Forrester calls out Alfresco and Drupal as the top-two open-source WCM systems

Which are the two best open-source web content management systems? According to Forrester, Alfresco and Drupal win the war.

Forrester Research just released a great report detailing the open-source web content management market. In it, Forrester analyst Stephen Powers highlights a shift to open source for managing websites:

As organizations embark on next-generation Web content management (WCM) initiatives, they want to avoid the mistakes made in earlier, more costly WCM projects. As a result, information and knowledge management professionals increasingly show an interest in open source WCM as a way of controlling software costs and increasing their access to product-specific expertise in the marketplace.

That's great: Enterprises should move to open-source web content management offerings. But which ones?

Out of the wide pool of open-source web content management projects (There are, quite literally, hundreds), Forrester says there are two to which CIOs and CTOs need to pay particular attention:

Alfresco and Drupal (Acquia).

In answer to the question, "Why these two?" Forrester answers: Relevance. As Powers writes:

For an open source WCM vendor to be relevant, it must have a satisfactory product offering, proven enterprise-level implementations, and a large--and passionate--community of developers and service providers. Currently, enterprises interested in open source should keep an eye on two offerings--Alfresco Software and Drupal--because:

  • Both have taken pages from the commercial vendors' playbooks [i.e., enterprise-class support, stability, etc.]....
  • Technologists praise the product architectures....
  • Both have strong professional communities.

In sum, Alfresco and Drupal, backed by Acquia, offer enterprises a way to improve their web presence while saving a great deal of money in the process. What's not to love?

Of course, there's money to be saved in licensing costs, but it's how a company reallocates those costs that matters most. As Forrester points out, applying those saved licensing fees to a tailored implementation should translate into much higher levels of satisfaction. Today, most IT projects fail , but enterprises can mitigate the risk of failure upfront by trying an open-source project before they buy .

Disclosure : I work for Alfresco.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.


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