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The “Light” CMS Trend

Published by Chris Coyier

CMSs are beautiful things. Just as CSS allows us to abstract the design away from the markup, a CMS allows us to use a database to abstract the content away from the markup. There are a zillion of them, each with different backend UI's and different ways to doing things.

But CMSs are for web people. Even my beloved WordPress can be challenging to train/explain to someone who has no experience working with websites. Perhaps this is the motivation toward a new trend in CMSs I'm calling "light" CMSs. Each of them attempt to make the task of updating content on a website easier and more intuitive. This is largely at the cost of features. These are for simple, otherwise static websites where updating content is the name of the game.

Unify

Unify is the dead-simple, in-browser content editor that anyone can use. No CMS, no database, no backend interface, no proprietary tags or syntax. Just you, your website, and your browser.

Unify is still in private beta, but it sounds like it's going well and should be out soon. Unify left Beta in August 2009, and as of March 2010, version 1.2.6 is in development.

You simply apply class names to block level elements you wish to be editable. You log into Unify directly on the website you wish to edit. You then are looking directly at the website again, but can click on the editable parts to bring up an inline editor to edit the content and save it. Publishing then literally rewrites that file and makes the changes live.

 

CushyCMS

Finally, a free and truly simple CMS

I'm not 100% sure but I think CushyCMS might have been the first player in this market. They have been around a while, anyway. The theory is similar to Unify in that you apply a special class name to blocks of content you intend to be editable. You then set up an account at the CushyCMS website, provide FTP details for your site, and add the editable pages. Anyone with access to that account can then edit the content on that site. It's free, which is awesome, and has a premium component for branding it.

 

PageLime

PageLime is a hosted Content Management System (CMS) for designers, web agencies, and web developers. It allows you to manage text, images, and documents on your site by logging into a web-app that's hosted on our servers. The best part is that it doesn't matter where your site is hosted, it doesn't matter whether you use PHP, Java, or ASP (or no scripting platform), and you don't have to make a single change to your site architecture.

PageLime is a combo of CushyCMS and Unify. It's like CushyCMS in that you have an account on it that you provide FTP details and give your pages editable classes (although you can add multiple websites to a single account). It's like Unify in that it has a live page preview with clickable editable regions and save/publishing. PageLime is a free public beta.

 

Perch

Perch is a really little content management system for when you (or your clients) need to edit content without the hassle of setting up a big CMS.

Perch is a PHP based system, which does use a database, but is otherwise just as easy to set up as the others. Instead of applying class names to editable content, you make the editable content special PHP functions provided by the Perch class. Logging into the backend gives you access to edit these specific regions. Perch is completely self hosted and brandable, meaning it will work for life and no third parties are ever involved again.

Comments

  1. One of the advantage of these CMS is that it is small and simple, developers can easily improve it and change it as they want while others are so complicating.
    However, they are lack of plug-ins and support from the wide community.
    But I like Unify, I use it for my school web database project :D

  2. I have used CushyCMS on several projects, and while it is EXTREMELY easy to set up and teach non-technical clients to use, it is just as EXTREMELY limited, and sometimes throws in an extra where it really shouldn’t and messes up the layout of the page.

    I still use it, but I just have to be very careful of how I implement. But hey, can’t complain much- it’s free.

  3. Martin
    Permalink to comment#

    Concrete5 is another GREAT option. It isn’t light like these one’s, but when it comes to “USER” usability it can’t be beat by any of the current CMS’ out there.

    • Thanks, Martin. I am a very technical guy, so for me the ideal solution could include quite a bit on my end. It just needs to be a as bloody *simple* as possible for my end users. Or should I say, it should be as *intuitive* as possible. They just need to perceive that it is easy. Oh — and, they better not mess anything up. And, it needs to have at least a few features for layout.

    • Permalink to comment#

      Another vote for Concrete5. Couldn’t be any simpler for end users.

    • I’ve got to agree with Martin. In terns of being absolutely painless for my customers, I have yet to see anything that beats concrete5.

  4. Ali
    Permalink to comment#

    I think you should include Pixie CMS in the group of “Light” CMS systems.

    http://www.getpixie.co.uk/

    It’s incredibly easy/intuitive to use and the template system is purely CSS based without touching the markup or PHP. It is database driven but it’s the simplest CMS I have encountered so far and it has modules for things like portfolio’s, galleries, reviews and so on. Plug and play:)

    You can try the demo here:

    http://demo.getpixie.co.uk/admin/

    I’m in no way affiliated with Pixie CMS however I do think it’s an awesome little product that deserves to be mentioned in the “Light” CMS discussion.

    Oh and, it’s also open source and completely free.

    • TeMc
      Permalink to comment#

      Somehow the admin interface and website elements make me think of WordPress. Maybe a bit too much.

      But hey, WordPress is actually a nice “light” CMS aswell, isn’t it ?

    • Ali
      Permalink to comment#

      Haven’t notice such a similarity and I use WordPress extensively.

      Also, Pixie is much lighter and simpler with far less options which makes it easier and less intimidating to people who are not tech savvy.

    • Thanks for sharing Pixie, Ali!
      I had a look at the demo, it’s quite a nice, clean little package.
      Do you know if there’s an e-commerce plugin or module for it at all?

      And thanks for the article too, Chris! :)

    • Permalink to comment#

      I didn´t know Pixie and it is a great solution for some projects as you say, thank you million for your comment, I am already using that :))

      THANK U ALI!!

    • Ali
      Permalink to comment#

      You are welcome mate. Such a good product but relatively unknown.

  5. Permalink to comment#

    I have used Cushy personally. It is an easy WSIWYG editor for someone with zero web knowledge. Just one issue. It distroys the code. Adds extra spaces, etc. And being the OCD that I am, it makes it difficult to go in and not clean that up each time. One thing I would like to see added, is the ability to assign custom classes that the designer can specify. Other than those two things, I think Cushy is a simple and very easy option.

  6. Chris
    Permalink to comment#

    Check Unify – 2nd line. Shouldn’t it be “apply” rather than “apple” ?
    Nice article though.

  7. Permalink to comment#

    I like indexhibit.

    http://www.indexhibit.org/

    Just checked out the Pixie CMS, it’s very cool.

  8. Looks like Adobe is trying to get in on it too.

    http://incontextediting.adobe.com/

  9. Hello – Drew here from Perch. Thanks for featuring us in the post!

    One of our design goals, which is perhaps a bit different from some of the other light CMSs, is that we care a lot about web standards and semantic markup so it was important to us that designers both;

    a) didn’t have to put anything like unsemantic class names into their HTML, and

    b) remained in control of the HTML that the CMS creates

    I think the really fun stuff is tucked away in the templates system. I wrote a bit about it on my personal blog – http://allinthehead.com/342

    Thanks again for the nice round-up.

    • Able Chase
      Permalink to comment#

      lol just took a look at your site. Stuff like this doesn’t really fill me with confidence in your semantic abilities I have to say…

    • Able Chase
      Permalink to comment#

      e.g. empty div with an id of “leaves”. wtf?

    • Permalink to comment#

      Hey, Able. An empty div with an id of ‘leaves’ is a universally accepted semantic-HTML convention meaning: “don’t be a jerk, this is a personal site, so semantics are entirely relativized to my extensive development team of…me, which is also why I get to recode this ever so often as I go along–cuz I pay me so much.” Context is everything, but hey! That’s semantics for you.

    • The key point being that I’m free to make any choices about how to code my pages – without the CMS dictating how I should work things, or what class names I might have to litter my code with.

      You might not like my leaves (and actually, I’d be the first to admit that the site needs some work, fair enough), but there is actually very rarely one right answer to a problem, just options with varying pros and cons. The important thing is that the CMS keeps all those options open to you.

    • Able Chase
      Permalink to comment#

      “we care a lot about web standards and semantic markup”

      Your words, not mine.

  10. Have you tried Concrete5? Its a new ‘up-and-coming’ cms that has some really nice features.

    http://concrete5.com/

    • concrete5 is nice but hardly “light”

      Nobody has mentioned Frog cms… I’ve used that a couple times for a light cms and it’s great, easy admin interface for clients, easy to modify and setup…. good stuff.

      http://www.madebyfrog.com

      Also another one I’ve used is SilverStripe – only used it once but was a good experience: http://www.silverstripe.com

    • So glad you mentioned Frog! Frog CMS is a wonderful CMS that I’ve used on several sites over the past year. Easy to setup, and with the new plugins that developers are creating, easy to extend.

      There’s an active community of friendly helpful people on the Frog forums.

  11. gemmes
    Permalink to comment#

    EditEase is another FREE option

    http://code.google.com/p/editease/

  12. Permalink to comment#

    I love CushyCMS because my clients love it! They actually use it. I’ve got a premium account and promote it as a feature when I sell hosting.

    • Really good point, Owen. I want my clients to feel, in their perception, that it is easy. That, along with them not screwing things up or making them ugly. A bit of a tall order sometimes, but …..

  13. I like this concept. A colleague suggested I look into Cushy for some websites I was working on. However, I don’t like the face that I’m handing over FTP credentials to a third party. And what business model is keeping these companies in business? IF they go bankrupt, what happens to the credentials I’ve given them? I know I can easily change the login/password on my FTP server, but that’s an extra hassle in my already busy workload.

  14. LuK
    Permalink to comment#

    Also check out Editease (it’s a micro CMS similar to those rounded up here but slightly different), it’s not very well documented but that’s not really necessary in my opinion, a good look at the demopage helps a lot…and it’s really simple but functional!

    Demopage: http://editease.jquerystuff.net/
    username: demo
    PW: access
    –> where to log in? –> Go to the bottom right corner, there’s a link called “Admin”, you click on it and log in, then you see what’s nice about this CMS =)…

    Homepage: http://code.google.com/p/editease/
    Other Page, more or less same info: http://www.ohloh.net/p/editease
    Blog Article: http://www.joshuaslife.com/tag/editease

    The whole thing is a one man show I think…but very nice indeed!

    Looked also into Pixie and the others you rounded up, very nice but already a little bit more CMS like (backend stuff etc.) or in other cases you have to make some account or something, I don’t like that =)…

    And a question to Chris out of topic: How did you do the red text-marker color in your site??? So nice =)!

  15. Very nice article and useful cms systems. I will check out editease, it sounds useful!

  16. Edward
    Permalink to comment#

    NC-CMS at http://www.nconsulting.ca/nc-cms/ is also a nice and simple CMS. There’s no way of adding new pages etc but for a site that’s basically static it works great.
    Regards, Edward

  17. r_jake
    Permalink to comment#

    I think you’ve brought to light (no pun intended) something that hasn’t really been properly addressed in the CMS arena – most clients find CMS backends unfathomable and for small projects they are overkill.

    WP has been getting a lot of attention as a CMS of late – but try to explain to most clients what the difference between a post, category, tag, page, etc is and they stare back at you as if you’ve been speaking Klingon.

    I’ve used ‘Web Yep’ [url]http://www.obdev.at/products/webyep/index.html[/url] a couple of times – it sounds similar to unity, and only requires PHP (no Database) but is a bit clunky.

    Great article. I’m definitely going to explore some of these further.

  18. Well, I had a go with CushyCMS and Page Lime.

    Page Lime looks great. There’s an FTP key feature to encrypt the FTP password so nobody gets to see it if anything ever goes wrong.

    Unfortunately when I was testing I encountered some .net server errors on their side, not to mention some javascript errors when trying to edit images. I will persist though, because it seems to be absolutely exactly what I need for some clients.

    I’ll cjeck out pixie in a mo.

    • Faris…shoot me an email

      tom[at]pagelime.com

      We would love to get whatever bug you encountered nailed down and fixed. Is it JavaScript and IE7? Please let us know. Thanks! – Tom

    • Will do Tom. It javascript and IE8, mostly to do with picture editing.

      Just to emphasise to people reading this though — out of the products mentioned, PageLime looks like it rocks for the kind of thing I need – that is for ordinary, non-technical users to be able to edit content, **change images** AND for my FTP password to be secure.

  19. I prefer to use http://surrealcms.com over CushyCMS the interface is better and has a few more features. Also SurrealCMS seems to be involving with new features and updates. I was previously using Cushy until I found surreal.

    • Thanks, Brian! You’re absolutely right, we work hard to make sure that we’re giving our users the best possible experience. Many of the features that they’ve been asking for have already been implemented, and more are on the way. You can expect another update in July :)

      Thanks again for the mention!

    • Jon Smith

      I also use surrealcms over cushy. More features, just seemed more slick… My client likes it too. I use the free version at the moment, but considering upgrading if I get more people who want this sort of thing.

    • I’m glad someone brought up Surreal CMS, it doesn’t seem to get as much attention as Cushy, but I prefer it, too, due to its added functionalities.

      I love this new movement with CMS systems, it means web designers can just get on with building their site without having to worry about templates and restrictions. And these ‘light’ CMS are also really easy to use from a client’s perspective, so it’s a win-win situation.

      Looking forward to the update!

      Both Unify and PageLime also seem very promising…

  20. Josh
    Permalink to comment#

    I’m a fan of Page Lime above anything else I’ve tried because you set each block up separately. So it retains the overall feel without damaging the template. The client just logs in and clicks on the “edit this” block.. very simple.

    I did try Perch, and I found it to be very awkward. Pixie looks interesting though… I’ll have to check that out.

  21. Thanks a bunch for this writeup. Will be very useful for clients intimidated by WP.

  22. You can also check out MiniCWB – small text database based CMS. Check out http://www.grafxsoftware.com

  23. There are a few plug-ins for WordPress that try to make it more “CMS”ey, Flutter and Pods.

    Flutter confuses the hell out of me as far as set up goes… but once you do it, you can create custom write panels that can be edited on the front-end of the site while the user is logged in. This seems super useful and zero learning curve for a not-so-tech-savvy client.

    Pods is also great and has better documenatation, although a little more obfuscated in the back-end. It’s easier and more robust than implementing text-widgets or custom fields all over, and they are independent of page/posts so you can put them directly in templates if you choose.

    These other options look good too…but I’d rather not give up the features of WordPress.

  24. Steve Nelson
    Permalink to comment#

    Cool that you have identified this as a trend. I had made note of some myself but didn’t really catch on to its trendiness! One I was impressed by that’s not on the list is widgetfinger:

    http://www.widgetfinger.com/

    I make sites for tiny little clients whose needs are modest but who don’t want to be tied to contacting the designer for little updates like announcements. One of these sounds perfect for that sort of client.

  25. Hey Everyone,
    This is Tom from PageLime. I wanted to invite everyone that’s reading this post to check out a preview of our completely new, overhauled, BRANDABLE! PageLime. Screenshots are at :

    http://www.pagelime.com/preview

    If anyone is interested in beta testing, trying out the new system, or just talking about whatever drop me an email:

    tom[at]pagelime.com

    We took what (you) designers told us would be the most beneficial upgrades (brand ability, color scheming, cleaner higher contrast streamlined interface) and implemented it in an improved system.

    Too the hundreds of users who signed up for PageLime in the 3 weeks we have been active. Thanks for all your support! What other CMS team turns our a whole new system for you after 21 days on the market?

    Thanks Chris for including us in this write up. Glad we we’re on your radar.

  26. savagecorp
    Permalink to comment#

    I tried setting up Cushy CMS for a client and there were serious problems with integration into GoDaddy. Tried to fix is a few times but in the end, had to go another route.

    another GoDaddy fail.

  27. Ben
    Permalink to comment#

    I had a go with CushyCMS with a client a few months ago but unfortunately the client decided to go with Adobe Contribute instead. I much prefer being able to mitigate a client’s ability to muck with page elements as much as possible by using the isolating nature of these little CMS clients but it doesn’t always work out that way.

  28. Pete
    Permalink to comment#

    Talk about light CMS/blog, you cannot miss out
    1 – http://nanocms.in/
    2 – http://pritlog.com

  29. Personally I think working with a larger CMS like Joomla is a better idea when you have an unfamiliar client. There will be more support documentation for the end user maintained and updated by the community.

    • Josh
      Permalink to comment#

      While I agree in principal, in practice I’ve found this to be very difficult. This is far from an exception with Joomla. I think Chris nailed it when he said even WordPress can prove to be tricky to explain for someone who isn’t familiar with web systems (or even database driven software).

      Joomla manages to be far more confusing than WordPress from a training level primarily (imho) due to the back end naming the functions so bizarrely. The steps to add a menu item and tie a page to it is too much for clients that don’t do updates every other day.

      CMSMadeSimple is the only solution that I’ve found that has nearly as many functions as Joomla out of the box (WordPress seems to match it, but with alot of customization) while remaining fairly user friendly (at least the functions are named correctly and are straight forward).

    • Permalink to comment#

      Haven’t tried CMSMadeSimple, but you’re absolutely right about Joomla. The naming conventions give both developers and users headaches.

    • Josh
      Permalink to comment#

      Give it a try… honestly, the way CMSMadeSimple constructed their template system is an absolute dream. It’s by far the easiest, most designer friendly CMS on the market.

      Essentially, you create your HTML exactly the way you want it, optimize it, etc, then cut and paste it into a blank template in CMSMS, then stick {content} where you want the dynamic content, {menu} where you want the menu (or just use a static one) and so on.

      For a basic CMS where the client just wants flexibility to edit and create pages without creating tons of users and custom functions, it’s my favorite choice.

    • Yes, I mean, I really think as developers or designers, it is easy to get excited by the potential of a solution. And then, because of all our expertise, and comfort with computers and everything, it’s not that hard for us to move from the potential to the reality.

      But, if a client is really going to be able to use it, and if they do not have a dedicated staff to work on it, or someone who really particularly gets it, their ability to ford the distance bewteen “potential” and “reality” is going to be a lot less than mine.

      So much less, that I may have a hard time understanding it, but that’s just how it is sometimes.

  30. You missed Konductor. Not free, but definitely lightweight, and the UI is focused at being easy for your client: http://www.konductor.net/

  31. If you want lite, have a look at lightneasy.
    In page editing but also built in news, RSS, gallery, links and downloads management.

    if you want some plugins, look at lightneasy. :) – more galleries, forum, wiki etc

    Great little CMS. I am not associated with it except as a user, but I am starting to build up a help site for it at http://dedide.info/teaching3

    http://lightneasy.org

    • Rebecca

      About to say something on the subject of lightneasy. Yes the designs that it currently has available are not the best there are, yet there’s true flexibility on the templating system.

      It is worth noting that while there is a SQLite version and a no database version (on which some things will not be available), version 3 will add MySQL suppport.

      One of the best features it has is that you are able to develop multiple layouts for the same site and apply them on a per page basis, which is kind of nice as you can pre-label them to help clients know which one they should use for News, Product or Static pages.

      Be sure to stop by and take a look, Fernando will surely be happy to see you all :D

  32. Good review Chris. I’ve used Cushy CMS on a few (small) client sites and swear by it. Then again, I’m a meticulous coder, so nothing _should_ go wrong. Plus their support team are nice guys for Scots or whatever they are.

    That being said, these are all good choices. My favorite thing being that little or (in the case of Cuchy) no training is required. Even if I _am_ charging clients, I’d rather be doing the fun stuff.

  33. No mention yet of CMS From Scratch, which is another nice “low-fat” CMS. Free/GPL, file-based/no database, and very fast to develop with and use. A big advantage I’ve found with CMS from Scratch is the ease with which you can work your own PHP into it. So although it’s only a simple system, it can be deceptively powerful.

    I’m going to look at some of these others too. Perch is the only other one mentioned so far that I’ve tried and liked. I’m not entirely comfortable with the extent to which JavaScript is a requirement for most of these systems to work, but this seems a trend with web-apps in general. The first system that is entirely useable without JS and entirely beautiful with it will be the system for me :)

    • Donna
      Permalink to comment#

      I’m glad you mentioned CMSFromScratch. I think it does not get enough mention for being such a simple yet powerful cms. Watching the video does not do it justice. You have to play with it to realize how nice it is when you are looking for a simple file-based solution.

    • David Jacobs
      Permalink to comment#

      I would agree, I love this little CMS.

  34. I’ve created MANY sites with Umbraco, a .NET cms which is a Light as can be because it only provides a basis. I’ve worked with many different PHP cms’en but I love Umbraco these days! As for the developer AS for the user great features and possibilities.
    Have a look and perhaps try it at Umbraco.

  35. Thanks for the mention of Unify, Chris. However, Unify is not a CMS …or anything like a CMS. It’s just a simple content editor. Any CMS, no matter how “light” is complex. Unify is simple.

    Other systems (shown here or anywhere else) require databases, backend interfaces, proprietary tags or syntax, they’re hosted or require plugins or monthly subscriptions, etc… Unify requires none of this and you host it on your own website in one folder. Simple.

    It’ll be out in commercial release soon and you’ll have the opportunity to see what I mean by simple. Thanks.

    Kind regards,
    Andy

  36. I built a “light” CMS called SiteLander.

    http://webtrans1.com/sitelander

    It is actually a web site builder (meant to build your site from the ground-up) and CMS. It is very very easy to use (for non-web designers) and is very light but ingenious. I invite you to take a look at it, try it (there is a live demo).
    And maybe add it to your list if you find it as nice as i do…

  37. Peter
    Permalink to comment#
  38. My favorite light CMS at the moment is CMS.txt.

    Basically just type out a txt file for configuration. It’ll read in HTML or PHP and drop it into a ridiculously easy templating system.

    Definitely worth a look if you’re cool with HTML but want sweet URLs and easy templating in 30 seconds. :)

  39. Really good examples, i will definately use some of these on simple websites that only require a texteditor.

    We have a similar CMS (Tervix Touch, but in Swedish) that also uses “click to edit” functionality, It’s free but it requires custom integration eg. no installation or register forms avalible. http://www.tervix.se/?p=61
    Somewhat advanced for editing other areas then main text.

  40. kate
    Permalink to comment#

    Does anyone know anything about lightcms?

    http://www.speaklight.com/

    • Not sure, but just checking it out, the design is gorgeous, and the initial impression of the UI is great. And I must say, those are good signs, IMHO. … We shall check it out …..

  41. These sound great and one thing about a cms is that if you are developing for clients, I think it should always be simple enough to edit content for non-tech savvy people.

    Although I have to say wordpress is quite simple, especially if you want to look at full scale cms like drupal or joomla and that’s when things really get more complex. Still can conquer them, but it takes more time and dedication.

    I wouldn’t think simply changing content on wordpress for a client is difficult, but perhaps I haven’t taken a good enough look at both sides of the coin.

  42. CushyCMS seems to my fav for these kinds of things. I had a look at the others and will probably change to use a couple more. Thanks for this amazing list.

  43. CushyCMS has always been my favorite although I haven’t tried PageLime which I think will be nice….will try it soon….

  44. Some interesting thought on Simple CMS here. Does anyone have an opinion on Open Source vs Proprietary CMS software?

    We’d love to hear your thoughts ahead of tomorrow’s London CMS Debate, and will put the best questions to our panel, which includes Gartner and Econsultancy.

    Tweet us – @SquizUK using the #CMSDebate hashtag, or leave a comment on our blog: https://www.squiz.co.uk/resources/open-source-cms-blog/the-great-web-cms-debate-open-source-or-proprietary-software-you-decide

  45. A couple folks mentioned that they use Surreal CMS instead of Cushy, so I thought I’d add my two cents in. I am also a Cushy convert and the main reason I switched over to Surreal was because I tried it out, liked the interface better, and when I had a question, their support was fast and very helpful.

    Overall, there are many similar features between the two, but Surreal seems to be more customer-oriented with a solid, easy-to-use UI whereas Cushy is a bit jumpy and prone to errors.

    I’ve also tried the new PageLime CMS. They have a couple of added features, but it’s not something I would be ready to hand directly over to clients. The UI is all over the place, and I’m not personally a fan of lime green :P

    Ultimately, I’m very happy with Surreal, but more importantly, my clients love it, so that’s what I’m sticking with for the time being.

  46. I was facing TWO projects that required easy content editing and was facing the rather convuluted task of doing it with drupal, the only CMS i have experience with.

    Thanks to this article im now going with one of the listed options.

    Less work, less cost for the client, more happy for me!

    thx Chris!

  47. I’ve looked at the websites of many CMSs, looking for ‘the one’. I’ve used WordPress and ExpressionEngine, but as said above, they are a bit much for simple sites that just need editable content. I don’t want another big learning curve, so the first thing I look for is a clear, simple user guide. This is where I find most of the CMSs fail. I’ve bookmarked many that I’ve just heard about on this page, but most I expect will be rejected because of the way they are presented. (For example, I’ve heard great things about CMSMS, but I got fed up trying to find clear instructions on how to use it.) I admit that Cushy and those like it do look easy (their videos are great) but I’m not keen on remotely hosted solutions.

    Recently I took the plunge and tried Perch. Being based on PHP includes sounded great to me, and indeed I’ve found it easy to learn and use. Just what I was looking for. There aren’t a lot of instructions in the user guide, but that’s basically because there is not much to learn–which is just the way I like it. I think I’ve found ‘the one’.

  48. … don’t forget about zimplit. Really intuitiv, open-source and light-weight (no database)

    http://www.zimplit.com

  49. well

    wordpress + flutter + role manager + next gen gallery = super easy for the client

  50. We’ve developed a light cms, simply called .cms http://www.dotcommediainc.com/solutions_dotcms.html. You are welcome to take it for a test drive if you like and we would appreciate your feedback. Contact me anytime.

    email: dennis@dotcommediainc.com
    skype: dennis_powers

  51. This is awesome.

    You should update this post (or write a new one!) according the comments. there are a lot of resources.

    Thanks.

    -Mahmud
    Mohammad Mahmud Kabir

    http://www.MahmudKabir.com

  52. Paul
    Permalink to comment#

    Great post – lots of great resources. Here is a very light CMS – a single PHP page with no need for a database. It uses comment tags to define editable areas – which can be edited as text or HTML: http://www.tero.co.uk/scripts/onepagecms.php

  53. Thanks for this post!

    I am glad to hear other designers speak of how even WordPress is a little much for some clients to figure out.

    Even though, I am still using it as the main platform for clients, I am now giving them the heads up that there’s a little bit they’ll have to learn, and it’s not going to be my job to do all of the teaching. That there are wonderful free videos out there, and tutorials, and if needed they can even hire a tutor for a few hours to help them.

    Sometimes, a new client just surprises me with how frustrated they get, let’s say, uploading a file. So, I just have to keep learning how people are not like me. They can be intimidated by the computer, in ways I don’t even understand. Or, they can not be.

    Anyway, I am excited to check these out, because I have been thinking about just this, of late.

  54. Hy
    Permalink to comment#

    There’s a super simple content editor out there that basically lets the client visit his webpage, right click anywhere on the page and press “admin login” or something. Once logged in, he can see all the editable regions, make changes, and save.

    Anyone know what this one is called? I forgot and can’t find it anywhere!!

    • Permalink to comment#

      Try EdtWrx

      http://www.editwrx.com/features.html

      Cut from their info:

      “Login From The Page
      Let your users login directly from the web page instead of through the main login page. A particularly useful trick for File Restricted users because it lets you eliminate the Open File and SaveAs icons from those user’s toolbars. Simply add a snippet of code to the page’s head section that watches a visitor’s keyboard keystrokes – if they tap their ESC key three times a login prompt will appear (AOL users need to type “&edit” instead). Go ahead, try it – a login prompt snippet is watching your keystrokes on this page. ”

      Chuck

  55. Charles Dewey
    Permalink to comment#

    No one has mentioned WebYep

    http://www.obdev.at/products/webyep/index.html

    It is very easy in-browser CMS which works straight out of Dreamweaver via a plug-in. Really easy to implement and very user friendly and smart. I’ve used it for a couple of sites and like it.

  56. Just checking out CushyCMS… and so far, I like what I see. It would make creating sites for those that I know are “less than average” computer users a lot easier.
    Although… I have one question about it… How secure is it if you were to say… have some things that were being sold through your site?

  57. Jones
    Permalink to comment#

    You should try desamaru cms. It is cross browser compatible, have high security only two entry point index.php and ajax.php, htaccess filtration. Try demo of desamaru I guarantee you would love it. For more info http://desamaru.com/

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