Why should I be using Drupal?

With the many business, government and public sector organisations using Drupal, it's becoming clear that price is not the only advantage the CMS holds. Let me set out a few more for you here.

 

With the many business, government and public sector organisations using Drupal, it's becoming clear that price is not the only advantage the CMS holds. Let me set out a few more for you here.

 

  • Security

The nature of Drupal’s framework is an example of "Linus' Law," named for Linus Torvalds, the creator of Linux. According to that maxim, "Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow." What that means is that the more people who can see and test a set of code, the more likely any flaws will be caught and fixed. It's the polar opposite of the "security through obscurity", an argument often used to justify the use of expensive proprietary products.

Those products are closed from public view, so no one outside the companies that own them has the faintest clue how many bugs they contain. And there's no way the limited set of developers can test their products as well as the worldwide community scrutinising Drupal can.

  • Quality

Which is more likely to be better: software created by a handful of developers, or a software package created by thousands of developers?

There are countless developers and users working to improve the security of Drupal. With many more innovating new features and enhancements. In general, Drupal gets closest to what users want because those users can have a hand in making it. uAfter all users and developers make what they want, and they make it well. In fact, that technical superiority is the main reason enterprises choose open source software like Drupal.

  • Customisability

Along similar lines, business users can take Drupal and tweak it to suit their needs. Since the code is open, it's simply a matter of modifying it to add the functionality they want.

  • Freedom

When businesses turn to Drupal, they free themselves from the lock-in that can afflict users of proprietary packages. Customers of the big brands are at the mercy of that company's vision. If the big brand changes their requirements, prices, priorities or timetable, it limits what their customers can do with the products they're paying for.

With Drupal, on the other hand, users are in control to make their own decisions and to do what they want with the software. They also have a worldwide community of developers and users at their disposal for help with that.

  • Open Standards

Successful Drupal products adhere to open standards better than proprietary software. If you value interoperability with other web based services and users, and don't want to be limited by proprietary data formats, open source software is definitely the way to go.

  • Auditability

With closed source software, you have nothing but the vendor's claims telling you that they're keeping the software secure and adhering to standards, for example. It's basically a leap of faith. The visibility of the code behind open source software, however, means you can see for yourself and be confident.

  • Support Options

Drupal is free, and so is a world of support through the vibrant community surrounding it. Most every distribution, for instance, has an online community with excellent documentation, forums, blogs etc. for support.

For businesses that want extra assurance, there are paid support options for Drupal. These Drupal specialists tend to be more responsive too, since support is where their revenue is focused.

  • Cost

Between the purchase price of the software itself, the cost of mandatory virus protection, support charges, ongoing upgrade expenses and the costs associated with being locked in, proprietary software takes more out of your business than you probably even realise. And for what? You can get better quality from Drupal at a fraction of the price.

  • Try Before You Buy

If you're considering using Drupal or other open source software, it will typically cost you nothing to try first. This is partly due to Drupal.org and a myriad of hosting companies that offer Drupal as a free option on their servers. No commitment required until you're sure.

None of this means, that your business should necessarily use Drupal - But with all the many benefits it holds, you'd be remiss not to consider it seriously.

Note: Here are a few of Drupal's users