site is CMS Matrix [] . Another good source of CMS information is CMS Watch [] ; even though it concentrates on the entire spectrum of CMS systems (including commercial ones) it occasionally has very good articles or pointers to articles about open source products (like this one [] which I just found).

fp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14556911)

Use the Preview Button! Check those URLs! []

No Karma Bonus Post Anonymously

Best CMS (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14556960)

Two of the most popular and flexible open-source Content Management Systems are vi and emacs...

Re:Best CMS (1)

Caspian (99221) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557096)

Emacs sucks, though. Go with vi!

Re:Best CMS (3, Funny)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557288)

Emacs sucks, though.

Just add (setq suck nil) to your .emacs file.

Re:Best CMS (1)

cozzano (666947) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557171)

And vi is the best

Re:Best CMS (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557180)

I know that you were joking, but what I really want is a CMS where I just upload files to a folder on the server, and the CMS puts that content into the site. For example, use any OpenDocument Text file to create a page (pages). Content production would be a breeze. I think that eZ publish can do this, but I've never gotten the set up to work correctly.

Re:Best CMS (2, Interesting)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557587)

I wrote my own simple CMS that generates static files. There is a script that takes a file and uses its filename (or an optional command line argument) as the title and the contents as an article body (it assumes valid HTML, but it would be relatively easy to pop an OpenDocument->XHTML converter in the loop). These articles are inserted into an SQLite DB (with some meta-data), and every hour a cron job runs and outputs static pages. It would be trivially easy to add another cron job that iterates over each file in a directory, adds it to the DB and deletes it, which would give you what you seem to want. If you like, I can give you a copy of the source - it's a bit scruffy in places and has some hard-coded paths that shouldn't be there - either send me an email or post an email address here if you're interested. Or write your own - mine's only about 200 lines of php / Bourne shell scripts...

Re:Best CMS (1)

Elixon (832904) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557661)

Funny. I'm working on the feature of your dreams last two weeks... There will be even more! You can upload the file (for now only XML/HTML docs) into the tree using the FileManager and it's there! You can browser the folder server://modules and simply upload the module file and it will get installed automaticly. Remove one file representing the module and... the whole module gets uninstalled! :-)

Simply I'm working on the FileManger of your dreams where every folder have it's own hooks so different contextual operations can be triggered by the same actions... Removing the file from the folder with content docs will remove it from CMS, removing the file from modules will uninstall it from the kernel, removing the file from users folder will remove the user account... anythink you can imagine... :-) (all the file structures are pure virtual structures... but who will notice it? It looks so natural and it works... ;-)

Hm. Shame It isn't OSS... (anyway this feature will be revealed only partally in the first release).

Re:Best CMS (2, Informative)

ajs318 (655362) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558156)

Sounds to me like something you could do very easily with Kate. You just have to enter
in the file requester, give your password when asked, and you should be in! If you have a shell account, try fish:// instead -- this uses an SSH connection and so everything is encrypted. If you accidentally muck up the password entry, try entering
to fix it, but obviously don't do this if anyone is watching. The password will disappear when the URL is redisplayed.

This is not just confined to Kate -- it works with all the other KDE applications, too. You can even open an ftp or fish directory in Konqueror, and just drag-and-drop files into it.

Re:Best CMS (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558337)

There is work in progress to do this in Drupal (which I usually use) but it's not finalized at the moment.
There is a talk about it there : []
I too would find this useful.

Other CMS systems may be more advanced in that regard.

Best CMS-Frameworks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557325)

Maybe we should have a rant about CMS, much as we did when web frameworks were being discussed?

Do most people even need a CMS, and how's a CMS better than a good make and some CSS?

Re:Best CMS (2, Funny)

Elixon (832904) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557510)

I usually write new CMS in my old CMS (Emacs).

Emacs is good, but I didn't found the sufficient support of keystrokes like C-x C-e in modern browsers. That's why I didn't choose the Emacs for the front-end for my newest and brightest CMS. ;-)

But I hope that they will evolve to be at least as supportive for ten-strokes-in-one commands as the Emacs was twenty years ago... ;-)) I foreseen that the Web 4.0 will support all Emacs' fundamentals at least in "transitional" mode for the beginning. Refer to W3C eXHTML (Emacs-eXtensibleHyperTextMuleLisp) draft on [] .

Re:Best CMS (1)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557572)

Two of the most popular and flexible open-source Content Management Systems are vi and emacs...

Funny or not, I used them (and Notepad on occasion) successfully for years to manage content, using pages built on SSI. Toss in a couple of Perl scripts to move content around and there you were - just load content to be posted into a special directory structure, have the script look for content in that directory structure, and move content accordingly, archiving the current content. No fuss or muss, with only the occasional headache when someone would hand you some odd-sized piece of content that would mangle a page somehow.

Re:Best CMS (2, Funny)

garethwi (118563) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558109)

So, if I were to choose one of these, which one would be best? Vi or Emacs?

Killer features (3, Informative)

Lord Satri (609291) | more than 7 years ago | (#14556972)

We had to choose between many CMS for our specialized site. There are many CMS out there [] . Our choice ended with slashcode. slashcode is hard to install and configure, but the thing is, we considered (other may think otherwise) it has a "killing feature" that was worthed the pain in the long run: slashcode's moderation system.

Different CMS shares a lot of features, but some features are unique from one to another and might influence your choice...

Re:Killer features (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557039)

Our choice ended with slashcode.

You're such an asskisser. ;-)

Re:Killer features (1)

i.r.id10t (595143) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557243)

Easy to install slashcode... its using it and getting up to speed that hurts. Install is as easy as installing a fresh Debian stable then apt-get install slashcode.

Many good points (1, Redundant)

DTC (450482) | more than 7 years ago | (#14556975)

Another good resource for choosing an open source cms is this site [] . There, you can try most of the CMS offerings that are available.

Re:Many good points (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557236)

Informative? He repeated a link from the story! It's a meager troll at best. covers only few systems (2, Informative)

bergie (29834) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557305)

Unfortunately only showcases the lightweight CMSs, usually categorized under the low-end collaborative portals label.

Paul Everitt from Zope has a very good blog post about Open Source CMS positioning []

Trial and Error (4, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#14556985)

No matter how many people tell me that "Foo" is the best CMS, the only way that I found to really get a feel for them was to test them out myself. That included setting something up, testing the setup, and testing my abilities at updating the code.

I settled on Drupal only because it was the "hot thing" at the time and I enjoyed the fact that you could put php code into "blocks" and have it run custom code w/o much hassle. At the time I wasn't all that much interested in working on the actual code so the "blocks" allowed me to get some of my bash shell scripts onto the site w/o doing too much hacking.

Drupal for me too! (3, Informative)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557493)

I have selected Drupal [] , myself. I have looked at almost every other CMS out there, and after installing packages, switching languages, and other types of systems-mutilation that some packages require, I've found that Drupal makes my life as a web publisher much easier.

Druapl is also very configurable, even without having to write any code at all. It is all done with PHP, Apache, MySQL, which most GNU/Linux distributions seem to have already on the distribution media. Install your favorite distro, and Drupal fits in quite nicely.

CMSes are going the way of the dodo.. (3, Insightful)

gregalicious (949319) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557028)

The problem with CMSes is that updating them is slow. With some of the rich ones out there you're waiting too long to make a simple post or add some content (Tiki Pro, feature rich as it is suffers from this a lot but so do Joomla, Mambo etc). I think that the future (not that it's really pertinent to this question) is something local, a client running on every editor's PC, like NetObject's nPower (if it's any good, haven't used it).

Not for everything.... (1, Insightful)

millahtime (710421) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557119)

This is a very good solution for some circumstances. With software like NetObjects or Contribute you can do a lot. But there are still some places where a CMS is still more useful than those. Say, sites that are not static but community based. In those cases a CMS is still a very good solution.

Re:CMSes are going the way of the dodo.. (3, Interesting)

saltydogdesign (811417) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557152)

Sounds like you are describing a sort of crippled Dreamweaver, which is what all this CMS business was designed to escape. At the risk of causing all the anti-Ajax people to have an aneurism, I think that when CMS's start adopting Ajax techniques, their usability quotient will go up pretty sharply. To my mind this is the sort of application for which Ajax is made -- largely internal functions in which you have some control or at least knowledge of the hardware being used. Moreover, updates and changes can be made in one place, rather than maintaining 50 copies of an app.

Re:CMSes are going the way of the dodo.. (1)

Washizu (220337) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557174)

"I think that the future (not that it's really pertinent to this question) is something local, a client running on every editor's PC, like NetObject's nPower (if it's any good, haven't used it)."

I highly disagree. If you're able to get by with that then you either...

1. Don't have much content to manage
2. Don't have to worry (too much) about training new editors
3. Don't have to worry about integration with other business systems

CMS solutions are not easy to implement and rarely do everything that you want, but putting that much power in editors hands will inevitably get disorganized. Maybe I don't know that much about nPower, but that's my initial impression.

Re:CMSes are going the way of the dodo.. (1)

TheSync (5291) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557319)

Real web sites have caches in front of their CMS to enhance speed. I've seen several Zope/Squid combos that do fine.

Re:CMSes are going the way of the dodo.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14558228)

I call bullshit.

Content Management Systems can be updated very quickly.

Here's [] a little flash demo of adding a new article to a joomla [] site(the demo's about 1meg of flash)

Etomite (2, Interesting)

BuR4N (512430) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557032)

We have been using Etomite for a while now and are very happy with it.

Good points so far:

- Simple to setup
- Easy to develop templates for, our template ( [] took a work day to put together.
- The back end is easy to use and provides nice editing features directly in the browser.


- If you are looking for something that can do "everything" and be extended left and right, Etomite is not for you.

Re:Etomite (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557276)

I looked and looked and looked but couldn't find the licence they are providing. Reading some of the forum messages gave me the impression that this was mostly a closed system. Also version 0.6 appears to have a "call home" feature, very nasty.

Re:Etomite (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557421)

Now this is interesting, the "legal" link states that it is GPL, with no obligations etc. Also it states that support is free of charge, without any obligations. Then on the main page, it goes and states that
Removal of the copyright notice and the link, without the permission of the author, may affect or even cause us to deny any support requests you make.
In the forums, about retracting 0.6.0 from the downloads, the mention "pirated copies and unauthorized rebranding. How can you pirate a GPL application and all GPL applications can be branched and rebrandedas long as it doesn't violate the copyright - although strictly it isn't very ethical nor nice. They are clearly somewhat confused about what they provide.

Re:Etomite (2, Informative)

nublaii (713590) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557423)

Hi there

Take a look at the bottom of the page: []

They even tell you about the 'call home' feature, and they also inform you that it can be removed.

Re:Etomite (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557518)

- If you are looking for something that can do "everything" and be extended left and right, Etomite is not for you.

For that, my friends, you need to call Dolemite [] with his all girl army of Kung-Fu killers!

Tech Support. (2, Informative)

TCFOO (876339) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557061)

Seth Gotlieb made a good point about companies wanting tech support. Many Companies want a formal tech support solution where they can call someone on the phone to ask questions. I think many of the smaller open source projects are over looked because of the lack of phone support; however, some of the larger projects such as Open Office do provide tech support and are used by more companies because of it.

Structure (4, Interesting)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557094)

The easiest way to quickly filter CMS's is by looking at the navigation structure. Do you want a "tree" structure (like most corporate websites) or do you want a "module" (like slashdot, nuke and other community sites).

There are other choices that can quickly filter CMS's, but many of the choices have alternatives or can be hacked around. Only rarely will you find a CMS that can handle both navigation structures.

Dokuwiki ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557098)

just trash all those complicated CMSes.

Just use Dokuwiki ! []

Heck we even use it for our corporate site !

Re:Dokuwiki ! (4, Insightful)

CynicalGuy (866115) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557143)

Please no. Wiki != CMS. I really hate the current trend of open source projects putting all their documentation in a wiki.

How to install SomeProject - This article is a stub, but you can help by writing it!

No thanks.

Re:Dokuwiki ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557213)

I'm not talking about a public wiki, but a "corporate" one. The only difference with the traditional CMS is the "edit on the page" functionnality. My users (and fellow coworkers) just love it, and it greatly improved our site's vitality.

Wikis as CMS (1)

Crisses (776475) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557860)

With meticulous care, a wiki works as a CMS specifically because you can edit pages and create groups quickly.

In some wiki programs, you can turn off the special links for CamelCase words. You can make the links have no special formatting. You can have them pull up a 404 error page instead. Or whatever your little programmer heart desires. I create wikis, remove the edit links, password the edit forms, and since I'm the sole caretaker I make sure there are no dead-end links. To anyone else it looks like a website. Period. Me? I get to make new pages quickly, not bother with start/end tags (yes, I know proper HTML/css -- but I'm also a writer, not just a designer or php programmer! Let me get on with writing!). Best part: with a real HTML/css template, they don't look like yet another cookie-cutter PHP-Nuke site.

Wiki, why not? (1)

beofli (584044) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558329)

> Please no. Wiki != CMS. I really hate the current trend of open source projects putting all their documentation in a wiki.

Why not? Wiki is the only tool that really allows multiple shared views on your (collaborative) information. Everyone can change and add his own view (page with tree of links for example).

Today, I put all my information at work in wiki pages, with the exception of passwords. The Wiki tool I use (and developed myself [] ) has a flexible access rights system plus treats an attachment as a wiki-document as well. Unfortunately most open source wiki-tools are aimed at public websites and not corporate use where access rights are important, even in a closed intranet.

Another nice thing about Wiki tools is that it merges nicely with other tools (mail, etc.), as long as they have an HTTP interface (even Lotus Notes has that).

Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (0, Troll)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557104)

I've set up several such systems for various groups people, and the one thing I've found to work best is to avoid those which use PHP. While PHP may be good for some uses, I don't think it offers the security, stability and reliability inherent for sites that must maintain a high degree of uptime.

It's quite a hassle, and very embarassing, to set up a system for somebody, only to have a security warning come out a week later. Their system needs upgrading only a week after being initially set up, and that reflects badly on whoever set it up.

As such, I've tended to go with Java-, Python-, Perl- or Ruby-based solutions, just because I feel I can trust those platforms more than I can trust PHP.

Re:Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (0, Flamebait)

Decker-Mage (782424) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557199)

I couldn't agree more. I watch the march of the security notices on a daily, sometimes even hourly, basis and PHP has real problems as do the applications based on it. It's a real pain keeping both PHP and PHP-apps up to date and you never know when an update to any of them will break something else which means you have to test each patch as it comes down the pike. I have enough on my plate as it is.

Re:Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (3, Insightful)

saltydogdesign (811417) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557202)

My bullshit detector is making a hell of a lot of noise.

Security is a function of the developer, not the language. To be sure, some languages have inherent security features that can help, but if you honestly think it's that much more difficult to muck up a Perl program than a PHP program, I've got some land near Baghdad you might be interested in purchasing.

Re:Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557411)

Shock news! CyricZ bashes PHP! Claims perl is god's gift to man!

Re:Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (1)

jrister (922621) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557590)

PHP is no mor eor less secure than any other programming language. As someone else just mentioned.

I have had to argue this point for months with the CIO/CEO of my company, who were under the same impression. They had the idea in their heads that PHP caused all kinds of havoc, from security issues, to search engine optimisation issues, etc.

Eventually I convinced them that its all in how a language is implemented, how the code is written, and how various requests and such are handled.

The vast majority of PHP-related security vulnerabilities are the result of a variable that was either deprecated, but never removed from the code, or just a check variable that the developers never thought anyone would find and abuse.

The bottom line is, whenever you deal with any kind of external data coming into your program, in PHP, C++, Java, VB, or anything else, if you do not check the sanity of that data coming in, you will have serious problems.

Use whatever programming language you like, just remember to SANITIZE ALL USER DATA/QUERY DATA before processing!

Re:Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (4, Insightful)

oni (41625) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557839)

Another big reason that you see so many PHP vulnerabilities is that PHP is free and easy, and so lots of (frankly) amateurs pick it up and write wizz-bang apps with it. The reason I call them amateurs is that they really have no idea and usually don't even know or care to write code with security in mind. Many, perhaps most newbie programmers think that bugs are something that happen to other people who aren't as smart as they are.

So basically, you have some well-intentioned but not experienced person with a good idea, and they sit down and hack together an application while learning PHP at the same time. Do they even know the definition of "SQL Injection Vulnerability" - probably not.

And a lot of the issues that I see on places like bugtraq are application specific, and I usually haven't even heard of the app. "The PHP app, Lyrus Extreme version 3.2 has a remote exploit." In your head, you subconsciously tally that up as "one more PHP problem" and if someone is gathering statistics on PHP problems by searching bugtraq for the string PHP, this one will be counted. But really, it's not a PHP problem, it's just an amateur programmer.

Re:Avoid PHP for Web-accessible CMS installations. (1)

ooh456 (122890) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557750)

Yeah and avoid CyricZ for sensible comments.

Too Many (4, Interesting)

dkuntze (867585) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557105)

I think the OpenSource CMS market is getting too flooded... Do we really need another PHP/MySQL CMS? I know some people who are developing a commercial CMS product. I think they are crazy, since there are PLENTY of free CMS packages out there. If there is not need for a full blown enterprise CMS, why would you pay for a proprietary "non-free" application? How about a list of Open Source Enterprise Content Management systems? That would defintely be a shorter list.

Re:Too Many (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557157)

TYPO3 present himself as an Enterprise CMS. More than 15 books written on the subject is a good sign of adoption!

Some big names using it (Volkswagen, DHL, General Electric, Stanford) []

Features: []

Re:Too Many (1)

dslauson (914147) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557693)

Here's the thing:

I worked for a state agency. I did some web development for them, but ultimately I wasn't the guy calling the shots on the web site. They evaluated a bunch of CMS's when it came time for a redesign, but they ended up shelling out a ton of money for Microsoft's CMS because they were worried about support. I've long since moved on, but I'm still scratching my head about it.

It's the same reason commercial software will always have a place. Those of us with confidence in our skills are happy to try something free and cool and new and cutting (or bleeding)-edge, but managers just want to know that something's going to work, and if not, there's a number they can call.

Re:Too Many (1)

mspohr (589790) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557943)

Your friends would be better off starting a business to provide professional support for one of the FOSS CMS systems. It's stupid to reinvent the wheel in this area (especially when their wheel will probably not be as good as the ones that already exist).

Too few (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558301)

I think the opposite. I think we need more open source CMS systems.

My first criterion for an open source CMS was that it not be based on PHP, because PHP is a bloated security-hole-ridden crappy language.

My second criterion was that it support something other than MySQL--both for licensing reasons, and because MySQL doesn't meet the basic standards of database integrity you'd expect from a relational database.

Once I'd imposed those two criteria, there were only a few options, and I didn't like any of them very much.

Bes CMS? (1)

Delifisek (190943) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557107)

Of course mine, I tought eveyone write one for himself...

No, I'm not kidding.

Non open-source CMS no good ? (1)

loom (35551) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557115)

I know I digress a bit, but sometimes an open-source solution is not the choice for everyone. A lot of clients I talk to have no technical knowledge, and want a CMS to be able to update the website easily. They have no idea how to install it or to maintain it. Some of them prefer "buying" a product, than buying lots of services.

Then again, it really depends on the demographic. If it's a student putting up a website and he has all the time in the world, I guess an open source CMS is the preferred solution.

Of course, I'm biased, I work for this [] CMS vendor :) But it has a license you can pay in cash or code []

Re:Non open-source CMS no good ? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557343)

Good commercial CMSs exist but I don't consider your product a good CMS...

It is slow and you can't have 10 editors working at the same time without melting the server...

Also the JSP is put inside the templates... Your templates can kill the server, wow!

Next product please !

Re:Non open-source CMS no good ? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557353)

I strongly disagree here. I have used Jahia before, and the money the company paid and the time it invested to get everything working would be enough to have an Open-Source CMS almost completely rewritten. Of course, the demands were quite big in that case - so an administrator was needed as well who needs deep knowledge. IMHO, Jahia is not targetted to the "small websites"?
In fact, many OS CMS, like zope/plone or typo3, to name some bigger ones, are quite userfriendly to the end-user (who is normally an editor.) Of course, the administrators need to be trained and experienced as well, but I am sure this is the same with commercial CM systems.


Re:Non open-source CMS no good ? (2, Informative)

ManUMan (571203) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557591)

I understand what you are saying, but there are other options instead of setting up your own server running Linux, Apache, MySQL, Php, etc. There are many ISP's and webhosting companies that will do almost all of the work for you. I worked with a friend to setup a website for our chruch and our ISP uses a web based admin interface that installed Joomla, configured MySQL for us. All we did was click "install joomla". Additionally, checking that interface periodically give us the opportunity to install updates with one click.

Not that everyone here needs that much help, but it sure beats having to maintain servers for friends, associates, or organizations who don't have the time or skills to do it themselves.

Re:Non open-source CMS no good ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14558006)

Your oppinion has nothing to do with open/closed source software. You are talking about what product customers want, I don't see your point. I can sell a product based on opensource software as a drop-in into an existing organisation. Just as I can sell one based on closed source software.

What difference does it make if the code is closed or open? Or should I say, why is closed source any better?

opensourcecms (0, Redundant)

MAPBuH (749005) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557120)

Checkout [] . Very usefull, you can try many of them, without installing.

Drupal gets my vote (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557128)

There are a lot of good CMS platforms out there, but I am going with Drupal [] - it is the one that the FOUNDER of the web uses (Tim Berners-Lee). It is MUCH more than a 'blogging' software - it has many great pluggins, and Google appears to think it is #1 - they donated $49,500 to drupal [] - which is more than any other CMS got. invaluable (2, Informative)

jbarr (2233) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557147)

I found the [] site to be invaluable when choosing a replacement CMS for my site [] . Its demos and resource links were very, very helpful. In a relatively short time, I was able to browse and try a number of CMS options. once I came up with a "short list", it was just a matter of following the links to the various CMS sites, downloading the installation packages, and testing them out. (That is what took the time!. [] works as a nice Sandbox environment that auto-refreshes every hour or so (ie: each CMS is automatically reset to a clean install, so though you lose anything you try out, you can't mess things up.)

It's a great way to get an initial feel for various CMS's in one tight place.

-Jim []

CMS is less important than people (3, Insightful)

dptalia (804960) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557151)

You can have the best tool in the world but unless you train the people using it in the proper proceedures and process, then it doesn't matter. And someone has to enforce their behavior.

That being said, I like a comercial solution: ClearCase, (paired with ClearQuest) as it allows me to enforce a certain percentage of behavior through the tool. And when you have people who feel it's their duty to violate process because it "won't work" (they didn't write it) it's nice to have the tool lock them down.

Re:CMS is less important than people (3, Informative)

jelevy01 (574941) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557548)

CMS != Configuration Management tools.

ClearQuest is bug tracking (like bugzilla), ClearCase is versioning (like CVS or Subversion)

Totally wrong group of tools.

On that note, I happen to be in a RedDot training class as I write this... Their tool (while not free) is super easy to use. I am traditionally trained in Documentum.

One pet peeve is when people condsider things like Nuke or SlashCode CMS systems. They are really just blogs in my opinion. Not nearly as sophisticated as a real CMS system.

Re:CMS is less important than people (1)

Elixon (832904) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557835)

It is a very good point about the training people... I'm the core developer for four years for one American company that develops very successful enterprise CMS. It is VERY powerful and fully configurable solution that has everything the CMS should have: eCommerce, CRM, CMS, RMS, XForms, ... But the strength is also the weakness.

Have you ever dealt with customers that want to buy a dog but they choose to buy an elephant because it looked bigger and smarter and stronger? I did. At the result (if I use the same words) they tend to use the elephant as the dog...

I read some calls for "OSS Enterprise CMS" above. I think that it sounds great but the real life and real needs are simply different. Believe me - sometimes the "ENTERPRISE" (bells and whistles comes here) solution disappoints the customers more then "low-end" solution.

Re:CMS is less important than people (1)

foo fighter (151863) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558066)


Some admin here got sold on Microsoft Sharepoint and set up a server internally. It's such a joke. No one uses it because 1) there's been no training, 2) it's not obvious at all what benefit you'd get from actually using it, and 3) email, IM, and the corporate shared folder hierarchy work.

Until you get people trained on how to use it and understanding why they should invest their time in it, it's not going to be worth the investment.

Zope-Based CMS Products (3, Informative)

Feneric (765069) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557185)

There's been an ongoing discussion about this same topic over at Macintouch [] .

Personally I'm a fan of the Zope [] / CMF [] series of content management systems; the built-in CMF is quite powerful and flexible (and actually fairly efficient -- don't be fooled by the slowness of some CMSs built on top).

There are many such systems. There are some in private use (like [] and [] . There are also some commercial options (like Icoya [] ). Most though are free and open source, like Plone [] , Infrae Silva [] , and Nuxeo CPS [] . Each has its own focus and tends to do certain things better than the others. Each has its own special plug-ins and extensions, but since they all utilize the same underlying base framework, it's usually a doable thing (although typically not trivial) to port a product from one to another.

The capabilities of Zope's built-in CMF are also good enough that it's not at all unreasonable to fashion one's own CMS on top of it if none of the existing products seem to suit one's own particular needs.

Re:Zope-Based CMS Products (1)

Ranger (1783) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557709)

Personally I'm a fan of the Zope / CMF series of content management systems; the built-in CMF is quite powerful and flexible (and actually fairly efficient -- don't be fooled by the slowness of some CMSs built on top).

We used Zope at our college and after much research decided to go with Plone to update it. I was a little leary of Zope's ZODB at first, but I like it now, though I really like MySQL. I looked at the myriad PHP CMS solutions and none of them did what I wanted them to do. the Python CMS market has very few players whereas the PHP CMS market has dozens and dozen to choose from and I would say fragmented.

I discovered that I could do in PHP what took far longer to do in Perl though I'm a big Perl fan. I'm still learning Python, Zope, and Plone but it's worth it.

For big projects Plone is a good choice. It's highly modular and you can override or rewrite the modules to customize it. For personal websites WordPress is a good choice. It does everything I need and can be used as a poor man's CMS though it is primarily a blogging tool.

For Java Freaks (4, Informative)

ckmajor (671798) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557188)

There are quite a few Java based open-source CMS like Magnolia ( [] ), Apache Lenya ( [] etc. An exhaustive list of Java based open-source CMS can be find here: nt-systems []

Re:For Java Freaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557415)

My problem is that I've tried ALOT of different java-based open source CMS systems, and every single one of them has felt either unfinished, slow or near impossible to extend.

Granted, the source is there, so perhaps I should just shut up and get working on it.

Re:For Java Freaks (1)

darjen (879890) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557847)

Thanks for the link, we've been using Magnolia but might end up trying out Lenya. The site with the list you posted isn't working though.

Drupal is best (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557193)

There are a lot of good CMS platforms out there, but I am going with Drupal [] - it is the one that the FOUNDER of the web uses (Tim Berners-Lee). It is MUCH more than a 'blogging' software - it has many great pluggins, and Google appears to think it is #1 - they donated $49,500 to drupal [] - which is more than any other CMS got.

Open Source on MS Platform (1)

christoc (949327) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557261)

If you want a good open source CMS on the microsoft platform (boo hiss from the /. crowd right?) check out []

cms (1)

Gadgycough (937773) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557308)


Re:cms (1)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557537)

I have found that actually having PHPNuke installed, invites kiddies to crack my host. Good idea at the time, but not anymore.

Re:cms (1)

Gadgycough (937773) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557769)

Oh, how horrid of them!

CMS Made Simple (2, Interesting)

lemkepf (727820) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557315)

I've been using CMS Made Simple [] for a while. It works very well and is very easy to use. My "not at all computer savy" clients love it and it's worked well for me too. Simple installation, simple page creation, simple menus, simple templating... yea, it's just simple. :)

Re:CMS Made Simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557619)

I'm using this as well for most new client sites I create. It offers the best solution for non-techs to be able to edit their own site. If they can use word, they can create and manage sites.

I'm also using it for my own personal site, but I generally switch CMS's about every 6 months.

Re:CMS Made Simple (1)

rasjani (97395) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557872)

Another yey vote for cmsmadesimple.

PHPwcms is excellent (2, Interesting)

rtilghman (736281) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557316)

I went through this process at the beginning of last year. Downloaded, set-up, and tested multiple CMS products. I ended up going with PHPwcms given its simplicity and user friendly design, its amongthe best solutions out there for standard content sites. CMSMadeSimple was another similar and good solution.

That said what CMS you choose - open source or otherwise - is entirely predicated on the project. Got a community site? Take a look at Drupal or Mambo, maybe something smaller if it works. Need a small content site? Check out PHPwcms, CMS Made Simple, or LucidCMS. Someone else mentioned Etomite, but Etomite is quirky, visually unsophisticated (the admin tool looks a little garbagy), and lacks some of the flexibility provided by other tools.

PHPwcms' management of content as small objects that can be easily called or reused in secondary locations (allowing you to have a repository of "global" content was a huge argument in favor of it for my project. Its only major weakness is the lack of robust entitlement capabilities... its been on the books for a year, but no one has developed it further... you can only set-up an all Admins or vry weak content administrators (who can't edit content).


My Plug For Geeklog (3, Informative)

phpsocialclub (575460) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557321)

I am going to put my plug in for Geeklog. []

I use is for the base of many commercial web sites, utilizing the WYSISYG (FCKeditor) page editor and the news manager. It provides an excellent frame work for developing sites on top of, especially if you need a basic website with some extras thrown in.

It also runs sites such as [] and []

By changing the templates or config to eliminate links to the parts you do not need, (example, links pages, polls, etc), you can use the user login, edit, and admin parts to allow your web clients to edit their own pages, saving you the trouble and saving them money in the long run. The templates are completely separate from the code, allowing you to design graphics for the site separate from the code.

Updates are pretty easy if you keep your custom code out of the main install, a process that is pretty easy if you put your code in lib-custom.php. The code is well written and clear enough for a person with basic php knowledge to hack if they like

The software is all php/mysql and run efficiently on most linux shared hosts. There are also a wide variety of plugins.

The forum and developers are responsive to support requests.

just my two cents from a fan of geeklog,

it is also available for demo at []

Re:My Plug For Geeklog (1)

68kmac (471061) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557507)

Thanks for the plug. Unfortunately, we're having DNS issues at this very moment. Makes us look bad, but doesn't actually have anything to do with the software.

* sigh * Murphy in full effect ...

bye, Dirk

"Best" (5, Insightful)

ukpyr (53793) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557436)

I'm about 3/4 through evaluating cms products for my small company. I've read about all the major opensource ones, and even went into the commercial realm. I personally installed/evaled 7 or 8 (I didn't always take notes, some were already losers )

Here are some things that greatly helped me:

There is NO awesome templating system. If you have web designers and you have programmers, don't expect something to drop into place with little hassle. We have been deploying html + mod_perl applications using a simple in-house templating system. This is actually elegantly simple compared to some of the systems I looked at. It's all very relative to the staff you have. Personally a JSP taglib solution works best for us (so far)

There is no one "best" system. People claiming X or Y is clearly superior are either not deploying CMS for a group of users, lack experience as a developer/designer/user, or are just crazy. I know of a Major Company(tm) who management told to the developers use X system for some inscrutable reason after reviewing a lead dev's evaluation list. While on paper X is great, there are a few very annoying problems for the template designers, and they don't have the mandate to go modify the code, which is open.

Part of the evaluation MUST include every level of person using the product. Developers,designers,managment (reports n such), and end users (archetypal secretaries). I tried to let people know what was happening a few times a week with my evaluations, keeping a blog would be great maybe. Other people accepting your choice is super-duper-key. I got some great feedback from docs on a few occasions that helped me steer my choice.

Get a clear set of requirements and wish list items established early on. CMS systems can be minimal or very very comprehensive, it's easy to get lost in nth's implementation of webDAV or whatever.

Blog systems may have elements of CMS in them, but are not (usually) full blown CMS systems. and other great places for data lump all the products together. In my opinion there are about a dozen open source products that are clearly way beyond the blog.

Last piece of advice which you won't hear very often: if you think you may not need a CMS solution you probably don't! If you have a single site, with some updating you need to do frequently or maybe you want to have a team of designers working on it, check out subversion first and maybe that alone will give you enough of what you want. If you just need templating check out apache's tapestry or cocoon projects.

Go Native among the Users (5, Insightful)

handy_vandal (606174) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557868)

Part of the evaluation MUST include every level of person using the product. Developers,designers,managment (reports n such), and end users (archetypal secretaries).

This is so true. End user input is critical, they will make or break the project.

My dad (rest his soul) was lead programmer (maybe the only programmer, I dunno) for the Star Tribune newspaper, back in the seventies. I was a teenager at the time, he taught me about For-Next loops and so on. Along with the coding, he emphasized:

The smart programmer ...

(a) Listens and nods his head while Management says "We want this, We want that" ... (chances are this is all wrong);
(b) Sits down with end users (secretaries, etc.) for a while, every day, staying out of their way but watching them work, and asking the occasional question;
(c) Figures out what the end users really want, need, will accept;
(d) Codes for the end user, then spins the thing so Management thinks they're getting what they (foolishly) asked for.

Dad called this "going native among the users" (he took his degree in anthropology).


The only perfect CMS (2, Insightful)

kook44 (937545) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557476)

The only perfect CMS: Content gets put into XML with editor of your choice, you pull content into your app either at runtime, or make some custom automated publishing script. Any packaged CMS will be way to bloated, and will be a nightmare to integrate into your architecture. Most likely - you will finding yourself bending your app around the CMS.

Re:The only perfect CMS (2, Insightful)

junkmailtrapenator (912095) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557825)

Sounds like Bricolage [] or Krang [] would be pretty close to prefect for you.

DotNetNuke (1)

tetranz (446973) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557581)

DotNetNuke [] Growing very quickly, high quality, well managed and well documented.

WordPress+LightPress (1)

Tihy (948976) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557624)


- easy to install
- easy to administer
- clean
- faster then Drupal, Serendipity, TextPattern, ...
- php+mysql based [] []

Determine Criteria Before Selecting Tool. (4, Informative)

naelurec (552384) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557627)

A CMS by definition is a content management system. As a result, it is crucially important to determine the content you want the system to manage and how you want the system to manage the content.

A few starter questions:

1. What content do I have or expect to have? (web pages? documents? discussion forums? image galleries?)

2. Where does this content come from? (departments? users? myself? Internet sources? databases? third-party apps?)

3. How should the system manage this content? (workflows? editors? fine-grained access control?)

4. How should this content be displayed? (xhtml/css? pdf? print/paper? cell phones? xml? rss?)

5. How much separation of content and design do you require?

6. How extensible should the CMS be? (in-house development? modular? out-sourced development? completely opensource?)

7. What are the administrative requirements? (*nix? mysql/postgresql? apache? php? python?)

8. What is the anticipated load and can the CMS manage that? (quite different from a 5,000 hits/day site vs 20,000,000 hits/day)

9. What is the estimated lifetime of the website? What changes to the site are forseeable and should be considered?

Assuming your doing something more than a personal blog site, most likely pre-existing workflow processes and organizational resources already exist and those should be analyzed when making a CMS choice.

Don't get overly focused on initial setup times. The cost of administration, development and resources will far outweigh the initial setup costs on all but the smallest of sites.

di3k (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14557675)

Content Management (1)

Seanasy (21730) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557929)

Most Open Source CMSs aren't much more than blogs or forums on steroids. Very few deal with real content management problems. I still haven't found one that I'm crazy about. I'm trying to work with Apache Lenya [] right now but it takes a lot of work. Zope/Plone is similar. The power is there for both of them but the initial learning curve is steep.

Oh, and my biggest pet peeve for any CMS site (or any site) is unreadable URLs. It's OK for some applications but for a site where people will be returning to the same page frequently, it should have a sane URL.

Not very in depth (1)

lux55 (532736) | more than 7 years ago | (#14557983)

I was hoping from the summary for a bit more depth to the article, maybe a few pages in length. Good start at least. There are many differences to consider when comparing open source vs commercial CMS (ex: open source CMS developers tend to be quicker about embracing standards), in addition to the general open source vs commercial software differences.

There's also a lot of difference between types of CMS, from blog-level packages to easy site builders and Mambo/Joomla-esque packages which are missing any real enterprise-ready features such as versioning, workflow, and fine-grained access control (more advanced than Unix permissions please!), to mid-level packages which vary greatly within themselves as to their focus (marketing/SEO, publishing, or traditional content/document management), to high-end enterprise packages. There's also a big difference between a CMS that includes a content server/content publisher and one that doesn't. An easy comparison of these in the open source world would be Midgard vs any of the Midgard-based CMS packages. The no-content-server packages are more flexible, but require a lot more implementation effort as well.

Really, it comes down to defining your goals. And often people find that some commercial CMS still solves them better than the open source ones, while many find the opposite to be true. Different goals. (note: I'm the lead developer for the open source Sitellite CMS [] that also has a commercial counterpart -- dual-licensed).

A few articles I found interesting related to CMS selection:

Tire Kicking and CMS Shopping []
Will your chosen CMS vendor go bust? [] (1)

foo fighter (151863) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558012)

Is it just me, or is getting a lot of press here today? What's up with that?

It's interesting that the Australian publication has so much Open Source coverage.

Speed? Scalability? (1)

SpunOne (222681) | more than 7 years ago | (#14558308)

Do any of the OpenSource CMS's scale well? For the longest time, I was going to release the one I wrote simply so I could give it the name OpenSTFU. What I discovered is that a lot of programming compromises have to be made to create a CMS that's flexible enough to fit the needs of many people. I eventually gave up trying to make something for mass-consumption, and kept my CMS private. There would easily be three times the amount of code involved to make it a reasonable choice for other people to use. In my experience, flexibility was synonymous with slow, since extra CPU cycles were needed on every page. The CMS suffered from trying to be a Swiss Army knife.

I'm sure some of that can be fixed with better programming and design, but is that happening with the free, modern CMS?
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