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A Beginners Guide to Popular CMSs - Part 2: dotNET & Commercial by Stuart Mitchell

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A Beginners Guide to Popular CMSs - Part 2: dotNET & Commercial by
Article Posted: 02/06/2013
Article Views: 125
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A Beginners Guide to Popular CMSs - Part 2: dotNET & Commercial

Computers,Internet,Website Design
Website Design London or for those looking for a hosting platform for their new site, click here.


Having provided an overview of the three most common PHP based CMSs in the preceding installment, the following begins with two of the most prevalent systems to be based on the .NET framework for their server-side scripting, and concludes with a further two commercial systems which are also amongst the web’s most popular.

Although most CMSs are based upon the open source PHP server-side scripting language, as mentioned in the first part of the article, there are still a significant number that utilise coding and languages based within the .NET framework, as developed by Microsoft...


This is the most widely used of the .NET based systems on the internet today as well as being one of the most stable and developed because of its relatively long history. It is maintained by the DotNetNuke corporation as an open source project and is currently available under free open source licences and enhanced commercial licences. The CMS itself utilises modules to extend functionality and skins to manage theming/templating for the look and feel of a site.

  • Created: 2003 (2002 as IBuySpy)
  • Original use: CMS
  • Licence: Open Source (MIT) / Commercial Proprietary
  • Popularity*:
    • 2% of CMSs
    • <1% of Websites
  • Server-side script: ASP.NET
  • Database systems: SQL Server
  • Hosting OS: Microsoft
  • Benefits/Features:
    • Versions available to suit beginners and advanced developers
    • Modules for extending functionality
    • Allows multi-site management from one installation
    • Community support available
    • Commercial support available (see below)
  • Concerns:
    • Cost of commercial versions and modules
  • Examples:


The second of the featured .NET CMSs is Umbraco. This system is perhaps more targeted at web developers as it requires some knowledge of coding to get up and running, but for those who use it, it can provide high levels of flexibility in realising web designs because it utilises only standard frameworks, languages and protocols rather than introducing any limitations. As with the DotNetNuke, it is available in both a streamlined free open source licence and enhanced commercial versions.

  • Created: 2004
  • Original use: CMS
  • Licence: Open Source (MIT) / Commercial Proprietary
  • Popularity*:
    • <1% of CMSs
    • <1% of Websites
  • Server-side script: ASP.NET
  • Database systems: SQL Server; MySQL
  • Hosting OS: Microsoft
  • Benefits/Features:
    • Provides a .NET framework for developers
    • Uses standard templating formats and protocols
    • Flexibility for site development and customisation (see above)
    • Commercial support available
  • Concerns:
    • Limited out-of-the-box for beginners/non-developers
    • Limited user management capabilities
    • Cost of commercial product
  • Examples:

The most deployed CMS, including the three for the article’s first installment, tend to be based upon open source frameworks and therefore free - a fundamental factor behind their popularity - whilst others offer enhanced commercial versions open source packages (see above). However, there are a good number of commercial CMS products available to consumers and some of these are amongst the most used on the web, despite their costs.


One of the longest lived of content management systems still in use on the web, vBulletin is in truth most suited to delivering message boards and forums, and is the most popular system for doing so, however it also brings an extensive array of functions into play and can easily be used for wider web development. Indeed it is particularly suited to building websites and blogs with good message board integration.

  • Created: 2000
  • Original Use: Message Board
  • Licence: Commercial Proprietary
  • Popularity*:
    • 3% of CMSs
    • 1% of Websites
  • Server-side script: PHP
  • Database systems: MySQL
  • Hosting OS: Various
  • Benefits/Features:
    • Specifically designed for forums and discussion boards
    • Provides blogging and CMS functions in addition
    • Rich with forum features and blog integration
  • Concerns:
    • Cost of licence
    • Requires PHP editing during install
    • Number of functions can be overwhelming
  • Examples:


This powerful CMS was developed by EllisLab back in 2004 taking inspiration from an earlier attempt at a blogging platform and delivers a wealth of well developed functionality as well as flexibility owing to years of commercial development combined with underlying open source frameworks.

  • Created: 2004
  • Original use: Blogging Platform/CMS
  • Licence: Commercial Proprietary
  • Popularity*:
    • 1% of CMSs
    • <1% of Websites
  • Server-side script: PHP
  • Database systems: MySQL
  • Hosting OS: Various
  • Benefits/Features:
    • Commercially developed and supported
    • Open source framework allows custom development
    • Good and easy user management and administration capabilities
    • Rich in functionality both out of the box and with add-ons
    • Allows multi-site management from one installation
  • Concerns:
    • Expense/cost of licences and add-ons
  • Examples:

© Stuart Mitchell 2012

If you are interested in getting a site built in one of the CMSs mentioned above then you can visit Website Design London or for those looking for a hosting platform for their new site, click here.

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