Drupal vs. Mambo

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I've put up my first web site using Drupal. It's at
http://vancouver2010insider.ca/ (feedback welcome). I've been using Mambo
for a couple of years. I wanted to give Drupal a try because there's a lot
of local support for it here in Vancouver.

The biggest problem I've had so far is with putting pictures in articles.
Mambo has a very good mechanism for doing this. There's a module for
Drupal, img_assist, which attempts to do the same thing. It's buggy,
however, and I've given up on it for the time being. I'm just putting IMG
tags in the articles instead.

I also had to put some effort into putting up a page of links (it's called
"Resources" on this site). Mambo does this out of the box. With Drupal, I
first had to install a module called flexinode. flexinode gives you the
capability to create input forms for all sorts of things. I used it to
create a form for inputting the title, link, and description. To actually
display the links, I had to create a static page for it, and put some PHP
code in the page to pull the link info out of the database. Sounds like a
lot of trouble, but now that I've gotten my feet wet with putting PHP code
in Drupal pages, I'll be doing more of it.

The "contact us" page in Drupal is an installable module, called feedback. I
like the Mambo one better. The difference is that feedback only allows one
recipient. Mambo allows you to give the visitor a dropdown choice of
recipients; you can see this in action at
http://airspace.bc.ca//component/option,com_contact/task,view/contact_id,1/Itemid,48 /

Mambo gives site visitors the ability do convert articles to PDFs and
printer-friendly formats, and to email articles. Doing eack of these three
things required the installation of modules with Drupal, pdfview, print,
and send, respectively. pdfview required the installation of a
pre-requisite, html2fpdf. send also requires a pre-requisite, mimemail.

However, I like Drupal's send better. It actually formats the article and
sends it; Mambo just sends a link to the article.

I wasn't finished installing Drupal modules. I had to install the
taxonomy_block to provide the capability to group articles into categories.

One thing that Mambo doesn't do very well is provide for comments on
articles. I had to install a module, ako_comment, to do this, and this
module had bugs. Drupal handles this feature out of the box.

Drupal's RSS aggregator works a bit better than Mambo's. Mambo only supports
RSS 1.0, and Drupal supports at least 1.0 and 2.0. As far as creating RSS
feeds for your site, I got this with Drupal without even asking for it.
With Mambo, and had to alter the template to add the "application/rss+xml"
link to the HEAD area.

I regard Drupal as a work-in-progress, and it will be interesting to see
where it is six months from now.

Bob Broughton
http://broughton.ca /
Vancouver, BC, Canada
"I am talking about impeachment... If (George W. Bush) commits oral sex in
the Oval Office, and I don't care with whom, that will be the straw that
broke the camel's back. Out he goes." - Kurt Vonnegut, Oct. 7, 2005

Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

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looks good, Robert.

I used mambo a fair bit too - but I have now moved over to joomla (the fork
the old mambo developers took last year)

Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

Quoth Robert Broughton in alt.www.webmaster

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Interesting post, Robert.  Thanks for the review.

I have also been tried lots of different CMS packages.  I recently settled on
Mambo/Joomla because of their ease of use out of
the box.  I haven't tried Drupal.  Somehow that one never got picked up by my
radar.  I'll check it out.

Nice site, BTW

# www.mattlindi.com
# matt.lindi2@your_clothes_verizon.net
# remove _your_clothes_ to email me

Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

__/ [ Robert Broughton ] on Sunday 12 March 2006 20:07 \__

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Nice site!

For what it's worth, a serious bug (maybe vulnerability) was discovered in
mambo over the weekend. WordPress, by the way, can definitely be used as
CMS as well, so should remain a contender. I am not too sure about
TextPattern. PHP-Nuke is bloated and hard, but it gives a nice outcome and
plenty of widgets to play with (both admin- and user-side).

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In the latest of Drupal, there is a nice AJAX (iframe-based if I recall
correctly) animated progress bar, alongside the ability to upload files onto
the Web server directly. In WordPress 2.0.x you have a similar mechanism and
you can also drag-and-drop images. If you work with markup, you get the
accompanying code. If you are using the WYSIWYG mode, there appears a
picture as soon as you drop it onto the editing area. Very convenient.

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PHP-Nuke has a very powerful module that handles this 'out of the box'. Links
are managed in a database and there are many schemas and options.

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http://airspace.bc.ca//component/option,com_contact/task,view/contact_id,1/Itemid,48 /
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Yes, in Mambo it appears to be built-in. Other CMS packages need it to be
installed manually and it tends to be inconsistent and somewhat flaky, at
least in WordPress.

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Comments are slowly dying as too many site invite feedback and involvement
through comments. Maybe I am wrong to suggest that, but many others tend to

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Drupal is growing for all I can tell, but whether it will continue to grow, I
can't judge. It seems, however, like more people would prefer a CMS to
blogging software. I wonder why you don't use the successors of Mambo,
unless of course you are definitely ditching it.

Best wishes,


Roy S. Schestowitz      | Data lacking semantics is currency in an island
http://Schestowitz.com  |    SuSE Linux     |     PGP-Key: 0x74572E8E
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Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

On Sun, 12 Mar 2006 12:07:55 -0800, Robert Broughton

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Isn't everything either work-in-progress or abandonware?

I've been using and recommending both Drupal and MOS for some time
now, and consider them "better of breed". I don't say "best of breed"
because I know there's a lot out there that I'm unfamiliar with, but
of the ones I'm familiar with, they seem to be better.

I think of Drupal as being easier to set up than MOS, though.

Nice review. You mentioned a number of things I had never thought
about, and I didn't find anything I could argue with.


Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

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I never even noticed this problem since I have always uploaded the images
and then used the IMG tags without even thinking about a better way of doing
things. I guess it could be a bit difficult for non html savvy CMS drivers

Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

On Sun, 12 Mar 2006 12:07:55 -0800
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I have never been a big fan of either of these unless one has a site
with multiple contributors or editors. For example
http://fedoranews.org/cms/ which uses drupal. Many things are easier
done WITHOUT introducing CMS.

The you have issues like http://www.cauce.org/node/145 (campaign
against UCE); "Please pardon our new look! We recently upgraded the
CAUCE webserver to PHP 5.1.2, only to find out that Drupal's
"XTemplate" theme engine was not compatible with the new version of

On top of that, Mambo seems to be a victim of the exploit du jour
(usually php injection). I see at least 15 of these attempts every
day in the logs.

                    Displayed Email Address is a SPAM TRAP
           Eliminate Spam: http://www.TQMcube.com
          Multi-RBL Check: http://www.TQMcube.com/rblcheck.php
            Zombie Graphs: http://www.TQMcube.com/zombies.php

Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

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Pretty much anything that is addable in web server consoles (Plesk etc) at
the click of a button is going to be popular with the exploiters.

It means that there will be a steady and fresh supply of people installing
these applications on their domains who couldn't even handle the Wordpress
quick install, so are very easy targets.

Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

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I'm using Geeklog for part of my site.  Any opinions about the security
and history of the software?  The new version has a spamblocker plugin
...   It's got blacklist capability but so far I haven't seen any spam
(new, no comments).

Submissions can be made but are moderated for non-members.  It seems very
configurable and has all the features I like with more plugins available.  
I'm not promoting Geeklog ... just asking is anyone else has experience
with the software and any tips.  Meanwhile, I'll RTM.

http://www.technohippie.com /
"If you're going to split hairs, I'm gonna piss off!" ~ MP
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Re: Drupal vs. Mambo

I think this is a good comparison and highlights some of the issues
that Drupal faces.  There are plenty of CMS's out there that are more
user friendly out of the box.  However, Drupal has the best
architecture out there and is growing by leaps and bounds.

Pick a CMS as you would a stock - project for the future.  Ease of use
is much easier to fix than a flawed codebase.  Drupal will get there
eventually and then users will have the best of both worlds: power and
user friendliness.

Nice site BTW.

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