Content Management Systems (CMS) for the .NET Platform


16 Responses to “Content Management Systems (CMS) for the .NET Platform”

  1. Nestor Says:

    I would take a closer look at DNN. If you are a C# shop you know that you can combine .net languages. DNN can be extended by way of C# dlls if you like.

  2. Nathan Says:

    Yes, I know – the VB thing is really a pretty petty bias on my part, but I like to study the code of the open source tools I use, and I just really don’t like to read VB.NET. That isn’t the main reason we passed over DNN though, I’ve looked at it pretty closely several times over the years and ultimately decided against it (although is has been more than a year now so maybe it deserves another look).

  3. David Maffei Says:


    I enjoyed reading your assesment of both our product and our competitors. I would be glad to chat with you about a pricing model that we offer that you may not be aware of. based on your comment, “I like this company a lot – BUT – you need to buy a server license for each URL” it would seem that you have a slight mis-interpertation of the Ektron pricing model. Again, I would be glad to clarify.


    David T. Maffei
    Director of Sales
    Ektron, Inc.

  4. Tamas Biro Says:

    Hi Nathan!
    I am the product manager of Sense/Net Portal Engine TNG. I am more that happy to see your post, and many thanks for writing good things about us. 🙂
    TNg will be available for download in September. We are working on a 1st release, that is good enough for a public download. As of now, we are working on the portal of one of our big customers, so we do not have time for managing a public beta program. Keep checking back to our blog.

  5. David Lund Says:

    Nathan — I usually just read blogs and don’t comment much but couldnt help myself since I know David Maffei and I have used Ektron (and I like to engage in open source vs commercial discussions).

    That being said, you have a tough decision it seems. Some time back we were engaged by a client to do a similar review of CMS packages (.net was a requirement) and despite the time lapse between our projects, we found many of the same options. You’re right, the UI hasn’t changed much in design but then again they keep adding new features. The reason I wanted to post was that you noted how helpful they are and that is my main reason for choosing Ektron on an ongoing basis. It is not just sales that is helpful, their support team is also and that is a huge requirement for me. From a commercial standpoint, pound for pound, I like Ektron.

    But in open source land, now that is a harder choice to make. I have used DNN, Rainbow and Umbraco. I liked Umbraco the most and have used it for projects. However, when going through the risk-benefit analysis with the client, it was always with that discussion on the differences between open source and commercial support (or open source with commercial support features) which is not always an apples-to-apples comparison. As a developer it might of note that with Umbraco you load the templates through the CMS admin itself where in many other systems you build the templates in VS and cms api’s and push them to the server. As many things in development, each has their own benefits, so the development process for each product needs to be considered. PHP offers an even broader range of open source CMS products with vary styles of support and for the right company/project might be good options as well.

    Wow, more long winded than I thought, but these things may be of interest to you, if not, well, I tried. I will be interested to see where you head going forward. It may be that the at the end of the day, you choose as I do, a commercial product (like Ektron) for those instances where you wish the security of knowing that you can call a live person and open source when the client/project is more suited toward community based support. Don’t get me wrong, there are some fantastic community supported projects, but I have had occasion that ‘my particular issue’ was of little interest to the community as a whole but of large interest to me so I keep that in mind too.

    Thanks for putting this out there,


  6. Fredrik Haglund, INEXOR Says:

    I think EPiServer CMS is an excellent framework for developing web sites. Easy to use and very well integrated in ASP.NET. EPiServer is based in Europe and they started their global expansion programme last year, so I’m sorry you did not find so many partners i US yet.

    I work for a company specialised in EPiServer, let me know if you need help with evaluation and licenses.


  7. Nathan Says:

    @Fredrik – thanks for the offer, but if I am unable to contact anyone in the company directly (and I tried pretty hard), then it isn’t for us. I shudder to think about what support will be like if I can’t even get a salesperson to talk to me!

  8. Nathan Says:

    @David L. – thanks for the valuable feedback. As I said in my post, if we were a consulting firm creating solutions for clients, I probably would have sighed on the dotted line with Ektron. Our licensing requirements are a bit trickier though. Not so say they don’t have a model that can work for us, it is just more complicated.

  9. Mayur Upadhyaya Says:

    Hiya Nathan,

    We have begun to use Cuyahoga as our chosen framework, and its a real joy. The 2.0 beta has some great features that work for us and our plan to move into SaaS.

    We are building some social networking modules at the moment, I’ll let you know how we get on.


  10. Ryan Roberts Says:

    DNN is a terrible, terrible base as an application platform of any sort. To provide cheap webhosting for starcraft fansites and catteries it does the job. For anything else, just run away; the code smells like a sewer and the community is cliquey and defensive.

    I’m a long time Umbraco user who has just started looking at N2 CMS, and from what I can see it is a very nice design, with great code quality and test coverage.

    Unlike most CMS’s I have seen, it gets its document model from your code, which you decorate with attributes to specifiy editor types. A very elegant model indeed if you do not need to give schema design time abilities to your end users. Like umbraco 4, it uses masterpages and aspx for its templating, so it is all fully source controllable – that was a big problem with umbraco <4.

  11. David Lund Says:

    No worries Nathan. I just found it very interesting that we had such similar searches, even if for diff reason, and had to chime in since I knew Maffei. If you can work it out licensing wise, I dont think you would be disappointed with Ektron, but I leave that to you. 🙂 If you do talk to Maffei, tell him I said Hi!

    Take care and good luck.

  12. Nathan Says:

    @ Mayur – I didn’t know Cuyahoga had a 2.0 beta – very exciting. Please do let me know how your social networking modules come along, especially if you decide to open source them 🙂

  13. Nathan Says:

    Ryan, I haven’t really even looked at N2, but I will now. We do not need to give schema editing capabilities to end users, that model sounds interesting. Have you contributed to the Umbraco source? I believe I’ve seen your name around Codeplex in connection with Umbraco before. (It stands out because an old friend of mine is named Ryan Roberts. I presume you are not he 🙂

  14. Nathan Says:

    Thanks David, I’ll tell him you said hi.

  15. Ryan Roberts Says:

    >Have you contributed to the Umbraco source?

    You have probably seen my name on a search engine extension for umbraco that handles related pages by metadata and tag cloud type scenarios. You may well have also cursed me had you tried to use it before a colleage of mine pointed at the correct index file.

    So I am a Ryan Roberts, but not the Ryan Roberts.

  16. Mayur Upadhyaya Says:

    Hiya Nathan, we are planning to open source them. We are currently just out of prototyping and now into building the module for a couple of clients.

    Send me your email address and I’ll follow up with details of what we are up to and where we are at.



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