What are important advantages and disadvantages of Symphony CMS when compared to Ruby on Rails?

Basically, Symphony is designed to build websites and Rails to build web applications.

Advantages of Symphony CMS over Rails

  • Deployment : Symphony CMS use PHP/mySQL so it is pretty cheap and easy to find a good hosting solution
  • User Interface : The admin dashboard is very clean and straightforward, plus it allows you to make some modifications to the website online.
  • Data sources : As Symphony is based on Xslt, virtually any XML feed can be parsed very easily into the website. I use this to integrate my Tumblr and other blogs directly into my main layout
  • Community : People working on Symphony are very active so the forum is a very good place to ask questions and be answered quickly

Advantages of Rails over Symphony :

  • Controllers : As you build everything from scratch, you have better control on the methods to be used with your classes, so you can add any specific behavior you like during database IO.
  • Gem : Rails has been used for any kind of projects from the smallest to the biggest, so you have a lot of libraries that you can use directly
  • Internationalization : For the same reason, the multi-language on Rails is very easy. I run across some problems with Symphony in adding multiple languages, but it was one year ago so it should be fixed now.
  • Documentation : You will find tons of blogs, screencasts, online courses about Rails.
  • Unit testing : No unit testing for Symphony so far

Another thing about Symphony is that you may have to learn XSLT - and use PHP. The framework outputs very clean and efficient code, but it is way less convenient to write than Rails.

This text was originally published in quora.

A question? A comment?

Please send it to me by email bonjour@clementrenaud.com or on Twitter.