Graffiti CMS IS Faster than WordPress

Matt, founder of WordPress wrote a quick post about how Telligents upcoming .Net blog platform Graffiti dissed WordPress by saying:

WordPress is known for having an install that takes 5 minutes or less. Graffiti’s install takes less than 2 minutes. Why? We don’t expect you to setup or configure a database.

Sorry Matt but Graffitti CMS does install faster than WordPress! Just over 1 minute for me! No DB configs or users to setup all you need is FTP. Diss or no Diss Graffiti CMS even though in Beta has all the right stuff to be a WordPress contender and keep MS people from jumping over to the PHP side. No need to start converting just yet but I will be keeping on eye on Graffiti.

Graffiti supports Themes and Plugins just like WordPress and most important of all it looks like they got permalinks working on IIS without having to have a .aspx extension on every page FINALLY!

Here is a quick tour of some of the backend starting with the dashboard which kind of has a close resemblance to the sneak peak of the WordPress 2.4 Dashboard. It does have some cool Flash stats giving a nice visual to your post and site activity.
Graffiti CMS Dashboard

Writing a post is similar except you get two tabs with extra features for your post instead of the right sub nav tools.
Graffiti CMS Post

Settings tab with tag support and more…
Graffiti CMS Post Settings

Options tab for writing was cool as it provided a spot to write your own Meta Descriptions and Keywords.
Graffiti CMS Post Options

So here is quick note for the developers over at Graffiti CMS. Give the option to disable the Javascript prompts when leaving the writing section to another section. DONT PROMPT ME EVERY TIME! Here is a shot of the annoying prompt you get instead of an auto-save or anything else for that matter.

Themes are supported along with an editor.

The Theme Editor comes with a cool custom CSS that will allow you to overide the existing theme CSS without hacking up the original.

Drag and Drop Widgets and Header Navigation is built in. Here is a couple of screen shots of the Widget screen and other Site Options.


Overall for it being a Beta version I thought it was pretty solid. WordPress killer? Probably not but it has the potential of being a great .Net counterpart.

Unlike Matt’s claim that it costs $199 Graffiti CMS is available for FREE. Anyone else download and try this yet?

Time to start writing some sample Plugins for this!


drmike |

You get used to it. Anything out of Matt’s mouth you have to take with a grain of salt.

Cesar Serna |

Always do… Good to see a promising .Net blogging platform… Lets see where its at in a few more months…

Sfacets |

Nope, sorry, will not turn to Micro$oft just yet.

Cesar Serna |

Yea… After some more messing around with Graffiti CMS I dont see myself moving from WordPress in the near future either…

Willem |

Who the hell cares that the install takes under 1 minute instead of 5? Besides, Graffiti Beta is for free, but for as far as I can see you will have to pay for the final.

Brian B |

I don’t see this as a reason for converting from WP to Graffiti or even it competing with WP. After all, it would be stupid to dump a stable and proven platform for a beta product. Rather, it gives .Net developers an option for a decent blogging package that is SEO friendly. The .Net tools out there now are a major installation headache, take forever to learn, and are not the best for SEO. But since there isn’t much choice then you are screwed. Having a new tool on the market for .Net developers is really needed.

Richard Catto |

If the software is not open source, my interest is very low.

Also, I refuse to host on Windows. I consider it to be a vastly inferior platform to LAMP.

Creating a mySQL database and user via the new cpanel wizard is quick and easy.

Install time is a fraction of the time spent administering a blog.

Graffiti’s marketing is going down a dead end alleyway. They’re comparing themselves to WordPress and trying to tell WordPress users that they’re better.

That’s never gonna work.

Graffiti’s marketing should be targeting people who like hosting on a Microsoft platform.

Cliff |

I find it interesting that people are obsessing over a few minuets spent at install time. Especially since the only thing that seems to save time is the lack of database. Does this mean Graffiti uses flat files rather than a relational database to store its content? If so, I think this is a glaring problem with its design.

Personally, I would be happy to spend several days installing and configuring a good piece of software that will serve me well for years to come than invest a single second in something proprietary that I will most likely have to abandon and migrate my data away from.

So it supports themes and URL rewrites. So does nearly every CMS out there. The question is: how many people will develop themes and plugins for it? Since this is not open source software, the answer is likely to be very very few. Need proof? Just look to Expression Engine. It’s a nice software solution, but has enjoyed very little in way of community contributions, meaning it will never be as rich and flexible as WordPress.

Cesar Serna |

Dont we always pay in the end when using .Net?

Cesar Serna |

That is what caught my eye about this product… small (er) install package and ease of install… No need to mess with web config files or setup db backends…

Overall I have tested a few .Net blog packages and this to me seems to be the better more complete choice for those who are looking for a quick download and install on a .Net platform.

BillH |

drmike – In Matt’s defense, Rob admitted that the $199 was a typo which has since been corrected and the page you were directed to said nothing about being free for personal use.

My question is this: why would I want to leave something that is open source, stable, feature-rich, easily extensible, easy to use and community driven? If I want to change blogging/CMS platforms, I’ll go to b2 Evolution or Drupal or Nucleus or Serendipity or Geeklog or Joomla or Mambo or PHP-Nuke or PivotLog. I’ve used all of these is at least a testing environment. All are open source and community driven, just like WordPress.

Plus, if I’m a developer, why not use a language like PHP that is pretty much universal on the web? Why would I learn a proprietary language like Chalk in order to extend a proprietary product? Especially with all the alternatives that I’ve mentioned that all use the same language?

Cesar Serna |

Graffiti uses Microsoft Access Database with the initial install which is a slight step above a text file and is the trick to there installation speed…

Graffiti CMS says it also supports “Microsoft SQL Server 2000, Microsoft SQL Server 2005, Microsoft SQL Server Express, VistaDB version 3.2, MySQL 5.0″

As far as product support I just dont see that happening to often at all in the .Net world… The rally behind a product in the .Net realm is almost non-existent. There are a couple of open source blogging platforms in .Net and although they do have support they just have not caught on. SubText is a perfect example. I have been watching this project for a while now and development/release cycles are super slow despite it being an open source project on SourceForge. PHP and .Net communities are like apples and oranges…

Cesar Serna |

That was the very first thought I had when I saw it using Chalk… I thought “Here is yet one more language/syntax”…

Brian B |

I think some people are missing the boat because this is a WP/PHP oriented blog. Things are different in the .NET world (and this is a BIG world with a lot of money to spend).

I don’t think anyone using WP is going to say, “Hey – let’s buy Graffiti so we can host on Windows and learn .NET for a tool that is still in beta”. That would be ridiculous. However, there are tons of corporate developers out there who only code in .Net (myself included) who have no interest in learning another yet language (PHP) or hosting on a Linux platform. I already have websites in .NET on Windows servers. Why would I want to dump all my hard work just to use WP? Oh yeah – all my sites are already indexed in Google with the .aspx extension. I’m not going to lose all that link love by converting over to WP. So all these corporate guys are looking for a tool that they can use on their existing .Net sites that is better than the other crap out there. Yes, WP is much more stable and robust than anything available for .Net right now. But switching to Linux is never going to happen at this point. So we need something that let’s us live in the Windows world and still be a good, SEO friendly blogging platform. Whether Graffiti is that tool or not remains to be seen. But we definitely need something.

Re Graffiti comparing themselves to WP, I think this is done more from a marketing standpoint than an evangelical standpoint. It’s to tell the .Net guys, “Hey – everyone uses WP except for you b/c it sucks on Windows and you have to learn PHP to use it. So here is something just as good as WP and it’s built in .Net which we all love.” The sales pitch is to sell .Net guys on buying it. Not to convince WP guys to convert over.

Oh yeah – for people who worry about the price tag. Companies don’t work the same as guys who sit at home building websites hoping to make a few dollars off AdSense. If I tell my client that for $200 I can give him a stable blogging tool for his corporate site that doesn’t require me spending the next month building it myself, then the check gets written. $200 is nothing in the corporate world. Hell, I recently bought a .Net component just for the grid. It cost $700 and nobody blinked an eye. Corporations spends thousands of dollars for the IT Budget – that’s why they went with Windows/.NET in the first place.

If you’re building 50 blogs a day in hopes of making your first dollar on AdSense, then you are going to be crying over $200. But if you’re a real company with a real website, then this is nothing.

BillH |

BrianB – while I agree with you it’s a “big world with a lot of money to spend” the Open Source community is much larger. Please read “Bazaar vs. Cathedral” to fully grasp this concept.

I work in tech support for a $3 billion company and there is one simple reason that corporations went the Microsoft way. It all started back with IBM’s decision to go with MS-DOS over DR-DOS and Microsoft not selling IBM the OS but licensing it for them to use. Since then, Microsoft has held OEMs hostage to their latest/greatest OS – you STILL can’t buy a no-OS system from an OEM, and that dates back to the MS-DOS coup.

As far as what we support – because we are a Microsoft shop, we use their tools. We don’t develop in Java or PHP because Microsoft throws in the DotNET development tools as a part of our licensing agreement with them for their Server OS, Workstation OS and applications. Management’s point of view is “we paid for it so we better use it”. So we DON’T use it because it’s better, we use it because it’s included in the licensing price. And while you can say that I am not a coder (I do my fair share of scripting for SMS) I see little difference in the result of the code.

Yes, companies don’t worry about the price tag as much as individuals do. Maybe they should. The computing horsepower necessary to run Windows Server/IIS/DotNET is ridiculous. You can run a LAMP server just as capable on half the horsepower. The computing horsepower necessary to load the Visual Studio for DotNET development tools is ridiculous. You quickly can develop PHP web apps on a computer that has half the horsepower.

Also your point about “the .NET which we all love” is kind of funny as nowhere on the site does it say that Graffiti is open source – you won’t be working with the DotNET code! You’ll have to learn a new templating language called “Chalk” to do any development, and isn’t that what you want to avoid? Learning a new language?

I don’t build 50 blogs a day and I don’t use AdSense (in fact, my blog has no ads on it at all) but I still “cry over $200″. I wish my company and my government did as well – it would mean a bigger profit sharing check and lower taxes for me.

Jess |

I love that most of the comments focus on the evil Microsoft empire and how Windows is inferior to Linux and I’m certainly not going to jump into either of those debates as they never get old. But I just want to point out that Zend and Microsoft have been partnering to improve the performance of PHP on Windows with hopes of it being atleast on par with Linux. I also find it interesting the ever increasing number of people running PHP on Windows, be it apache or iis and the number of previously Linux only based applications being developed for windows too (like cpanel). Personally, I’m more concerned with the fate of MySQL now that Sun is at the helm.

As for Graffiti, I don’t think they are targetting WP (and yea that would be a hard nut to crack) but they are hoping to use the lessons learned from watching WP grow and build a commercial product in a similar way. Graffiti isn’t marketed as a blogging engine but as a CMS. With that in mind, I also think we should start seeing wordpress marketed as a CMS and not just a blogging engine and I’d love some versioning and workflow in wordpress (something graffiti promises).

Anyway, I’m getting long winded and going nowhere, if you haven’t checked out graffiti since it’s release I recommend you do, it’s changed alot. As for a blogging platform, I’m still a wordpress (on windows) fanatic.

Liane Blanco |

What Richard said! There’s no comparison between the two – I’ve never hosted on Windows and never will.


P.S. there are people who like hosting on Windows? ;)

Tareq |

Graffiti is horrible. Use DotNetNuke it is much better, user friendly and free. Don’t waste your money with Graffiti. I was trying to get support for help with installing a them called Traiing. I wasted 10s of hours and my money but was not able to customize or install the theme. If you need lightweight blog use . It is free and much better. Learn from my mistake and save your money. Do not use Graffiti and waste your money or time. It is horrible. Support is non-existent.

Adam |

Soo… 2 years later and seems nobody has been contributing to Graffiti, open source or not. I’m a .NET coder looking for a .NET CMS, and I must say it’s frankly embarrassing that GraffitiCMS is out there calling itself a “CMS”. It’s nothing of the sort. What kind of CMS doesn’t allow you to create an actual web page?

As for developer contributions, there have been none. There are a few themes, which basically look the same with different graphics, and a single .. one.. plugin. That was written by the same guys.

Graffiti should have died a semi-respectable death ages ago, now it’s just something PHP devs can point to as a reason to stay away from .NET. I’ll certainly hand it to PHP devs, they seem to have more idea of how to write something people *want* to use, and is genuinely useful, than .NET devs do.

frank |

Not so sure about this…