Home > ColdFusion, Web Application Development > From Contribute to a Custom CMS

From Contribute to a Custom CMS

I relaunched my parish’s web site 3 years ago using ColdFusion 6 and let staff maintain the site using Contribute.  This was no problem at the time as the site was small and had a fairly small audience.  Contribute was a quick and easy solution for the 2 parish staff to make updates to the site and it has worked well these 3 years.  I was still a novice programmer and had not come to realize the power of CFCs or even any of the many CF frameworks out there.

Current site

Current site

The time has come, however, for a serious site overhaul for a few reasons.

  1. The staff has grown tired of Contribute because it ties them to a single machine for updating the site.
  2. Site usage has increased tremendously
  3. The site has become cluttered with old, outdated content that in most cases is no longer needed
  4. Our host was not very reliable.

I first focused on open source blog and CMS software for our solution.  The CMS packages generally fit into two categories:

  1. Far too complicated
  2. Small feature set even for our fairly basic needs

After lots of trial and error, I decided to build my own custom CMS.  I use Fusebox 4 in my daily work, so this was a logical choice.  The front-end code can be organized and easily maintainable.  Content will be stored in a database, likely MySQL or SQL Server, and an administrative module will be used for content maintenance.  I’m going to use Flex 3 to build the admin module, which will allow staff to add, edit, and delete content from any machine with Internet access.

I’ll periodically update with my progress.

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