LightWeight Content System (LCS)

If you are a website creator, I am sure you faced this dilema more than once:

“Should I use an existing CMS or start from scratch and write my own small backoffice?”

CMS are getting better and better, and offers plenty of functionnalities. On the other hand, it means you’ll need to dive into their code deep enough to do the tuning you want. Very often, it will take you almost as much time as if you started from scratch. And since there will be many functionnalities you won’t use, the maintenance will be harder.

I have nothing against CMS, and actually, LCS was supposed to be one when I started this project. However, when I realised many websites didn’t need more than a structure editor, a style editor, and somewhere to edit/add content, I changed the orientation of the project : it became a generic backoffice rather than a CMS.

So how LCS is different than a Joomla, Drupal or even WordPress?

Standard CMS approach

  • – Install the system
  • – Check a test page
  • – Understand the templating system, and write the modifications you need / Write a custom theme
  • – Adapt an existing style to what you need

LCS

  • – Install the system
  • – Create an HTML/CSS/javascript template from scratch
  • – Replace the hard-coded text by LCS Calls

So unlike common CMS this approach does not need any knowledge of the system to start a website.

LCS Installation

The installation is pretty straightforward : decompress the archive on your computer, upload the files to your server, and call the /admin page. One setup page later, you should be done with the installation.

There is no database, every data is stored in the “content” folder. For security reason, you may want to more this folder out of the http rootdoc. It is possible directly from the setup page, or by changing the path in consts.inc.php.

5 thoughts on “LightWeight Content System (LCS)

  1. Sympa 🙂

    What I see is that a traditional CMS pretty much never asks you to code your pages, the whole admin panel has everything needed for it, including the style customization.

    With LCS, you get a library, an API, in order to code your pages. It’s a CMS for programmers.

    Well, that said, I just read the article and didn’t test LCS, so I don’t really know if LCS does also provide more classical ways to build your website without actually coding in php/html.

    Sinon ça va la vie ? 🙂

  2. Hi Droune

    I’m indeed behind LCS. However, I slightly disagree: it’s definitely easier for programmers, but the main idea is to let the user create his website with only little knowledge of the system. (the API help should be enough).

    I tried several CMS, and there are plenty of really cool features, but everytime I had to understand at least the theming system to be able to achieve what I wanted.

    With LCS, you start with your simple HTML/css model (maybe I’m the only one doing this, but I always start a new website project with a simple html page to see how it’ll look), then replace what you want to dynamize with LCS calls.

    Anyway, thanks for the feedbacks:-)

  3. I should give it a try, because:

    1 – I code my html pages with notepad directly in html/php with a css file
    2 – I don’t like Databases
    3 – I don’t want to install an enormous when I just want a few dynamic pages.

  4. This is precisely why I wrote LCS. Particularly for small to medium sites, I didn’t feel like installing a big CMS. And I guess most of programmers have the same approach (notepad + simple model).
    If ever you try it, don’t hesitate to post your feedbacks. LCS isn’t perfect, however I’d like to improve it, and another point of view won’t hurt.

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