How Does a CMS Work?
Technically speaking, a cms is simply a package of visual templates,
database queries and scripts. When someone requests
www.yoursite/index.php the script index.php takes the content from the
database, paints it with the visual template and serves it.
A reliable CMS lets you:
Create a website just by uploading the CMS package to the server,
configuring and customising its properties as you wish. You do not have
to struggle with html, dreamweaver, photoshop, slicing, optimising,
- Edit, publish, organize, update, remove
your articles, announcements or news as you were creating a simple text
file in your own computer.
- Change the visual appearance of all or parts of your site in a second.
- Give other people the ability to edit, update or comment on your content within your permissions.
- Install and administer easily tools like: forums, newsletters, weblogs, e-shops, picture galleries.
Which CMS is good for you?
I categorise CMS's in three types:
1) Weblog CMS's
These systems lets individuals post their comments, thoughts,
observations, favourite links in an chronological order. They are
suitable for only individuals who wish to publish a because it's
burdensome to change the ordering of the documents and the visual
appearance of the website.
some people used weblog cms's for no chronological web sites. I don't
understand why they are doing such an absurd thing. Probably they liked
the cms capabilities of the weblog, and as they did not know what a CMS
is and what other kind of CMS's exist, they have tried to use weblog
CMS's for every web site.
Example: Pmachine, Movable Type
2) Online Community CMS's
They are Ideal for administering a web site joining people with similar
interests. Generally works with a membership logic. They have various
functionalities such as: who is online, chat, forum, poll...
Example: phpnuke, postnuke...
3) Web Publishing CMS's
These are are very flexible and modular systems. Their priority is to
let individuals, communities or firms publish a webzine, e-journal, or
any other article-news oriented web site. In an ideal world, %80 of the
web sites should use online publishing CMS's.
Example: Mambo, Drupal, Awf, Props
4) Portal / Intranet CMS's
These are huge systems with many funtionalities suitable for large
corporate intranets or complex web sites like yahoo. Stay away from
theses unless you play big.
Example: xoops mother
You can test many CMS systems for free at opensourcecms.com
How much does a CMS Cost?
Absolutely free, unless you are a dumb who will pay for poorer software
with poorer support instead of using free opensource systems. You only
need a hosting capable of mysql and php. I pay 5$ for month for such a
If you are building a real web site and not a brochureware an
appropriate CMS is indispensable. Plan your site, think about your
objectives, and pick the simplest opensource cms that fulfills all your