Guy Verville Posted November 26, 2018 Share Posted November 26, 2018 (edited) https://www.spiria.com After several sites made with ProcessWire, Spiria decided it was time to get rid of its cumbersome Drupal site. To be honest, ProcessWire is still difficult to sell to customers, because this CMS/CMF is not as well known as the most popular ones. The migration to ProcessWire therefore served several purposes: Eliminate the frustrations experienced with Drupal (especially with image management and some structural problems). Allow integrators to learn the CMS during quiet periods, when they are not needed on other projects. Promote the CMS by adopting it. The challenges were many, but by no means insolvent, thanks to the great versatility of this programming framework. Indeed, if ProcessWire can be considered as a CMS in its own right, it also offers all the advantages of a CMF (Content Management Framework). Unlike other solutions, the programmer is not forced to follow the proposed model and can integrate his ways of doing things. The blog The site includes a very active blog where visuals abound. It was essential to cache the various dynamic components. For example, in all sections of the blog, there is a list of recent articles, a list of "short technical news", another list from the same author, a classification by category. In short, these lists evolve independently. ProcessWire's cache system, including its ability to classify by namespace, has significantly improved loading speed. Cache file management has been placed in a "saved" hook in the useful "ready.php" file. Data migration Importing the blog data was complex because at the time the site was designed in Drupal, programmers had not been used the easily translatable "entities", so each article resided in two different "nodes" (pages). We would have liked to use the core ProcessWire import module, but it does not yet take into account multilingual fields. However, we have used this code as a basis for building our own import module. This is one of ProcessWire's great qualities, as a CMF, it is easy to use existing code to design your own solutions. Reproduce the layout The current layout of the site has been reproduced exactly as it serves the company's needs very well. ProcessWire has simplified the work in many ways. Apart from the blog, which is very structured, the other sections of the site are more free, especially the case study section ("Our Work"). The use of page reference fields has particularly helped developers. As everything is a page in ProcessWire, you can create a pseudo relational database within the site itself. The administrator user becomes more aware of the data hierarchy and has better control over the data. Programming architecture The separation between controllers and Twig visualization files facilitates the management of the multiple components of the site. We haven't really explored the "regions" of ProcessWire, because we prefer not to mix these aspects of programming. This greatly facilitates the timely arrival of programmers in our department, used to an MVC structure, because they have a better understanding of what does what. The Search Once again, we were able to simplify what had been done in Drupal. There are two types of searches on the site, the blog search and the more general search on page 404 ( https://www.spiria.com/potato). The Drupal site search was driven by an Apache Solr server in Drupal. We decided to rely on the ease of ProcessWire and the Typeahead library (for the blog), because we didn't need the power of Solr (or Elasticsearch) anyway. Work to improve performance still needs to be done in this area. We would have liked to have seen the excellent search tool offered on the administrative side available on the frontend. We have not yet had time to explore the possibility of harnessing this code from the core of ProcessWire. Our wish here is that the CMS designer, Ryan Cramer, sees this as an opportunity to offer an exciting new feature to his CMS! Powerful modules We have the excellent modules ProCache (static caching), ProFields (fields that greatly improve the functionality of existing fields) and ListerPro (data search and processing tool). As the site is installed on a nginx server, we have ruled out ProCache for the moment and we are satisfied with the use of the cache() function alone. The ProFields fields are a blessing just like ListerPro. This last module is very useful to correct, for example, import errors (we had more than 800 blog articles, some of which date back to 2013). We used a functional field to gather translations of terms that would normally have remained hard coded and difficult to access in the translation interface (an aspect to be improved in ProcessWire, in our opinion). By grouping translations in a single page, site administrators can easily change or correct terms. Language management What remains a very small irritant for us is the management of languages, which is fantastic in many ways. The fact that there is a default language is both a blessing and a problem. For example, in 2013, blog articles were not systematically translated. We experienced the same situation with a customer's site. If the article is only in English, no problem, we only have to not check French as an active language. However, if the article is only in French, we are still required to create the page in English and make tricks in the code, thanks in particular to a checkbox such as "Not present in English" to reproduce the behaviour naturally present for English (or any language deemed by default). Perhaps there is a more elegant solution here that we have not yet discovered. It's not much, but some clients don't see why there are two ways to do it here. In conclusion In any case, ProcessWire's great qualities continue to appeal to programmers, integrators, graphic designers, users and even our UI/UX expert. The solidity of the CMS/CMF, its functionalities all translated into objects/variables ($pages, $page, $config, $sanitizer, $input... the list is long) allows us to systematize our workflow, easily recover code and reduce production costs. Although it is dangerous to offer only a CMS solution to our customers (hammer syndrome that only sees nails), it is tempting to consider ProcessWire as the Swiss Army knife par excellence of Web programming. As mentioned above, the CMF is suitable for all situations, has very good security tools and its designer has successfully improved PHP methods to make programming very pleasant and intuitive. For us, migrating the company's website to this platform was the best tribute we could pay to its designer, @ryan. Edited November 26, 2018 by Guy Verville Adding images 25 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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