Content Management System (CMS)
The English abbreviation «CMS» has become established in German-speaking countries. Such software is also used by online publishers, which is why it is also called an editorial system.
Its main feature is the separation of content, data structure and design (layout) as well as the possibility of access control (user administration).
Internet presences created with CMS have a clear menu structure and are therefore usually easy to use.
Behind the scenes, things look very different. The backend, i.e. the user interface for the administrator/webmaster/editor, is user-friendly only with a few CMS.
The system requirement is a webhosting offer with PHP. Most CMS' require a MySQL database.
Disadvantage of a database: this can be faulty («corrupt») at some point, for example due to a power failure or hardware defect of the server during a write process. You have to be very familiar with MySQL to repair a database or import a backup.
But already the MySQL backup is uncomfortable and therefore annoying evil.
The repair of a MySQL database can take hours and is not always crowned with success.
And if you want to change your web host, the website move is not easy either.
Therefore I had tested all free testable CMS' without database some time ago with the conclusion: there are only a few unrestrictedly recommendable CMS' which do not need a database. I describe one of them here:
is based on an Open Source PHP Flat-File CMS, which the Dane Peter Harteg has published on 10.04.2003 named CMSimple 1.0.
It was very small – only 20 kB and hasn´t needed a database. Peter Harteg put his software under GPL3 on 01.01.2010, freeing it, as well as CMSimple_XH, from any link requirement. 2009 some users began working on a follow-up version while keeping the compatibility with the original program as far as possible. In agreement with Peter Harteg it was called CMSimple_XH (X for XHTML- and H for HTML-compliance) which was not widespread at the time. CMSimple_XH 1.0 was published in December 2009. The current version 1.7.3 was released on 06.08.2020.
CMSimple_XH needs no database like its predecessor CMSimple and stores the content of the website in a single text file. The administration effort is minimal. If something was changed on the content of the website, a backup with timestamp is created automatically when logging out. Just as easily any backup can be selected and restored. CMSimple_XH requires only PHP from version 5.3 upwards. It also runs very well with PHP version 7.2.7.
A user administration can be added by a plug-in if required. Plug-in developers also offer free solutions for many other purposes. If you are not satisfied with the design of the supplied technically flawless responsive design templates, you can either customize them yourself or find a more suitable sample design template from one of the developers.
If you then need help or have good ideas, please feel free to contact us in the forum. Quickly you will find patient forum members who are friendly with advice and code. Optimizations for the CMS are also discussed together in the forum. It is a very helpful and friendly community and many people contribute actively in their spare time. Those who can't program, test new plug-ins and templates or write a manual or update a chapter of the wiki or proofread? Translation into other languages is also helpful. And everything is voluntary, because this is the only way people like to do it.
- Web server: Apache or IIS or NGINX
- PHP: from version 5.3, 5.6 upwards recommended, 7.x brings significant speed advantages for large sites
was published in 2004 by Ryan Djurovich.
We have him to thank for this unbeatably easy-to-use editorial system. In 2008, Ryan left the development team to further develop and commercially market his work under a new name. Unfortunately, the remaining development team fell out and development came to a standstill. In the meantime almost all developers have left the team.
But some of them have developed Ryan's ingenious editorial system further:
WBCE CMS – Way Better Content Editing
was created by a single web designer who, after WebsiteBaker had come to a standstill and LEPTON had been in dispute, urgently needed a more advanced and regularly maintained version for his many customers. A very competent community supports him energetically. On 26.09.2015 version 1.0 was made available for download, on 15.12.2015 version 1.1 was released. This CMS is easy to install and has a very user-friendly interface. The installation manual, written in error-free German, reads very well thanks to the relaxed and funny writing style! So the installation is very easy for everyone.
- Web Server: Apache
- PHP: from version 7.1 or newer (already tested up to 7.4)
- MySQL database: mySQL 5.x or newer
Good to know: both systems mentioned above are suitable for websites with hundreds of pages!