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Plone CMS Hosting Review

This Plone CMS Hosting review covers the features and compatibility of Plone, and the pros and cons of Plone CMS. If you are looking for a large-scale, free content management system with a focus on security and universal accessibility, read more to find out about Plone CMS hosting.

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What is Plone?

Plone is an open source content management system based on the Python programming language and Zope application server. Development on Plone began in 1999, and the program was released in 2001. Plone is run by the Plone Foundation, a nonprofit organization, and not by an individual or a corporation.

Plone CMS can be used to run an intranet or web site. Its focus is on large organizations that have dynamic needs, such as: 

  • Corporations
  • Universities
  • Governments
  • Non profit organizations
  • Scientific web sites
  • Publishing and media outlets

Some of the organization that use Plone CMS hosting include:

  • NASA
  • Oxfam
  • Amnesty International
  • Nokia
  • eBay
  • Novell
  • Several national governments
  • Some state universities

What features does Plone CMS have?

Plone is meant to be very adaptable and dynamic, and sets a high priority on security and accessibility to those with different disabilities. It has extensive online support including online tutorial videos and manuals. It is available in 40 languages and integrates with numerous other program, including:

  • Salesforce
  • Active Directory
  • LDAP
  • SQL
  • Web Services
  • Oracle

Plone is designed to allow a lot of control over the content a web site owner needs to manage. Some of its features include:

  • Inline editing
  • Working copies
  • Collaboration
  • Versioning
  • Wiki support
  • Rules engine for content
  • Tables of contents automatically generated
  • Link checking
  • Search engine and human friendly URLs
  • Drag and drop content organization
  • Time-based publishing
  • Printable pages
  • RSS feeds
  • In-context editing
  • Cut/copy/paste editing

Plone is compatible with more databases than most open source content management systems, such as:

  • MySQL
  • PostgreSQL
  • SQLite
  • Oracle
  • ZODB

In addition to its online support materials, Plone offers conferences and training sessions held around the world to help users and developers of Plone.

What are the pros and cons of Plone?

Plone has a good security record and works to comply with standards making it accessible for people with disabilities. It displays correctly in most common browsers and runs on most operating systems, including Linux, Windows, Mac OSX, FreeBSD, and Solaris. Plone allows a variety of convenient editing features, such as inline editing, drag and drop editing, and cut/copy/paste editing. It also offers numerous collaboration and workflow tools, including working copies and versioning. It allows you to use your web browser to manage files, even on a complex web site.

The main drawback to Plone is that it is built on less common technologies. This means it is more difficult and expensive to find a web host that supports Plone, and you or your web site developers may need to learn different technologies to use Plone to its full capabilities.

How do I get started with Plone CMS Hosting?

The first thing you will need to do to use Plone is find a web host that can support Plone software. This is somewhat more difficult than finding a web host for most open source content management systems because of the technologies Plone is built on.

Large companies that have a virtual or dedicated server and knowledgeable developers may not have any more difficulty with Plone than any other CMS. Smaller organizations using Plone should check out Plone's web site, which provides a list of web hosts that support Plone in 50 countries, as well as more help for finding a place to host Plone and getting started with the software.

If you are looking for a web host for Plone, you will have to look for someone who offers more than the standard LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP/Perl) setup. According to Plone, your web host must also allow you to:

  • Be a root user
  • Install any software you want 
  • Configure arbitrary incoming ports
  • Use Python
  • Use long-running system processes using 80MB of RAM or more

Once you have a suitable web host for Plone, Plone's web site offers support to help you download and install Plone and get started using it. We recommend HostMonster for Plone CMS hosting.

Visit Plone's web site at plone.org

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