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With the increased interest in Blogging (web Logging), many web hosting providers now provide an assortment of free usage, open source blogging software packages. Among the most popular of these blogging tools are B2evolution, WordPress and Nucleus. Each of these programs offer similar basic features, so the question arises as to which one is easiest to use and would be appropriate for the requirements of your particular website.
The answer lies in the true purpose of your blog website. If your primary goal is to share your opinions and ideas with the general public, you would want to utilize a different blogging tool than a user who was creating product blogs as a commercial sales effort. A blog for search engine promotion would have entirely different requirements. All of these uses are viable reasons to create a blog, however each requires different features to be successful.
WordPress Blogging Software
Available for free download at: http://wordpress.org/
It is hard to beat WordPress for general personal blogging. WordPress is an open source, state-of-the-art personal publishing platform with a focus on presentation and usability. Everything related to creating and updating your blog is available through an intuitive graphical interface. With WordPress there is no need to compile your work. You simply write your column. You then select the features you want and your blog is instantly created and published to your website.
If you are on vacation, you can schedule your uploads for some date in the future or even email your column to the server! The system allows multiple users with multiple blogs divided into categories and sub-categories. This allows multiple family members or friends to create their own blogs along with yours.
Easy customization and the availability of many "plug-ins" that provide more functionality (add new features as you learn) makes this software a very good choice for most individuals.
Available for free download at: http://b2evolution.net/
B2evolution is another advanced web log tool that features an integrated XHTML validator. It supports recursive subcategories, cross posting and has a really cool integrated "skinning" system.
The "skinning" system allows you to create multiple blogs in separate categories with different appearances for each blog. You simply "change the skin" for the blog to create a totally new look and feel.
The "skinning" feature, combined with the built in multi-user administration management tool, makes the system robust enough for more commercial endeavors, such as product promotion blogs. If you have much to publish with multiple themes, this is the software you are looking for.
Nucleus Blogging Software
Available for free download at: http://nucleuscms.org/
Though Nucleus is an extremely robust blogging tool in its own right, it also contains some powerful features that can provide benefits in promotion of your blog.
Nucleus offers the ability to optimize its URLS, creating simple page addresses that do not have and "&" or "=" characters. This makes the pages search engine (and user) friendly. Another great feature is the ability to show the contents of multiple weblogs on one page. This could allow a website owner to manipulate the optimum text / keyword balance on pages for better search engine rankings.
Nucleus also provides RSS and Atom feeds that can be extremely helpful when promoting a website. If part of your blog's function is to work as a search engine marketing and promotion tool, Nucleus is an exceptional software package.
Each of these blogging software packages offer the basic tools that you would need to create a successful blog and all three are PHP - MySQL open source (free to use) packages. You should try to select the software that helps you achieve the long term goal that you have in mind for your website based on the unique extra features offered by each.
Don Beavers lives in Bryan/College Station, Texas and is an enterprise level PHP-MySQL programmer at both the Shopping Elf Shopping Guide and the Datavor Web Directory.
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