Comparison Between Open Source CMS Systems and Commercial Open Source Systems


Background

Whilst the majority of people are still only discussing WordPress, Joomla and Drupal as the three best Open source Content Management Systems, more and more commercial Open source Content Mangement Systems are launched. These systems will be reviewed through first hand experience. But, we will add to the equation, a Commercial Open Source CMS system and analyze the major differences between the three open source system and then group those open source system and compare them with a Commercial Open source system. marmaris

Only within the last year has WordPress actually begun to step up as a true CMS. However the other two, Drupal and Joomla, magicianneo have seemingly always been fighting for that top spot in the community. Both are open source, and both are widely developed with thousands of members in their community helping to develop and extend the possibilities of use for each. While WordPressis considered the underdog in the CMS war, OPEN SOURCE CONTENTS it is most definitely the king of blogging software (something that Joomla and Drupal struggle to do efficiently).

In contrast, flowactivo Commercial Open Source systems are build on open source technology but are bundled as a software service in a service platform with a large amount of standard features embedded in the platform. Those platforms have a tendency to eliminate the FUD factor when implementing the latest web technologies, they eliminate the proprietary licensing fees, they are lowering the cost of ownership by simplifying development and maintenance efforts, they are delivering a scalable solution that meets the demands of small and large enterprises and they are enticing both the Business owner and the Web Developers alike. The last point being the key difference between the open source platforms and the current available commercial open source platforms.

WordPress… usable beyond blogging?

It is widely accepted that WordPress is an excellent system when you want your ideas out quickly on the web. It is therefore often used as a blog, because you are out there quickly, freespaceusa but WordPress can be configured in many different ways.

WordPress is extremely easy to use and setup. It can of course work as a blog, comments are already built into the system, as well as pinging services, multiple blogger profiles, trackbacks and common features you might expect from a blog. Most of the functionality is out of the box, and works as expected without the need of customization.

But the fact that customization was not the key driver for WordPress, also is to a certain extend its limitation. Because very often, if you try to customize or you try to do different things with the system, causes it break or disappear altogether. WordPress is far from being developer friendly and too many times upgrades to the system causes your website to simply disappear as well along with the upgrade and the customization and modifications you made are no longer available. flowerlisa

The advantages of WordPress are that it is very easy to use and few modifications are needed, that it is excellent for blogging or sharing thoughts in a sequential manner and that you have an easy learning curve, also for the not so sophisticated users.

The disadvantages of WordPress are that it is not developer friendly, that the community seems to like to complain about its usability and that upgrades bring more bugs than fixes.

Drupal… can it be used by non-developers?

If you enjoy tweaking the code that makes up the framework of a website, then Drupal is probably for you. This advanced content management system is more a developer platform than a traditional CMS. Its not to say that only developers can use the system though, but to say that they will feel more at home here than in the other two.

Interestingly, being more developer friendly does not automatically make it more user friendly –  in fact the developer has to work hard to make it that way if they need the end-product to do so.

For those that are not so developer-minded, this can be the trial of their lives, but for people who live in code – well, they can literally get lost developing some very cool websites.

Being in essence a development platform and if you are a developer and are willing to learn the ins and outs of the proprietary system, you can surely make great websites with Drupal. But you will have a hard time make it look and feel the same way as it function. The underlying technology is perfect, the usability and the design is far from being perfect. So in a lot of cases, you could end up with a perfectly working website, but that is difficult to use and is not very neat in its design. Surf Lessons

The advantages of Drupal are that it is extremely developer friendly, but you need to engage in proprietary Drupal code, that you have a strong community to help discern the dozens (hundreds) of functions and tags available and that it can be used to create some really awesome websites that can outperform a majority of other sites out there.

The disadvantages of Drupal are that it is not very designer and user-friendly. It’s hard for someone with little code knowledge to make the leaps required to do the very cool things that Drupal is becoming known for, that the theming of Drupal has been a huge case of failure. Themes are made by developers, not designers, and that getting a Drupal website published could cost you more time, and thus more money, than WordPress or Joomla and certainly compared to commercial open source software.

Joomla – a community of web builders!

Joomla means in Swahili (Urdu) “all together” and to a certain extend they have been living up their name of being a system that is end-user friendly, developer friendly and also takes care of the design of your website and the way a content management system should work.

Designers will choose Joomla because of the amazing capabilities that its engine has in making websites look fantastic. Newcomers to Joomla (and website management) technoinstructor will love the fact that it is very easy to use and even customize as more and more developers create tools that are easier to understand. Developers, likewise, will choose the system because of its large capacity for development and customization. The new MVC framework was built just so that anyone with the knowledge could override the core of the CMS without actually modifying the original code.

But it is not as flexible for developers as Drupal is and it not as user-friendly as WordPress. It can not run multisites from one backend database, and parts of the system have to be taken as is and can not be customized or modified. In other words, you need lo learn the limitations as you are sometimes caught in between a developers platform and modules that are in essence self-contained.

 


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