Dynamic site code: Slash? NucleusCMS? Scoop?

I am looking to build a full-featured dynamic website, and am wondering if anyone here has any experience with Slash, Scoop, Nucleus or variants, spinoffs or other systems. I’m especially interested in any experience loading and administrating these on DH. Some of these use PHP or Perl or combinations, but I don’t have enough experience to weigh the pros and cons of each.

I expect to customize the look and feel of my site quite a bit, but will need to be able to use all the common features as articles, comments, personal blogs, karma ratings, news feeds, trackback, etc. I also want something that can handle larger traffic loads and database builds. (I don’t expect anything as big as Slashdot, but don’t want to build my way into a corner, either.)

Any insights or pointers would be MOST WELCOME!


Is there a reason you’re avoiding the nukes? (Postnuke, CPGnuke or PHPnuke) They will all run at Dreamhost in a shared environment, have the features you are looking for and can handle pretty large server loads/members.

I would recommend Postnuke.

If you are building something that you think will get REALLY big, you might want to consider springing for a dedicated server. In a shared environment your performance is affected by the other users in the sql server and your hosting server.

Well, to be honest, I’m avoiding the Nukes because of their terrible reputation for architecture, security and community. Maybe I’m wrong, but there is a lot of unhappiness expressed by ex-Nukers who migrated to other CMSs, and I feel I’d be a fool to walk into a community with so much bad feeling coming out of it.

But not to shut you down: Why do you like Nuke? Especially PostNuke over the others? What are its advantages over other CMSs, in your opinion? I would really value hearing your views based upon real experience. I’m kinda playing Marco Polo on this issue, not knowing enough PHP and virtually no Perl to be able to evaluate the systems myself based upon objective criteria.

Right now I’ve narrowed choices down to Scoop, Plone, Drupal, Typo3, Geeklog, Slash, PHPSlash and Mambo. Some of these require mod_perl, I realize. I think DH is great, and I value the stability, redundancy and multiple features and scripts supported, but for this project I’m considering another webhost, if need be. There are hosting companies with great backbone connections, very advantageous pricing and robust support and features. Even at $99 (which still would not provide the recommended RAM for many of these CMSs), DH’s dedicated hosting is not competitive enough for this bootstrapped project.

I manage several sites on DH, however, and plan to take all of them to dynamic hosting without necessarily migrating to another host; I may try Nuke and other PHP-based non-mod_perl CMSs on these sites, once this one biggie is out of the way.

Thanks for your response!

Well, I hear ya there. I have had security issues with PHPnuke and the, ahem, community can be pretty nasty. But both Postnuke and CPGnuke are forks with far less security issues and generally nice communities supporting them. I chose PHPnuke originally because, at the time, it was the only portal that I could run here at DH that could give me all the features I needed. But, I would not choose it again and will migrate that site to postnuke in the near future. I have used Postnuke with few problems.

That said, Drupal and Scoop both look great. I think they are a little harder to get installed but feature rich and very customizable. More Bloggy than Slashy but perhaps that what you’re looking for.

Have you tried using this site?

You can log in to a bunch of different cms’s as an administrator and get a feel for how they work, what their limitations are.

Well, I have a few thoughts on this WRT running things at DH. My first choice a few years back would have been to run slashcode, since that was pretty much what most other things spired to be. The problem (as has already been mentioned) is that you can’t really run it on a DH shared account.

I then happily installed phpNuke and worked with it for a while, but that project is “idiosyncratic” to say the least – at the time the phpNuke community was giong through an implosion rebelling against the program’s author and their licensing issues.

So like a lot of people I jumped onto the postNuke fork. I actually run a bunch of stuff using it but that is largely our of laziness. As an early adopter there was a lot of promise but I see progress as being pretty slow (still not at a 1. release) and doing things like making major changes to the templating system. It is hardly the model of stability, but I am too lazy to make another big change. As a side note, I also find the postnuke.com site pretty poorly organized. At the end of the day I still feel bad because it lacks all of the slashcode features.

For lightweight work I have used Word Press, but that is more bloggy than a CMS. In my real word job I ran Plone for a heavy duty production installation – but you can’t run that at DH as it runs on a Zope server.

I would love to hear about the other LAMP projects mentioned in your post, I would be pleasantly surprised to learn if any of them are not approaching the full slash feature set.


Well, I’ve installed Drupal on two systems and Mambo on one. Both are working smoothly. The Drupal sites are clean and easy, I find, once the brief learning curve of how it’s assembled is covered. Mambo is much more difficult to learn, I think, mainly because it’s so darned “user friendly” that it’s hard to look under the hood and see what’s really happening.

At any rate, both operate quite smoothly on DH, both have robust developer communities, and both are quite secure (which was a complaint about Nuke). Plone would have been nice to try, but alas that will have to wait for dedicated hosting down the line. As it is, I’m quite happy with Drupal and where it’s going. The code is very clean and there is a lot of openness on the part of the primaries so new ideas are taken serious and batted around my some pretty smart peeps.