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My friend is going to start his own business and he wants to have a simple web site where he could exhibit some videos and pictures.

As he has absolutely no experience in programming, he is considering hiring a programmer to build it for him.

But I think maybe a free and open source CMS system would save him the expense.

Unfortunately, there are so many CMSs that I don't know which of them are worth trying.

Can u recommend some CMSs?

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4 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

Picking up on what Virtuosi said:

A CMS is definitely a good idea, but I would advise having him hire someone to implement a website using a CMS. It should be quicker and higher quality if implemented by a professional. That, in the end, will be better for his business.

I'd suggest the actual technology is secondary. Any of the common, widely used CMSs will work sufficiently well - WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, others.

The key is a good implementation, ideally one that he can maintain himself ongoing. Expert setup to get things going the right way will avoid much pain. Pitch it as money well spent because he'll avoid making all the common mistakes that all non-specialists make.

Finding the specialist is the key - find someone local who can do the job well for a reasonable price, and go along with whatever technology they recommend.

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+1 - That's what I meant, but you put it more eloquently. –  Virtuosi Media Aug 22 '10 at 17:55
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I'd recommend using Open Source CMS to try out a few different CMS demos. Some of the more popular CMS's are Wordpress, Joomla, and Drupal, but many of the smaller CMS's would work as well.

I'd caution, however, against advising him to not hire a programmer. The quality of the website, CMS or not, will not be as high if it is done by someone who is not technical and doesn't understand the best practices of web design. A CMS is definitely a good idea, but I would advise having him hire someone to implement a website using a CMS. It should be quicker and higher quality if implemented by a professional. That, in the end, will be better for his business.

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Building small CMS with Django or RoR is quite simple, and, in my opinion it's usually quite easier to maintain, update and extend then solutions such as Joomla or Drupal, as they mostly bring pain at the end.

But you see, no matter which solution you choose, it's all about experience, you will have to know the basics behind the web server, some programing language, FTP/sFTP access, databases and so on... It is easy for a non programmer to get the small things wrong, which can difference between good and bad site.

Definitely find someone who has experience in this domain and pay them to do and maintain their work if you are looking for production site regardless if it is a Joomla or Django or insert name here powered CMS.

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He can go with any of the open source CMS as WordPress, Drupal, Joomla or try to look for non-paid versions of commercial CMSs as Kentico CMS: http://www.kentico.com/freecms.aspx

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