Drupal or Wordpress?

I would like to transfer my existing static HTML site to a CMS for easier maintenance, but I’m unable to decide on which platform to use – Drupal or Wordpress, not being confident with php I would be relying on modules/plugins to do much of the “heavy lifting”. At the moment my sight consists of approximately 200 pages, a contact form and a picture gallery. To this I wish to add a blog like news page, a forum and a social bookmarking facility.

At the moment I’m leaning towards Wordpress because I have previously managed to get a functioning installation with my current host, and I’m confident that I could do this again – as a security measure they require the –f bit to be set when sending emails from the website, something I got around by using the “configure SMTP” plugin. I believe that something similar exists for Drupal so this may not be an issue. One concern I do have with Wordpress is that when people discuss using it as a content management system it is always in relation to small sights, and as my sight is already at 200 pages this could become an issue.

Having had no experience with Drupal other than installing Drupal 7 on XAMPP, I have concerns as to the level of spam protection that is available, and to how easy it is to administer.

Whichever platform I finally settle for I will need to create my own theme, so the ease with which this can be done is something that I also need to take into consideration.

Any advice as to which is the more suitable system to use would be much appreciated.

Well your site really isn’t very big so either platform should easily be able to manage it for you and scale to many times its size.

I think it comes down to your plans for the future and the capabilities that you desire (number of blogs, forums, news sections, multi-language, galleries, events calendars, etc). If you think you’re going to be add on advanced features and need the flexibility to create several types of content that need to be handled specifically, then I would suggest Drupal for its flexibility but on the other hand, if you know that WP will provide all you need then it might be a better choice.

In my opinion WP is a simpler system to get going out of the box than Drupal but the effort involved in getting Drupal up and running are worth it if you need the advanced features and flexibility.

Most shared hosts provide Fantastico to install WP, Drupal, Joomla, etc… I would use that to try out each system and then make a decision. You may have to use Drupal 6 because I’m not sure how up to date they are with version but that’s ok, it’s mature and has more modules available.

Thanks Andrew, after careful consideration of your reply I think I’ll go with WordPress as I feel slightly more confident using that platform and it should provide all the functionality that I need.

Good luck with that McBob. Post us a link once your done.

Wordpress would be your best bet for not being a coder however Mollom for Drupal beats Akismet for Wordpress when it comes to spam any day.

I have got exactly the same dillema with my website (which is currently static HTML). I had to make a choice between Joomla, Wordpress and Drupal. After careful consideration I chose Drupal, as it is the most advanced of the three and offers better capabilities in the future, if you want to grow your site.

I agree it’s much harder to learn, but when you get the hang of it, it turns out to be quite OK.