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Content Management System Software

Content Management System Software

CMS

Changing the look of your site, tracking, editing, and rearranging content quickly are some of the biggest challenges in running a website. Thankfully, there is a wide variety of content management system (CMS) software available that let you produce professional quality websites. This guide helps you pick the right CMS for your project.

What Is Content Management System Software (CMS)?

20 results - showing 1 - 10
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Details Ratings
December 30, 2010    

Wordpress is a Content Management System Software (open source) for Servers under the GPLv2 and Free Software Foundation, Inc.

 
4.9 (5)
December 29, 2010    

Drupal is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers created by The Drupal Association.

 
4.8 (1)
January 09, 2011    

concrete5 is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers with PHP support created by concrete5 CMS Inc.

 
4.5 (1)
December 30, 2010    

Movable Type is a Content Management System Software (open source) for Servers created by Six Apart Ltd under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported.

 
4.3 (1)
December 15, 2010    

Joomla is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers created by Open Source Matters, Inc.

 
4.0 (3)
January 09, 2011    

PHP Nuke is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers with PHP support created by Francisco Burzi (phpnuke.org).

 
3.8 (1)
January 09, 2011    

Pligg is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers with PHP/mySQL support created by Pligg, LLC.

 
2.5 (1)
January 11, 2011    

Radiant CMS is a Content Management System Software for Linux/Windows servers with PHP support created by John W. Long.

 
0.0 (0)
January 11, 2011    

dotCMS is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers with PHP support created by dotCMS Inc.

 
0.0 (0)
January 11, 2011    

Contao (Formerly Known As TYPOlight) is a Content Management System Software (Open Source) for Linux/Windows servers with PHP support created by Leo Feyer.

 
0.0 (0)
20 results - showing 1 - 10
1 2  
 

Content Management System Software

Content Management System Resource & Information

The Role CMS software plays in your website's development and how to pick the right one

Developing a website can be quite a headache. Besides design, tracking and managing content can become very time consuming specially if you are going to handle everything manually. There are many web software and script packages available that take much of the heavy lifting out of website development. These content management system (CMS) packages let you quickly publish and track content, change the look of your site, make universal changes to your site, set your site up for Search Engine Optimization, track changes, and make your content easier to find/categorize—all with a few clicks and keystrokes.

Luckily, most CMS packages available on the Internet are free and open source. However, CMS packages have differing strengths and weaknesses. There is no “one size fits all” solution to web development. Your choice of CMS must revolve around the script/software's ability to meet your needs. This guide lists the common features of most CMS packages available so you can consider the relevant criteria present in your project. With the right considerations, you can make an informed decision that will not only save you time, money, and effort now but possibly avoid headaches in the future.

When considering CMS packages, the following criteria should be considered.

How customizable are its templates?

This is a key question to ask if you see changes in your site's future. Customizability goes deeper than cosmetic changes. Customizability involves changes in how your content is structured, how your pages are arranged, functions that appear in your pages, and other features. If you plan to build a very simple site that won't be changing much in the future (other than updated content), customizability would not be a big concern. If, on the other hand, you see your site as growing in the future, or you plan to keep tweaking your site's offerings and functions in order to better meet the needs of your site's visitors, customizability would be a crucial concern.

Manual template customization versus Plug and Play customization

Assuming that you want some degree of customization from your CMS, you need to consider whether it allows for manual customization only or plug and play customization. Manual customization requires that you “get under the hood” of the script package. This means manually editing template code. While some website owners are technically savvy or have extra time to learn the basics of customizing their CMS' code, other web publishers would rather opt for an easier solution. Plug and Play customization offers an easier alternative to manual customization.

Instead of manually making changes to a template, Plug and Play customization units like themes or plugins or add-ons, lets you install customizations by uploading the theme or plugin into a directory, activating it on the CMS dashboard, and customizing its features within the dashboard. No fuss. No muss. Plug and Play customizations let you customize in a directed and clear manner. No guessing which line of code to manually edit While this route might seem like the easiest and best, what it gains in ease and convenience, it loses in terms of sheer customizability. When it comes to a wider and fuller range of customization, manual customization might be a better bet.

How large is the existing library of available plug and play customizations?

Not all CMS platforms that have plug and play customization have a large library of user-made customizations. Wordpress, for example, has a huge library of plugins and themes. Other CMS titles have less. This criterion is very important to consider since it gives you a wider range of options for your site's appearance (themes), functions (plugins), and other add ons. In addition to saving money on design, a large theme library lets you experiment easily regarding which looks gets the most advertising clicks. This is very hard to do conveniently with manual theme customizations. A large customization library also lets you see what content management and traffic issues other webmasters are facing and how they resolve those issues. One key concern is search engine traffic. Some CMS platforms have libraries of SEO plugins or components. The larger the existing library, the more choices you have of an SEO plugin that would best fit your needs. Also, there's a competitive pool among plugin solutions when there's a large customization library. This increases your chance of finding the best solution to your content management, design, traffic, or feature function issues.

The downside of a large customization library is that it does not necessarily ensure that the customizations are quality. In fact, there are literally thousands of free WP themes out there. However, the quality varies widely. Some critics of Wordpress even go so far as to say that the quality varies “wildly” as well—ie., from very good to very very aweful.

How big and how responsive is the CMS' user community?

The great thing about open source CMS systems is that every user has access to the code and can make changes according to their needs. Their ability to see and tweak the code gives more tech-savvy community members the opportunity to anticipate problems, conduct experiments, and share their findings with the larger community. Open source CMS community members quickly post issues they encounter. The community members then devise fixes and report their solutions. Bugs are found and fixed faster.

Since the CMS depends on its installed base community for bug reports, feedback, security reports, and other key technical support functions, you have to consider the size of any given CMS' community is. In this case, size does matter. The more community members supporting a CMS, the higher the likelihood security and bug issues are discovered and dealt with.

One key downside to an open source model's community support system is that you are at the mercy of the community. If your particular issue isn't widely reported or community members don't bother to post the fix for it, your support question might be gathering dust in a support forum for a long time. In contrast, closed source CMS support would be obligated to handle your support request regardless of how common or how rare it is.

Is the CMS upgraded regularly?

This is an important consideration since viruses, exploits, and hacks are rampant on the Internet. CMS security upgrades protect your website from being hacked and exploited by people intent on defacing your site, using it to spread trojan horses and spyware, or otherwise harming your site. Some open source CMS platforms upgrade more regularly due to the relatively larger number of feedback it receives from its installed base. While this is a good thing, too much of a good thing can easily become annoying. Case in point: Open source CMS like Wordpress update so frequently that it can have up to 4 differing updates in a single year. While this might not be a hassle and a headache if you only have one site, it poses logistical hassles if you have many sites hosted on many differing web hosts.

To relieve the headache and hassle of frequent upgrades, many open source CMS have auto-updater scripts that are bundled with many server management programs like Cpanel. While these help, you can still run into headaches if your host didn't set up WP or its auto updater correctly.

The Bottom Line

When it comes to your online publishing business, you must always remember that time is money and that scalability and flexibility directly impact your ability to grow. Keep the consideration above in mind when making your CMS decisions, since they can make or break your website.