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Comparing Open Source Content Management Systems

Not too long ago, I used to use phpbb a open source bulletin board software system. At that stage it was in the 2.XX version stages and to modify it required manually inserting lines of code at the right point in the right .php file. It was painful when updates would happen because that meant reviewing the code changes you made and making sure it didn’t conflict with updates.

There must be a better way I thought and there was, but back then I knew alot less about content on the web. So I decided to get out of my static HTML comfort zone which drove the non-forum pages of my site. I started to explore content management systems. I came across many opinions and many websites containing discussions based on what was best.

That was then, and this is now. I’ve certainly learnt alot about what makes a good cms and what doesn’t cut the mustard, so to speak! The purpose of this article is to give you the reader a heads up on what to look for and hopefully make the right decision for your requirements. Because that’s exactly what’s important here, is that you pick the right system that suits your needs. Of course you can’t always plan correctly for the future and your needs may change as your site grows.

Unfortunately that can mean trying to extract data from one content management system’s database schema into another, not an easy process for someone unfamiliar with sql. It can also cost you a bit if you need to hire a database developer / expert. The message here is try to pick the best system now as it will cost you later if you don’t!

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4 Responses to “Comparing Open Source Content Management Systems”

  1. […] the situation. Just call a plugin a plugin. I’ve actually written up an article about Joomla. Comparing Open Source Content Management Systems – Gavin Doolan I plan to cover Drupal next and discuss how it works. You should really really look into Drupal […]

  2. drupal is the best 🙂

  3. Yes, I didn’t get around to finishing this article. I do apologise to anyone who visits this site. I have since built a website using Drupal and I can say that so far I’m most impressed with Drupal because its so flexible and can do almost anything I need it to with the Views / CCK / ImageCache / ImageField modules.

    I will try and finish this article up and review Drupal and give advice as to who I think should use it.

    I will eventually convert all my websites from Joomla / WordPress / Coppermine Gallery / SMF Forum to Drupal because Drupal can do all the above and more.

  4. Hello David,

    I notice you’re already using Drupal. I’m running a forum (about 3000 users, near 70 000 posts) and I am thinking in migrating to Drupal. I know you have to go throught SMF > PHPBB > Drupal, tell me, did you have problems with the passwords? I think SMF use a different way to encrypt than PHPBB and Drupal.

    Please advice,


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