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Content Management Forum

This 33 message thread spans 2 pages: 33 ( [1] 2 > >     
CMS - Content Management Systems Comparison

 4:35 pm on Dec 11, 2009 (gmt 0)

Can everyone list which CMS they are using and why they like it, what feature they like the most and why they are using it. Basically what advantage do you think the CMS you are using has over others.

Ill start myself:

Im using Drupal for my sites. I like the many Modules and applications it has to offer. I was told by a friend that website X uses this CMS to build their website and so I did some research on what Drupal is and basically liked what it had to offer. Before that I was doing plain Dreamweaver and HTML. So my first CMS experience was with Drupal.

I havent used other CMS's but I think from what I heard that Drupal has more modules than others.



 4:57 pm on Dec 11, 2009 (gmt 0)

I use a custom CMS (made by me) for a few sites, and I also use bbPress for some other sites.

I've used Drupal in the past. It is a solid CMS.


 8:59 pm on Dec 11, 2009 (gmt 0)

I heard today that Joomla and Concrete5 are two other top CMS's.
I had heard of Joomla, but never Concrete5. Apparently Concrete5 is moving up in usage and ranking very fast. At least thats what I was told by the registrar I use.

MaxiMillianos: do you also code and build modules or when you say you built your own CMS its the core CMS that you made and then you transfer and use modules built by others?


 12:19 am on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

I've been using MODx primarily for its ease of use. My favorite part of using it is that I can easily convert any template I find or create myself for use in it. I find that overall it is very easy to add content and I don't have to spend a lot of time getting a new page online. I will admit, however, that I haven't used it to its fullest. It does have more capabilities than I need at this time.

Previously I was hand coding my pages in notepad. Tedious to say the least. I've also noticed that if I view the source code of a MODx page, it is identical to a hand coded page. No funny stuff going on at all.

I haven't yet been able to get my head wrapped around Drupal. I get overwhelmed by their documentation and quickly find myself lost in it. I intend to keep trying to learn it as time permits.


 12:25 am on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

I've used several and have vicarious experiences with another (i.e. my wife uses it). The "why" varies with the task.

- built my own - a few of these because I didn't like anything out there or I wanted some special function. I haven't done this in a long time.

- Drupal - I tried a bunch and the underlying code was often poor. I always test with PHP error reporting set to E_ALL and any open source app that fails that doesn't get installed. It's a sign of other problems in my opinion. Drupal was the only open source CMS I could find that even tried to meet that test at the time. Others were terrible, but Joomla for example has been totally rewritten since that time and I hear very good things about the now not so new Joomla core.

I liked the level of abstraction that Drupal offered. For example, taxonomy, URL structure, menus, breadcrumbs can all be independent of each other. It might take some sweat, but you can build the site you want to, not the site Drupal has in mind.

I also liked that, unlike some other systems, it had powerful theming, but without requiring you to learn another language (Gallery, for example, used Smarty, which always seems utterly pointless to me).

Lots of flexibility. At the time, at least, Joomla had whacky limitations, like you could only have your taxonomy go three levels deep. Huh? So Electronics -> Computers -> Laptops and then you were stuck!

I could go on, but all that said, now there are so many quality competitors, if I were starting over, who knows what I would default to. I think many have matched Drupal in the areas I mention, but through force of habit, I default to Drupal for sites that will be complex.

And for other sites... Wordpress - if you want a blog that's just a blog, it's simple and easy. If you keep it up to date, recent versions are reasonably secure (most security breaches are with out of date versions). Of course you can do a lot more with WP, but if it gets more complex like that, I personally go for Drupal, but I know another member here (lorax) has tried both Drupal and Wordpress and he came down on the other side and defaults to Wordpress unless he really has a good reason not to, and he has certainly built some quality sites on that platform.

Otherwise, I have played with a bunch. So many are good, but it depends on your needs. Concrete5 would be great for a brochure site with content pages, maybe some forms to collect user data of various sorts (they have a great form tool). ModX is cool. Silverstreak, CMS Made Simple (or Made Easy?). I know people who like Wikimedia. And obviously the old standards like Expression Engine and Joomla.


 12:50 am on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

MaxiMillianos: do you also code and build modules or when you say you built your own CMS its the core CMS that you made and then you transfer and use modules built by others?

I guess you could say that. I built the site (custom) and I built tools to manage the content (admin tools, etc). So in essence, it is a custom CMS. It is 100% custom coded, so I don't use module from other projects. I build my own add-ons, etc.

If you are capable, I recommend this route. You have the most flexibility. However you can just as easily start with an open-source project and run with it as well, customizing it for your future needs.

If you are not the developer type, then definitely stick with Joomla or Drupal, etc. They are commonly used and very capable CMS systems.


 1:15 am on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

Except for blogs (we use wordpress for those), we've been developing exclusively in ModX for more than two years.

It gives us absolute control and flexibility over every element of site design and information architecture and our clients can easily modify and add content to their sites themselves.

I haven't played with it much yet, but a relatively new release also gives the capability to customize the manager side, so that can be tweaked for each client or for your company.


 3:10 am on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

I've been using MODx primarily for its ease of use.
Ive never heard of it before. All I heard of is Joomla, MovableType, Drupal, WordPress and maybe 1 or two others. I didnt know there are so many CMS's out there. I did a google search and landed on a Wikipedia page that had a comparison table.

The "why" varies with the task.
I thought the tasks were defined by their modules/add ons. Other than that the core CMS shouldnt really offer anything different... Maybe the way its coded and SEO benefits, right?

If you are capable, I recommend this route. You have the most flexibility. However you can just as easily start with an open-source project and run with it as well, customizing it for your future needs.
No, Im not a developer. But it has been over a year that I have been using Drupal and I love it. I was just curious if there are other good CMS's that compete and are at the same level. I am developing a new site and was considering using another CMS so I can learn something different but I guess now that im running 4 sites with Drupal I might as well invest in becoming an expert in one CMS.


 1:11 pm on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

LOL - Hey ergo my friend - I'll convince you of WordPress's superiority over Drupal yet. ;)

All kidding aside, I classify CMSs in 2 different ways: 1) for those who can code and are looking to automate or just need a framework to build on and 2) for those who have little coding knowledge and want something nearly bullet proof and reliable. Bare in mind my perspective is as a INet services provider.

I do think WordPress is a good to great tool for most of the websites - NOT just blogs - on the planet. In the hands of someone who knows how to customize WordPress (especially with the right theme), it can be an amazingly flexible tool. There are two key areas of development I haven't tried with it yet - adding shopping cart features/functions and modifying the admin area by building my own plug-in. Both of these seem pretty easy and I'm likely to try one or both of them in the coming year.

The catch to my claim is that most website owners are not coders nor want/ought to be. WordPress creates a nice boxed in and safe platform for them to manage their website in while doing little harm. It gives me the ability to create something for a client that allows them to do what they want without having to pay me or a code monkey to do the ongoing updates. AND creates recurrent revenue for my business through maintenance contracts that allow me to keep the core files and plugins up to date. So there are multiple reason I chose to go with WordPress.

I didn't like Drupal's taxonomy structure nor the Admin GUI. Too convoluted for clients. Joomla's isn't much better and I can't speak about MODx. The WordPress GUI is very simple and easy to use. But the more complex the customizations, the more details have to remembered in the admin - though I'm working on how to make this simpler for the end user.

As a CMS for a coder type, Drupal Joomla or MODx might be a better fit though I still prefer WP. It took me a number of years to decide on a CMS to use for my business because several key issues hadn't been resolved by any of the CMS projects:

  • ease and flexibility of customizations
  • ease to upgrade the core files without affecting the customizations
  • ease of use in the Admin for people who don't think like I do - e.g. have a high comfort level and ease with sometimes less than intuitive GUIs
  • solid history of wide use/support from the online community
  • proven track record of quick updates for security issues and ongoing updates for improvements

    I chose WordPress as my standard and Joomla for those clients that are a notch above.

  • agorare

     9:53 pm on Dec 12, 2009 (gmt 0)

    am also use wordpress.
    i had try joomla/mambo & drupa, and wordpress just fit with me.

    for the reasons that lorax mentioned

    also i had use frontpage and except the fact that was a living nightmare actually was great idea, just never seams to work


     6:58 am on Dec 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

    I also default to WordPress for a lot of the reasons above. I have used shopping carts with it without hassle. I also use WordPress MU a lot to build out domains and am really looking forward to the code merge.

    One factor for me is that I want to be able to sell a website at some point. With WordPress, you have a broader range of potential customers including those who dont want to go hiring someone to take care of the website. WordPress.com also provides customers who are ready to take the training wheels off and have a standalone site. WP is ideal for them.


     3:59 pm on Dec 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

    I didn't like Drupal's taxonomy structure nor the Admin GUI. Too convoluted for clients.

    I'll definitely agree with that. Drupal is for those who *need* the framework capabilities or advanced features. Always use the simplest CMS possible.

    The killer feature on Drupal that nobody else has is Content Construction Kit [drupal.org] plus Views [drupal.org]. Joomla wasn't remotely close to that sort of out-of-the-box power last I looked. That allows me to collect data in any form and present it in virtually any form. That's why I say that for complex needs, Drupal has power beyond any other CMS I've used, way beyond Wordpress. But definitely CCK and Views are developer features and no client type of end user should have permissions for modifying those.

    For me, if I need CCK+Views functionality, I use Drupal. If not, Wordpress.

    Back to lorax's main point - Drupal did a lot of usability testing after releasing D6 and it was eye-opening for the community. Users habitually failed many things like simple account creation. They have made that a priority and you'll see *some* improvement for D7 (out soon), but likely not see the real fruits of that until D8. It remains to be seen at that point whether or not people have moved onto something new or not.

    I do think, especially with the WPMU/WP code merge, WP is getting more powerful faster than Drupal is getting more usable, and Joomla still shoots the middle.


     10:33 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

    Definitely agree with Drupal more powerful than Joomla more powerful than WordPress. The right tool for the job is the key as you say.

    I do find it a pain to try to keep up with all the changes in each of packages. I think you end up with a favourite that you become very familiar with and the others you know the basics and get up to speed when you need to.


     2:57 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

    >> Drupal more powerful than Joomla more powerful than WordPress

    I'm not saying that at all. IMHO Drupal has an inherent flexibility - but at the price of intuitive use. Which is more powerful? A tool that's very powerful and very flexible but it's like learning a foreign language or a tool that is simply powerful and flexible with some limitations - more like learning sign language?


     5:42 pm on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

    Lorax, I wasn't suggesting you were saying that. Not trying to put words in your fingers.

    But more generally, that's a great point. Paul Graham makes that point often more generally. What's more powerful, a high-level language (Scheme, LISP, Python) or a low-level language (C, Assembler).

    You can waste a huge amount of time.money using a low-level language when you don't really need access to machine-level commands or really need speed.

    I think you're right to point out that "powerful" is a bad choice of words.

    I should have said this. There is a continuum between development platform and application. A platform helps developers build apps quickly, but isn't an app itself. An application is meant to be used as is and isn't really customizable beyond a few simple settings.

    So to translate that to our world, I meant to say that I see CMS apps falling on this scale from framework to app

    - PHP - high-level language

    - Cake - dev framework

    - Drupal - dev framework that can nevertheless function out of the box

    - Joomla - CMS platform with API that allows it to be used as a framework, but without quite the same low-level access as Drupal

    - Wordpress - CMS platform with a rich plugin architecture, but limits on which parts of the system you can access with plugins.

    - blogspot - just a blog with a handful of settings available to the user

    And the user should be as close to the bottom of the list as possible, but no closer.

    Does that make more sense?

    To me, I haven't really gotten into Joomla, because with Drupal I have CCK and Views (as I mentioned), with ModX I have functionality similar to CCK, but not Views and with Wordpress I have neither, but I have a very efficient and relatively simple system.

    Usually, that would be my criterion: if I need CCK and Views and complex User management/profiles, it has to be Drupal. If I don't, it's Wordpress.


     8:19 pm on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

    Ok. My ranking was an over simplification but works as a rule of thumb. For basic needs WP usually suffices, for certain functionality beyond that Joomla works for me. For good user management and some other functionality Drupal.

    I also find that ease of use conceptually follows the same order. Others experience may differ. Ultimately matching the requirements of a project to an appropriate CMS is the way to go.


     10:11 pm on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

    >>My ranking was an over simplification

    Actually didn't see your post tucked in there. I've used the same exact phrase before and thought lorax was quoting me!


     5:16 pm on Dec 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

    It gives me the ability to create something for a client that allows them to do what they want without having to pay me or a code monkey to do the ongoing updates.
    Well these sites are owned and managed by myself and I do not build sites for clients.

    But I do agree, It would be difficult for a client to upgrade each module/theme in drupal... but I guess Drupal 7 will solve that issue by making the system upgrade automatic.

    Whats interesting to me is that many people use a variety of CMS's while I can barely keep up with one. + I prefer to focus on one CMS and learn the ins and out rather than playing around with a couple CMS's.


     6:02 pm on Dec 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

    I guess Drupal 7 will solve that issue by making the system upgrade automatic.

    Is this definitely in for D7? That would be great.


     8:38 pm on Dec 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

    thats what I heard! but not 100% sure. My company blocked several sites or else I would try to find a reliable link.

    From what I remember was that they announced that they are trying to eliminate or reduce the need of a webmaster with Drupal 7.


     11:02 pm on Dec 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

    I just looked through various writeups about what's new in D7, and I don't think this is the case. Would be nice, but I fear not for this release. Hope I'm wrong.


     1:46 pm on Dec 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

    >> was quoting me

    Nope. But your points are well taken.

    Another thought occurred to me - not meant to be a thread killer - but isn't this discussion a bit like Ford versus Chevy versus Mercedes versus Fiat? it really depends upon the environment, your tolerance for fix-it yourself, or convenience/comfort.


     4:11 pm on Dec 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

    The following message was cut out to new thread by ergophobe. New thread at: content_management/4045920.htm [webmasterworld.com]
    5:33 pm on Dec. 18, 2009 (PT -8)

    Das Capitolin

     6:02 pm on Dec 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

    Not sure if you're still looking, but I've been using Joomla for three years now and am very pleased with it. It handles the 15M impressions I deliver each month, and the 1.5 release makes it simple for new users to master. There is a 1.6 version releasing very soon, too.


     11:38 am on Jan 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

    Hello folks,

    Since the question is about which CMS one uses, I would like to attract your attention to a SEO CMS that our team has released in November at PubCon webmasterworld in Vegas, it's called [seotoaster.com....]

    It is free and open source, and also very easy to use with complete front-end edition and administration.

    We believe that it is the most advanced SEO CMS out of the box as it includes unique features such as :
    Point and click Java Script link sculpting and link silo building, automated deep links, automated 301 creation, automated on-site SEO factors alignment, automated media tagging, and a lot more.

    There's a demo online. Feedback appreciated.


     2:22 pm on Jan 8, 2010 (gmt 0)

    i've been try many CMS and decided to use joomla and concrete5, both are simple for beginner but I'd like to test other new open source CMS


     2:21 pm on Jan 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

    This is a very good discussion. But I'm still looking. Was very interested in ModX, esp. about the clean code, until I found it used MySQL.

    I design small, rather simple sites for starving artists and small businesses. My main interest in finding a CMS is so that the client, after I deliver their CSS/HTML web site, can add/delete images on a very few gallery pages that use tables, and can update text on various pages.

    So far, everything seems very much overkill.

    I don't need a "site designer" I need a "content updater" for my clients.

    Any ideas -- file-based (I can't afford the mega bucks/month for a non-virtual server that will allow unlimited MySQL accesses. I am limited to 20 and my other business is image intensive and uses MySQL.)

    Help/thoughts much appreciated.



     2:25 pm on Jan 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

    Welcome to WebmasterWorld bali_webdesign!

    I'm also planning to play with Concrete5 again. It's a very different concept from Joomla.

    If you experiment with any other CMS, make a post with your thoughts.


     4:26 pm on Jan 13, 2010 (gmt 0)


    I think of most CMS as having the admin functions and the user functions. The admin end is where the "site designer" features are and the user end is where the "content updater" functions are.

    1. A MySQL system can be quite fast and light and it gives a lot of flexibility. Personally, after first learning how to build DB-driven sites I just can't stand to be hamstrung without a DB.

    2. Many if not most cheap hosts allow an unlimited number of DBs. There are several places that for less that $10/mo allow you to host an unlimited number of domains and use an unlimited number of DBs, as long as you stay within your bandwidth and disk usage limits

    3. I have built a site where the content updating part was just a simple text area (the site overall is actually DB-intensive because of other features). All you need to do is create a template and then have the content fit in that template. Create a user interface to log in edit the content section. Add in TinyMCE and it's pretty functional for the user.

    4. Another option: the one line template engine [webmasterworld.com] It doesn't get simpler than that!


     6:45 pm on Jan 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

    ergophobe --
    Sweet one line -- will investigate how to use when I have time.

    However, I've unlimited DB creation privileges and domains, etc. BUT if more than 20 pipes are open to my DBs, I get a red flag. So, I'm not about to chance anything right now.

    Today I found a program called PageBreeze which appears to be bug free for what I want it for and has a clean interface. It handled text changes easily and did the proper stuff with deleting and inserting images.

    The program is so slick, I wrote to them and suggested they disable everything except the visual editing, image deletion/insertion, page preview, and publishing and put it on the market. It would be idiot proof and just the thing for folks who need to update their web sites, are not rich, and don't have any computer savvy. It works on both PC and Mac.

    So, I'm going to incorporate this program into my business arsenal and teach my clients to use it.

    I needed to know I had something right now as I am going to print with a business brochure and didn't want to promise anything I couldn't deliver!

    Thanks again! Look forward to playing with the "one liner".


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