September 7, 2006 12:36 PM   Subscribe

What is the best CMS for a high-traffic IIS website with a wide variety of content (forum, articles, article archives, product listings, hardware comparisons, tips, blogs, podcasts, etc.)?

I did search AskMe and I learned a lot, but I could still use more information, especially information that focusses on a) the breadth of content, and b) the fact that it's an IIS site.

I realize that trying to integrate everything under one solution isn't always the best solution, but we really need to unify and expand our content creation interface.

We're willing to grind a steep learning curve to get the best possible long-term solution. It's a given that we will be doing loads of tweaking and developing for the front end of whichever CMS we choose, in order to maintain the current look and functionality of the site, so it's important that template modification be, if not painless, at least not too tortuous. Even more important, though, is the ability to classify a wide variety of content (Drupal's taxonomies look capable in this respect).

Currently, the contenders are Drupal, Plone, and MS Content Management Server (pricey, but has some features, such as integration with MS Word, that make it attractive in this case). If you have experience with any of these, please tell me about strengths and weaknesses. I would particularly appreciate compare/contrast comments from those of you who have used more than one of these.
posted by bricoleur to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
High-traffic basically means you'll need it to cache, instead of dynamically generated pages for every request (you'd be surprised how many sites do this). Personally, I'd use Plone - I've used an existing setup and its been amazingly nice, although I've heard its a pain in the ass to set up and configure (same with Typo3).

You might want to look at Typo3, also. In terms of being configurable, Typo3 is just about the most configurable system I've seen (although python may be easier to extend than PHP - I haven't looked under the hood at Typo3's code too much, but I have a general bias against PHP code). It'll run on IIS, backed with MSSQL or ODBC, etc. Typo3 also has professional consulting, & a developers conference. Not sure if Plone does or not.
posted by devilsbrigade at 1:23 PM on September 7, 2006

Drupal handles high traffic rather well, with some throttling configuration and caching support. I've never tried it with IIS - strictly LAMP - I have no idea about the performance or stability. A site I work with runs 20k visits a week with zero performance problems.

Template modification is rather easy - most are CSS + table driven.

Drup works fine, allows you to embed PHP right into the pages for your own extension and has a very active userbase and development structure.

Aside: Ditch your chains, man, get rid of IIS. Embrace freedom.
posted by unixrat at 1:47 PM on September 7, 2006

Why not Joomla?
posted by Memo at 2:08 PM on September 7, 2006

Aside: Ditch your chains, man, get rid of IIS. Embrace freedom.

Eh, if he's already there, there's no big difference in code implementation, unless you're trying to code in something that's platform specific (like pushing out pages in ASP, god help you).

Drupal with PHP and a good DB on the backend gets you all the way there, just make sure to generate static pages.

On the other hand, if you need someone that's made a few of these CMS thingies from scratch, you could always hire me. :)
posted by thanotopsis at 3:09 PM on September 7, 2006

avoid joomla if you want valid xhtml and require heavy customization. it's just not designed for it. i vote for drupal.
posted by SeƱor Pantalones at 3:51 PM on September 7, 2006

Response by poster: Ditch your chains, man, get rid of IIS.

Just not an option in this shop, unfortunately.

I'm gravitating toward Drupal. I don't want the complication of running Plone/Zope on Winders, and I don't want to go down the MS road any further than I have to (or pay $7k), so MS CMS is not looking pretty to me. But I have to convince other people. Thank you all for the ammunition.
posted by bricoleur at 5:03 PM on September 7, 2006

If you decide to go with MCMS, check out the microsoft.public.cmserver.general newsgroup. Stefan Gossner and Angus Logan, the gurus there, have helped answer many of my questions regarding the API/internals of the system.

Also, FYI: The next release of Microsoft Content Management Server is being folded into Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007.

posted by joshjs at 6:17 PM on September 7, 2006

Enfold Systems offers a Plone based CMS that's designed to work with IIS out of the box. It does caching and integrates with Office and Windows Explorer.

They do consulting services as well -- I believe some of the core Plone developers work there.
posted by kaefer at 8:33 PM on September 7, 2006

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