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Author Topic: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders  (Read 750 times)

mouser

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As most of you know we are in the process of migrating the main DC website to a new cms (see here), with the aim of making it easier to maintain the site and add new content.

One of the other things that we have done on DC is provide web hosting for some dc members to create their own websites, on a separate server (dcmembers.com).
We started out thinking that would be a really nice feature to offer dc members, but we have gradually done less and less of that over time.

The main reason is maintenance headaches.. It's basically running a shared server with lots of different user accounts and all the headaches that entails.  There are also security concerns with everyone running different web scripts and some being abandoned and not updated with security releases, etc.

The other reason is the proliferation over the years of free hosting services (blogger, github, etc.).



It still occurs to me that a compromise solution would be some kind of multi-user cms/blog system where we would only have to maintain one central piece of software and could create lots of individual user accounts, where each user could maintain their area and their software and blog writings..

It would be more restrictive in format (i.e. mostly uniform appearance of user pages), but that could also be an advantage in terms of consistency, and would have the advantage of sharing visitors and popularity and being able to have a shared news/release page, etc.

So my question is -- can anyone recommend some multi-user cms thing that is really designed to give each author their own (protected) "area" to create and maintain in, and host software for download, while offering some shared news/search/etc functions?

f0dder

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2017, 06:21 AM »
I understand your headaches wrt. maintenance and security, but...

It would be more restrictive in format (i.e. mostly uniform appearance of user pages), but that could also be an advantage in terms of consistency, and would have the advantage of sharing visitors and popularity and being able to have a shared news/release page, etc.
I'm not sure this is an advantage - this loses uniqueness of dcmembers pages, and you might as well run the member pages off donationcoder.com then?

Ath

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2017, 09:54 AM »
And it will invalidate the urls embedded in some/many of the software published, as well as any links in forummessages :(

Tuxman

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2017, 10:00 AM »
Quote
multi-user cms/blog system where we would only have to maintain one central piece of software and could create lots of individual user accounts

WordPress has a built-in "network" functionality (formerly known as "WordPress MU" for "Multi-User"). The only notable disadvantage is that it's still WordPress.

mouser

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2017, 10:43 AM »
I'm not talking about changing the existing member pages.. More for new ones.

Some people prefer to have complete control over the look of their site and design something unique and want to be able to choose what web framework they like best -- but some would prefer to be part of a larger team -- this would be more for people who wanted to be part of a team with a shared look.

Regarding invalidating urls: If we did make a new setup, which is by no means certain, and existing folks wanted to move over to it, we would use redirects to ensure all the old urls were still valid.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 10:56 AM by mouser »

rgdot

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2017, 12:55 PM »
WordPress multisite (subdomains), easy and good imo

Shades

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2017, 04:13 PM »
How about giving each user its own Joomla account, grant them access to blog functionality (which you might need to add) or their own landing page and then let each user use their own css on such a page?
This extension gets high marks on the official Joomla extension page:  https://www.hyde-des...xtensions/custom-css.

wraith808

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2017, 01:33 AM »
WordPress multisite (subdomains), easy and good imo

My experience with Wordpress is that it's double minded over whether it's a blogging platform or a CMS, to not good results.  It also takes a bit to maintain, as it's a very big surface for attack, and very popular.  You might take a look at Ghost, and the users could host their downloads offsite, i.e. Dropbox or something.

Tuxman

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2017, 08:15 AM »
Those are not even remotely as easy as WPMU, sadly.

rgdot

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2017, 04:47 PM »
The last im
WordPress multisite (subdomains), easy and good imo

My experience with Wordpress is that it's double minded over whether it's a blogging platform or a CMS, to not good results.  It also takes a bit to maintain, as it's a very big surface for attack, and very popular.  You might take a look at Ghost, and the users could host their downloads offsite, i.e. Dropbox or something.

Easy to maintain WordPress surely is :D Even compared to flat file and static file generators that might require fiddling with non-GUI/cli components. As for attacks and popularity, the server where they reside on must be secured, good passwords, up to date WP and plugins takes care of (I want to say 90%) of the problem.

mouser

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2017, 05:02 PM »
Wordpress does seem to be a target/recipient of attacks disproportionately, but i think having a single install, with minimal 3rd party extensions, which was kept always up to date, would be more secure than having a large number of different frameworks that were sporadically updated if ever..

f0dder

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2017, 02:07 PM »
Wordpress does seem to be a target/recipient of attacks disproportionately, but i think having a single install, with minimal 3rd party extensions, which was kept always up to date, would be more secure than having a large number of different frameworks that were sporadically updated if ever..
Emphasis mine.

Either you figure out a way to always auto-update to the newest version, while not breaking anything... or you have to do this manually, figuring out if an update will break things, looking for CVEs to see if you have to zomgupdatenow or if you can keep it on a regular schedule. You'll also have to prevent users from installing just any plugins, since that's how mass-defacements usually happen.

If somebody wants Wordpress, I think they should be going for a managed solution at Wordpress rather than dealing with it themselves.

wraith808

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Re: In search of a lightweight multi-user cms/blog for hosting coders
« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2017, 03:46 PM »
Wordpress does seem to be a target/recipient of attacks disproportionately, but i think having a single install, with minimal 3rd party extensions, which was kept always up to date, would be more secure than having a large number of different frameworks that were sporadically updated if ever..
Emphasis mine.

Either you figure out a way to always auto-update to the newest version, while not breaking anything... or you have to do this manually, figuring out if an update will break things, looking for CVEs to see if you have to zomgupdatenow or if you can keep it on a regular schedule. You'll also have to prevent users from installing just any plugins, since that's how mass-defacements usually happen.

If somebody wants Wordpress, I think they should be going for a managed solution at Wordpress rather than dealing with it themselves.


Thanks.  That was what I was saying.  And I had minimal plugins/themes.  And it's a pain.