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Joomla, Drupal or WordPress …

There seems to be a lot of debate and controversy over which one to use. All have been referred to as content management systems [CMS]. However, WordPress really is not so much a content management system as it is a blogging solution. I have setup WordPress sites and redesigned WordPress themes, been involved in Drupal site development, and have designed and developed in the Joomla environment. There are as many opinions about which one to use as there are people putting in their two cents worth.

In short, if you are an end user looking for a great application for blogging, I believe the best possible option is to set up a WordPress site. Drupal and Joomla can be used for blogging, but that is not what they are designed for. Plus, WordPress sites are the easiest of the three to setup. There are a myriad of predesigned themes to choose from; and a multitude of plugins designed to extend WordPress functionality. In fact, you can even set up eCommerce or shopping cart solutions on WordPress sites.

Now, if you are a large corporation, with multiple websites to deploy; are concerned primarily with functionality and hierarchy and not overly concerned with aesthetics, then Drupal may be your solution. However, if you are not equipped with extensive programming knowledge or have a budget for this type of development, then think twice about Drupal. The learning curve for Drupal is fairly steep. Do not opt for Drupal if you need to have a site set up and running smoothly in a short period of time. Drupal is the solution that developers would most likely promote, because you will be needing to employ their services to maintain a Drupal site.

For communities and for article or content servers, think about using Joomla. It does have a much steeper learning curve than WordPress, but not quite as difficult as Drupal. If you want a site that is aesthetically pleasing and have an intermediate level of PHP background, then Joomla could be a great option. There are a myriad of templates, components, modules and plugins available for Joomla, too. Bear in mind that anyone can create these extensions and make them available. However, that does not mean they all work, or are all free. Some cost and some are free. Some work better than others. Some extensions may not have any documentation in a language you can read and write. However, just like Drupal and WordPress, there are forums where help is sometimes available.

If you are thinking of deploying a new website and not quite sure which makes most sense, talk to someone with experience with each of the three most popular blogging and content management systems.

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