Which is a good .NET based CMS out there (for creating a corporate website). I have used Kentico CMS for some time, and am moderately happy with it.

However, is there anything better out there. I would like the ability to develop my own custom asp.net templates for various page types and install them.

+6  A: 

If you are code-savvy, and not afraid to pay up, I would recommend EPiServer

My company uses it for a lot of customers, and it's a very nice platform to build your site on.

Lars Mæhlum

@Lars - code-savvy is not a problem. I need the CMS for our own website, not as a customer offering.

I couldn't locate pricing on their site (it seems I will have to mail them). Any clues for in which range it is?

+1  A: 

I have used Boss a few times. It's aimed at designers more than developers, but it is an awesome CMS that handles most needs out of the box.


EPiServer should be in the range of about $10k-$15k. (In Norway at least)

So, it is not cheap, but you will save that money in developer time.

Lars Mæhlum
+1  A: 

Corporately we use a product called EasySite that is .NET based from EIBS.

The page design is element based and the API allows us to create .NET plugins as new elements; for use on the individual pages as well as the site style in general. We have created a plugin that works with our historic authentication module.

The company are very helpful in supporting plugin development and I believe have just opened offices in the US. They are UK based.

Cost wise I believe they are competitive although I didn't have any involvement with the tender process.

David A Gibson
+2  A: 

Update: Vaibhav, in some of your other posts, I saw you're using Telerik's controls. So for you another advantage would be.. yes, Sitefinity was made by Telerik :)

Did you check out Sitefinity? If you are a developer I think it is a very good choice. Community version (free), much cheaper than competition, extensive API and other goodies. It was built to be very extensible and basically even if you don't have something, you can easily build it yourself.

+1  A: 

I'm also in the process of evaluating .Net CMS and regarding Kentico vs Sitefinity, I found Kentico a much better product.

Erick Sasse
Why are you comparing KEntico against Sitefinity and not Sitecore?
+9  A: 

I'd highly recommend you take a look at DotNetNuke, an open-source .NET CMS.

I have used it for internal sites, and external sites for both small and large companies. You'll have thousands of pre-built modules and skins available, plus readily available documentation and support (plus several books specifically for DotNetNuke as well) for developing your own skins and modules.

Purple Ant
Can you actually use DNN for large corporate sites? Last time I tried it (v3) it felt restricted to skinnable portals only
Chris S
You can do so much more with DNN than just 'skinnable' portals. I've deployed several large scale sites using DNN v4 and written a number of modules for them. It's probably by far the best .NET CMS currently available.
DNN is based on Web Controls logic and theming. It is out of the box CMS not very good as an API. If you are looking for CMS with great API take a look Umbraco or get crazy and move to ASP.NET MVC. :)
But is the Community Edition enough?
Andreas Grech
@jpkeisala - I have to disagree that DNN doesn't have a good API. You can do quite a bit with the DNN framework to extend or change its functionality.
Purple Ant
-@Andreas The Community Edition is VERY functional, and is still more widely used than the Professional Edition. The professional edition has more bells and whistles, and comes with priority support, but don't count out the Community Edition.
Purple Ant
+1  A: 

I have used Immediacy extensively in the past. It is extremely simple for editors and quite customisable for developers, without some of the trickiness of set up and deployment you get with other offerings.

In fact if your requirements are simple you can have a site up, running and re-skinned in a matter of hours.

I've also found that editors are much less intimidated by the content entry and administration functions than say sitecore. Which in my experience is where most CMS implementation projects live or die.

It's downside is that it's not 100% customisable (particularly at the editing end of things).

Tim Saunders
+4  A: 

I've used DNN (dot net nuke) for a friends band website, and while its really customizable, i still find it way to programmatic for a non tech savy user to try and maintain, and this is talking about just using the basic features and functionality.

James Hall
+2  A: 

I've just started using N2. It is pretty simple to use. There aren't a lot of bells and whistles built in, but it easy to extend.

+3  A: 

DotNetNuke is good provoding that your willing to deal with an OpenSource CMS where everything seems commericalized. Want custom skins, themes and modules? Prepare to pay for them.

Also I was not impressed at all with the online documentation for it.

Matthew Ruston
Yeah that's what I found too. It seems to be a HUGE pain to get going with. I had to fill out a form just to download the install documentation!?!? I also found it hard to find the other pieces of documentation, and it wasn't well organized.

Take a look at the Ektron CMS. It's a full-featured CMS, with excellent out-of-the-box functionality and is quite easy to customize. I've released 2 sites so far, and am working on 5 more as I type. Pricing isn't too bad -- around $5K (I think) for a starter setup, up to around $65K for enterprise features (web farm, commerce, etc).

I couldn't disagree more with this post. I've worked with Ektron (various versions) over the past few years and it is an ugly ugly application. It's "out of the box" features may work ok, but if you intend to do any customizing or extending, good luck!!
Pricing gets very expensive, too - you get get into $50k+ in licensing.
I worked on a CMS project for over a year and we had a horrible time with it. It had a rediculous architecture to it, there were so many uneeded webservice calls that our sites completely bogged down. We actually wound up rewriting the core of the CMS system just to make it usable. Beware this product if performance/scalability is important to you, we also found several security holes.
Agile Noob
+8  A: 

The open source Umbraco CMS seems like it's worth a look. I haven't built anything on top of it yet, but it's my choice for a future website project after evaluating it.

It seems to be pretty well documented, including its API.

Not sure about well documented and its API (even in version 4) seems to ignore ORMs, but it's a decent CMS
Chris S
+9  A: 

Professionally, I "live" in the DotNetNuke world. I've found that it is very useful for a wide variety of projects, is very flexible and powerful.

It definitely has a few drawbacks, namely in the admin user experience, XHTML/CSS standards compliance and developer documentation areas. It's historically taken a lot of hands on experience to get familiar with the framework. Thankfully, those areas I mentioned are starting to get a lot more attention these days!

In my opinion, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks if you're looking for a mature portal framework. As with anything, it's a tool in the toolbox that should be used wisely, and the needs of each project are different!

Here is the list of CMS frameworks I know about. I hadn't seen anyone else mention MojoPortal - but it looks pretty cool as well!

Also of interest: take a look at the 2008 Open Source CMS Award Finalists list. MojoPortal won the best "other" CMS last year.

Ian Robinson
+2  A: 

+1 for Umbraco. There's a little bit of a learning curve if you're not comfortable with XSLT, but the end user experience is one of the cleanest and most usable I've seen in a CMS. They also built it keeping in mind that developers would want to add custom ASP.NET pages/controls so it's a fairly simple process to integrate those.

Michael Paladino
+18  A: 

I've just started looking at N2, and being open source, and using ASP.NET MVC with complete control of the HTML is a huge bonus. I've been using episerver 4 too, which is ghastly in comparison.

UPDATE 18 months later, and I've built a few sites with N2 now, and it has been really good. The projects have been successful, quick to implement, and fun to write with N2.

Can you elaborate on the ghastliness of episerver 4? Any experience of using the latest version (5?) in comparison?
Richard Ev
I've not used v5. The quantity of documentation converting 4 to 5 was enough to put me off
+1  A: 

I'll put another vote in here for DotNetNuke, with a little bit of work you can create whatever you need to meet your end goals. And the price is right!

If you need specific functions, the third party tool market via SnowCovered and other sources are also very nice for quick, cheap add-ons that you don't have to code yourself.

Mitchel Sellers
+10  A: 

I would use N2. I've used it for a couple of sites and it's really great.

Plus, I know the author personally and he's continuously making it better. :)



Take a look at Joomla CMS. It's a full-featured CMS that's open source BUT built in php. Now that .net platform supports fastCGI(php) it could maybe be a choice.

"Now that .net platform supports fastCGI(php) it could maybe be a choice." I guess you mean IIS server. For your information - IIS and .NET are different things.

MojoPortal gets my vote

+3  A: 

Relatively new, and still in alpha, but Oxite may be one to watch. Oxite is quite lightweight compared to larger frameworks like Nuke and Joomla, and is implemented in ASP.NET MVC with consideration for standards compliance, and separation of concerns. Architecturally it's designed around Linq-to-SQL and Unity(an MS dependency injection application block).

Bayard Randel
+2  A: 

Kentico cms gets my vote . Excellent features and after sales support.

+1  A: 

I suggest checking out Umbraco and Sitecore. Umbraco if you have low budget and very simple website but if you need to make integration (i.e. Sharepoint, ldap, etc...) then I recommend Sitecore.


I'd recommend both EpiServer and KenticoCMS having used them both.

-- Lee

Lee Englestone
+1  A: 

I think Webnodes CMS would be a good fit for you. It uses standard aspx pages for templates (no xslt skills are needed, which quite a few .Net content management systems require).

It has an advanced content type module that enables you to create an ontology that reflects the domain of the website in question(travel, finance etc). Based on the ontology it generates an object model and real classes, giving you a strongly typed object model to develop your site with.

There are no limitations on design, as the content and the presentation is completely seperate. This also makes it easy to present the same content in multiple channels(basically using different template to display the data), for example print, mobile and email.

Vidar Langberget

After working with MANY cms over a number of years, I would say go with Umbraco or Sitefinity, both are well suited to development and content management, after working with DNN for the past 6 months, I'd say steer clear of it..

+1  A: 

After developing custom websites professionally and looking around quite extensively for a CMS to help me accomplish my task more easily, I can vouch for N2 CMS as the most satisfying CMS out there, PARTICULARLY for developers using Microsoft ASP.NET, C#, or developing on the Windows platform.

I have developed websites with DotNetNuke, which is a reference in the ASP.NET world also. DotNetNuke can certainly do the job, but I just didn't enjoy working with it at all. I thought it's administrative UI was a mess my customers couldn't live with and I its programming design was something that I couldn't live with. So after a few months I continued my quest for "the ultimate CMS" for my own taste.

That's when I found N2. I think one thing that got my attention was N2's quality level, overall design and code practices, are all very high, state-of-the-art and professional! It's just perfect for professional developers, particularly those using Microsoft tools and technologies, but really is accessible to anyone. N2 had an extrensive list of features, like most other CMS, but N2 "delivered" what it promised, which was a good feeling...

Although N2's approach that lets you blend its CMS features around a pre-existing ASP.NET website is a real plus, it also lets you build a small website easily, out of the box and without programming skills. It's just the best of both world: easy to use, yet extensible without much limits in the hands of a software developer.

N2 is quite mature and stable, has a nice community to help you when you need it, and after a year or two using it, I still think it's the best for my needs :)


Sitecore .Net would be my suggestion if you want something big and enterprise-y to use for websites. It can be a bit bulky, though there are a number of specialists that use it and version 6.1 has been pretty good where I work for the past year but we did spend a year and a half to get a new site using it up and built.

JB King

I've been developing websites over Sitefinity for almost a year now and i can say it's a very good option for a .NET based CMS, but i don't see any big benefit that you gain if you also use Telerik Controls for your projects, they don't complement Sitefinity in any way. That's not a bad thing by the way, it just means that you can get the full benefit of using Sitefinity without using the Telerik Controls. I have to mention thou that i haven't had much experience with other cms's, the only one i used seriously was Sitefinity.