Forum OpenACS CMS: Website builder website

Posted by J123 C on

I'm hoping to set up a website to enable some friends of mine to administer their own content. They are not at all technical, but require very good looking websites, but not necessarily very functional sites, in a fairly set format (Portfolio style sites, mainly, they are hair stylists, makeup artists, jewelery designers etc - people who need to have a unique, good looking site, but don't have the money or technical ability).

They will need to create an account, select a layout, customise the layout (colours, background, etc), possibly design their own layout, then add new pages which will appear in the menu. They will need to be able to add a gallery, involving bulk uploading of images or video. Flash or Javascript-based would be ideal.

The important thing is that their sites within this site will be independant, appearing as completely separate sites, say under, which can then be maped to their own domain name.

There are other sites that do similar, such as, and Google Pages, but these sites have big limitations in terms of the layouts you can select, mainly, you end up with a very non-unique looking site.

Also would be handy if they could register domains via the site as well, but I can do that for them.

Is this something you can do with OpenACS?

Apologies if this has been posted already, I did search, but I may not be the best at searching. Thanks in advance if you can help.

Posted by Dave Bauer on
Possibly dotcommunity (a configuration of OpenACS)
can do what you want. It's designed to setup many small websites. You can use host-node mapping to map a URL to a particular community subsite.
Posted by J123 C on
Hi Dave,

Thanks, I played around with dotcommunity there, it looks very close to what I'm hoping to do, in structure.

I really like the way it presents standard pages that can be included, exactly the type of thing I'm hoping to do, makes it very easy to use in a standard way.

I wonder what OpenACS (or dotcommunity) is like for extending something like that to do the following:
1. use very glossy layouts (is Flash layouts possible?)
2. the user can choose from a selection of layouts
3. can plug in a more sophisticated gallery/other tools
that the user can drop in to their site

These would be nice to know before I jump in and find out its too hard after a few days of trying. Are these things I can easily plug in or develop myself? Because other than these three requirements, this does look very close to what I'm looking to set up. If I can extend this to include them, its perfect.

Thanks for answering, I appreciate the response.

Posted by Jim Hobson on
It will take a small learning curve but Wordpress is a very solid tool for the situation you described. When you advance into being able to code your own site you can integrate a solid open source CMS and tweak it to your needs.
Posted by cloth bottom on
Or you can use CMS to create website its free and easy setup. Thanks