Okay, we ran into a snag – a rather significant one that is going to preclude me from proving my concept of using the blogging tool pMachine to manage a church web site’s content. You can read all about the bug in PHP 4.2.3 that is giving me gas – and putting me at odds with my host provider who can’t recompile without putting the servers at risk. They’re dealing with a CPanel bug of their own.
Around the time I ran into this brick wall, I received the following comment from Luke at Anglican Media Sydney who writes:
All the nuke/portal apps are pretty icky, except for drupal  which has some neat features. It’s not very customisable beyond the portal look though.
ez publish 2.2.x  is excellent (imo) for article management but there’s a moderate learning curve. It has a lot of intranet features too, plus is quite customisable (but requires a fair amount of work). Look out for v3, with a beta in a few weeks I guess, final a few weeks after that. ezp v3  should be *awesome* – but probably overkill for your needs. It archives things chronologically, but doesn’t do date based archiving (eg by month etc) ala blogging tools. Has neat article indexing and sitemap tools, and you can give each section its own look and feel etc.
People  also seem to like WebGUI . There’s also plone  to consider, but it seems too esoteric for a church web site, imo.
Otherwise, cmsinfo.org  is your friend!
But just use MT… you know you want to ;P
Kinda hard to argue with a guy who documents his comments! And he’s right about MT – yeah I suppose I do want to. In part because I know it … in part because I think Doug Walker REALLY got my attention when he said he implemented FrontPage because the church staff knows Word – and FrontPage works like Word – which means it works well for the non-geek speaking individuals who need to maintain portions of the site. So I got to thinking, hmmm … if I use MovableType, then I can probably get away with offering the staff w:bloggar … though I suppose I could actually implement Word if I had to.
Considering my host provider isn’t going to recompile PHP until a new version is released and stable, I’m compelled to use what works for me, MT. So I set up a mySql database, then I FTP the brand-spanking new version of MovableType, then water-bucket it over to my server (via FTP), then via an SSH session, I proceed to:
chmod 777 mtdata
# — create a directory that will contain external template files
chmod 777 templates
# — unzip/untar the distribution file, rename the directory
tar -zxvf $HOME/MT-2.5-full-lib.tar.gz
mv MT-2.5-full-lib mt
# — move stuff around into their appropriate directories
mv index.html index.php
mv docs images index.php styles.css $HOME/www
chmod 777 images index.php styles.css -R
mv $HOME/www/mt .
# — modify documents to taste
# — create locations for multi blogs which will be site sections
chmod 777 About_Us Events Directions Ministries Resources Sermons Youth
As you can see, towards the end, I was setting up my directories that will become individual blogs. Within each of those blogs will be individual articles that will make up the web pages. The exceptions to this being the Events, Youth and the Sermons blogs which will operate more like your conventional blog.
Do I need to mention that those of you trying this should have access to a copy, and should have read through at least once, the movabletype install documentation? Not only to figure out how to modify your configuration files (all that pico stuff), but also what to do once you’ve completed the above steps.