mojo vs dnn and rainbow

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5/5/2006 8:52:07 AM
Total Posts 11

mojo vs dnn and rainbow

Hi Joe,

could you make a short analysis of mojo vs dnn and rainbow? What are main advantages of mojo (except Mono)?



5/7/2006 10:49:02 AM
Total Posts 18439

Re: mojo vs dnn and rainbow

Hi Ivan,

I will give my opinion but of course I cannot be considered unbiased and the fans of DotNetNuke, Community Server, and Rainbow Portal are likely to have different opinions than me. I will say that I am not all that familiar with the latest version of any of these. I have installed past versions of DNN and Community Server and I did run my own site on Rainbow Portal for several years and I also contributed msicellaneous bug fixes and the first blog module to Rainbow Portal back when I was using it. Later I migrated my data for from Rainbow into mojoPortal.

Community Server wasn't around when I first was looking into portals, it was at that time just forums code, it is more recent that they have combined the forums code with .Text blog and nGallery to form the basis of Community Server. I mention it because it is getting very popular and I think probably at the expense of DNN and Rainbow. Funny to me that even the Rainbow guys are using Community Server for their community site these days.

Anyway at the time Rainbow seemed the way to go for me because it was in C# and DNN is in VB.NET. Nothing wrong with VB.NET but I prefer C# and think it is cleaner.

Later as I became interested in mono I considered trying to get Rainbow working on mono and porting it to work with mysql but as I began studying what it would take to achieve this, it seemed rather daunting and I realized that I really didn't like the architecture of Rainbow very much. So I decided to start from scratch and have clean separation of web ui, business logic, and data access and still clone the original pluggable module features of IBuySpy as a starting point. Thats why I started the mojoPortal project.

Later on my friend Joseph Hill did manage to get a version of Rainbow running on mono using MS SQL of course. My recollection is that not all of it worked though and I'm not sure if his changes ever made it upstream.

Back to the question of what I see as the advantages in choosing mojoPortal over these other options, I think it comes down to 3 things, project goals, philosophy, and architecture.

Goals: mojoPortal is much more commited to being a cross platform solution both across operating systems and databases. I would say that we have a lead over these other projects in this department since none of them currently support non MS databases (unless they have done something recently that I haven't noticed) mojoPortal works with 4 different databases MS SQL, MySQL, PostgreSQL, and SQLite. Because mojoPortal supports SQLite, which is an embeddable database it may be possible to run mojoPortal on a mobile device. There is some work being done to get mojoPortal running on a Nokia Internet Tablet using mono. Currently the 2.x branch of mojoPortal does not run on mono but that is just a matter of time as mono matures. I'm not sure how long it will take but you can be sure I am committed to getting mojoPortal 2.x running on mono. Right now I am just focused on how best to take advantage of new 2.0 .NET features. Once things are working as I want them in 2.0 .NET I will focus more heavily on getting things working on mono. There are a few others also working on this and everyday more progress is made with the mono 2.0 stack. Even if you are happy running on Windows why not keep the option open so that later you could run your app on a different OS if you want to, in other words less vendor lock with mojoPortal is a good thing.

Philosophy: mojoPortal aspires to be a true open source project according the the definition by OSI.
Community Server I doubt will ever meet this definition. They include some free things that are not open source such as FreeTextBox and some Component Art stuff. Rainbow also includes some free dlls without source code, EasyListBox and FreeTextBox (though they also include the open source FCKeditor). DNN may qualify since it is BSD licensed, if this matters to you you should inspect what it includes and depends on. I realize many people are satisfied with free even if it isn't open source and thats fine just noting that it is important to the philosophy of mojoPortal.

Architecture: Well this is certainly a matter of opinion but I think it is a lot easier to work in mojoPortal than these other projects. The code is easy to understand, easily extentable and not over-engineered. I also think the skinning and localization in mojoPortal is much easier to understand. Code that is easier to understand is easier to maintain

So if you want the option of using open source databases mojoPortal wins. If you want to be able to run on windows or linux mojoPortal wins. If you look at the source code for these projects I think you will agree that mojoPortal is cleaner, more lightweight, and easier to understand.

Now DNN and Rainbow have more features than mojoPortal and you may also have to consider that in your decision. If you do decide not to use mojoPortal because of a missing feature, I would be interested to hear about what feature you need.  However there is some advantage mojoPortal has becuase it is not yet as feature rich, it will be easier to convert the features we do have to WebParts and I think we will get there much sooner than these other projects because we have less to convert. I don't know for sure that they are even planning to use WebParts but if not then that will be another advantage for mojoPortal. If you don't know what WebParts are have a look at, all the cool drag and drop stuff going on there is WebParts in action. In fact I already have Personalization and Membership working with all the data layers for mojoPortal. Personalization is the plumbing to remember user preferences when they drag and drop the WebParts where they want them. I just finshed getting that working so now I am actually beginning to convert mojoportal features to WebParts.

Another point to notice with Rainbow and DNN, they don't have built in forums (which is probably why Rainbow needs Community Server for their community). I know you can integrate YAF (Yet Another Forum) into Rainbow and DNN but the skinning and the search remains separate. In mojoPortal the search feature includes the forums.

And as far as I know those other projects have not yet achieved Xhtml compliance so that is another advantage of mojoPortal.

Well, there you have it, for what its worth my opinion of the advantages mojoPortal has over these other better known projects.


5/20/2006 4:42:40 PM
Total Posts 5
Ira Richard Smith

Re: mojo vs dnn and rainbow

I have used DNN, Rainbow, and now I am getting started with Mojo and when I saw this message thread I thought I would contribute from a users perspective who plans on programming/developing with the portal system I am using.

I'm a C# programmer and so Rainbow and Mojo have more of an appeal to me than DNN does.  Just a personal preference and of course I am glad for the opportunity to have the choice.  Yes, you can develop modules in C# for DNN and its recent starter kit even has a C# template, but it is not the same as the whole thing being in C#.  Even though I would not plan on mucking around with the core of the system, sometimes it does help to understand things if you can look at the code to figure out how something works.  So having the core in the language you natively work in is always a big plus.

Mojo has been ahead of the game as far as I know when it comes to how the software is available to the user.  By that I mean that the binaries are separate from the source, so if you wish to upload it to a hosted web space you are not uploading multitudes of files that you will not use.  Only recently did DNN begin to offer this type of separation.  Rainbow I believe plans to offer something of this nature in its upcoming 2.0 release.

I have not studied the underlying structure of any of the portals, but I would think Mojo would be more structured and orgaized because it has a much smoother install than the others do. 

It will be interesting to see how everyone incorporates and adopts the wonderful enhancements of .NET 2.0 into thier respective systems.  My own time is somewhat limited at the moment and I have not made very much progress in getting material on my Mojo based site, but I do plan to work with it as time allows and get familiar with Mojo further.



5/25/2006 9:00:42 AM
Total Posts 19

Re: mojo vs dnn and rainbow


I've also tried dnn and rainbow and now I'm using mojo to develop a portal for my company.

I think mojo is faster than dnn and rainbow. Dnn and rainbow have to much unused code for some particular use.

It would be better to use mojo to develop a dedicated portal.

And the menu skmmenu is greate



9/2/2006 1:44:13 PM
Total Posts 18439

Re: mojo vs dnn and rainbow

I just did some performance comparison between mojoPortal and DotNetNuke during load tests.
You can see the results in this forum post. I tried to make the tests comparable and I tried to get the best performance I could out of both mojoPortal and DNN. I found that mojoPortal was far superior in performance. I encourage you to try your own tests and see for yourself.
12/9/2006 2:32:19 PM
Total Posts 5

Re: mojo vs dnn and rainbow

I did a pretty exhaustive comparison between DNN, Rainbow and Mojo. I didn't consider Community Server, but I've become a bit of an open source nut lately. Joe used to be my boss and actually convinced me to try Rainbow Portal back when he was working with it.

DNN - VB.NET (shudder). I used to code in VB before Joe showed me the light of C#. DNN also flaked out and blew up on me quite a bit and didn't have the modules I want. On top of that, the code was too pattern-heavy for me. It would be a major headache to change anything.

Rainbow - Man, this thing was killer in the day. Lately though, it sort of reminds me of a fifty-year old former porn star who thinks she's still got it. Custom modules there were a bit of bear, plus it seems like the project just sort of died about a year before .NET 2.0. Also, changes to the skinning of the site could potentially break the entire site to the point that you just have to scrap it (some of the skins that shipped with Rainbow would completely break everything if you accidentally picked them).

Mojo - I've worked with Joe before. The man codes cleanly and this project is no exception. Setup was easy and pain-free. I intentionally broke things just to see what would happen. The error messages were meaningful and helped me quickly pinpoint the problem. I cannot say that for the two projects listed above (as they would have had me chasing my tail for days trying to figure things out). Finally, cross-platform is a big thing for me. After getting burned repeatedly by Microsoft earlier in the year, I intend to only be running Windows within a VM by the end of this year. Everything else will be Linux. By the end of next year, I plan to have gotten rid of the VMs. My side business (which I hope to turn into a full-time gig eventually) will be running Mojo for our site.

Just my two cents.
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