Why use a cms?

November 20, 2010 Written By Marco Monteiro

A while ago i received an e-mail with a future subject to write about on my blog and i was really glad, since that ment two things, people are reading and most of all are interested in my opinion. Therefore this week post will be all about free stuff and all you can actually make with it on the webdesign / webdev world. First i should show you guys the message that brought this subject here:

It would be nice to write an article about the basics of getting into the web developing world. Something like a 1st person experience, what you would do if your boss told you to make a prject from scrath.

You could tell the story like this: if I wanna make a forum i use this tool, with this tool to manage the database and host the forum on this server. If I want to do a buisness site and dont want any publicity i use this payed server and build the page using a cms. If you want to make a blog i use this CMS and edite the css with this tool. For my art work i usually google it or go to deviant art and then edit the images, etc…

Did you get what i meant? Not a tecnical article but more an overview that your readers could consult to begin a project. Of course, only write this if it doesn’t put you out of business :D

Let’s begin.

Do you know how to code? If you do you have two choices: or you start programming your own scripts and make your websites from scratch, or you can use some cool frameworks. If you are a hardcore developer you might want to try Ruby on rails, this got a lot of attention lately. This is almost like programming with Ruby but just for web.

I tried this one out for a bit but end up sticking with php, not because i didn’t like it but because of my lack of time to actually use in the real world. Take a look at the framework here: http://rubyonrails.org/.

There are some other frameworks that uses PHP and also with a MVC structure like Zend software, cakePHP or even CodeIgniter. Even if Zend isn’t totally free is really cool but now this is really just a mather of preference. /by the way you can place the Zend SDK on eclipse.

Now if you don’t know how to code, or even if you know but your projects don’t need that much trouble you should begin exploring the CMS world. And there’s a lot to cover here so you have to be selective. Probably after this article you’ll know what to choose for your project.


This one is one of my favorites, not the first one i’ve used but still i like it a lot. I’ve used it to build my website and my blog. I gotta a say it really makes it easy for bloggers. The installation couldn’t be easier. The usage is even easier, anyone can mantain a wordpress website, so if you have a client that needs a small website or a blog this is the way to go, you just need a mysql database and a php5 server and you’ll be up and running with the latest Wordpress version.

Download it now and start playig with it, or register yourself there and try it online, but there you can’t use ftp or any other access protocol to the website. Just http.


I’ve used this one a lot and i gotta a say, i love it. You can use it for almost everything, a small blog, a community website, a forum or whatever really. With some time in my hands i can make any website with Joomla. If you are interested in what kind of things you can make with it just visit my portfolio and almost every website from 2009 is made with it.

Here’s a really good article about joomla that can start you up with joomla.

Why joomla Follow the links on the article and you’ll be amazed with what you can do with joomla.


This is a strong cms forum oriented that can help you a lot. I think it’s safe to say that more than 50% of the forums are built with this one. You can do almost anything: moderate, have all different kinds of permissions for users and admins. And the view it self if really easy to customize, if you don’t like the themes out there you can change one knowing just a little bit of css.

In conclusion, if you look back you see that you can do almost anything with a cms’s. You have wordpress to build powerful blog’s and simple websites. If you want to build some complicated website you should definitely go with Joomla or Dupal. And to build a community you can always use phpBB.

If you want to build some complicated website you should definitely go with Joomla or Dupal.

To view some examples of all of this you can check my portfolio at www.marcomonteiro.net and see some examples. And fell free to comment if you have some doubts about what cms to use.

Obviously you can be at the point where a cms is not enough you should go with a good framework and start coding. I hope i have help you guys understanding how easy it is to make to the webdev world. Next week i’ll give some directions on hosting an registering free domains.


Like it? Tweet it.

"Why use a cms?" via @marcogmonteiro