Looking at Plone (vs. Drupal)

As GNOME has selected to try Plone as the CMS of choice I had volunteered as a tester. To summarize some of my experiences: Plone sure is a very powerful CMS, maybe the most powerful that we have in open source – but truely I think it is ugly and not at all elegant. As I had discovered Drupal I was excited about how easy it was to handle and I seldom had to look where to set things. As it turnes out this is very different with Plone. Although I would have liked to help I rather feel stuck – and to be honest I do not really want to learn a new CMS. What Drupal does is make things look easy and beeing easy. It is not that you can really do everything with Drupal – you often have to take things as they are, but you can invest the time you spend in adding content and plugins.

I have used XOOPS before and I think that Plone does a similar job in abstracting settings. But too much abstraction results in the user having to think too much about how things must be done. GNOME has some support Plone developers. This is nice and this sure can help to make a real good use out of it. But that’s something most Plone implementors can not expect to have.

I will rather support guadec.org and GUADEC to make this website more useful because I already have experience with Drupal. And so I think I also will be more helpful and not having to learn a new CMS. For me Plone just looks not ready for simple use. But really my expectation is to make things more easy. About the localisation: I really do not think that this should be too much of a problem. I am optimistic that Drupal will have better localisation at any time soon. I think it would be most important to have a new http://www.gnome.org in english soon and add what is needed later. And I think that a quick progress is more important than having a killer CMS that does everything we can think of. Right now I am switching some content of my companies: wiki.pfennigsolutions.de and www.pfennigsolutions.de (from WordPress) to a new Drupal installation that will also be available on http://www.pfennigsolutions.de. I already have moved most of the content and now consider how to best do the rewriting to not loose already present links. The nice thing is that Drupal is so much powerful than WordPress by beeing really even more easy – although it is a CMS and not just a blog. Thats the magic that Drupal does: Making complex things easy. If I worked on it I had the experience that it looks like these guys have gone through the same frustrations that I had. It may be not a good CMS when you want to do a whole lot of tricks, but it stands out when you want some content management jobs done. I have not tested Midgard and some other new CMSes lately – I might choose to do so. Maybe someone likes to comment on similar experiences?

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1 Comment

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One response to “Looking at Plone (vs. Drupal)

  1. I’ m using Drupal for 4 years on personal projects and working with Plone in a company I work for since 2005.

    Drupal have been being very extensible and pluggable with other systems.

    In other hand, Plone is hard to do the things simple (like to extend user profile). No doubt Plone is powerfull but it’s learning courve is too much bigger than Drupal(dispite you know php or python).

    If I could I change all Plone sites I made to Drupal sites, but it’s not my decision…

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