Why I chose Grav CMS


In starting this blog, I installed and tested various Blogging and Content Management Systems (CMS), finally settling on Grav. Here's why I like Grav.

Grav is still in beta, but already it's so impressive!

  1. Can be self-hosted requiring only PHP 5.4! Great for those opting for a simple hosting provider and can't/don't want to bother with:
    • Installing, maintaining and backing up a database,
    • Installing software via shell, e.g. Node.js.
  2. Flat-file and high performance!
    • Simple file copy deployment and backup.
    • Lots of useful SEO and related settings (ETags, Meta, etc.)
    • Serves optimized pages - including advanced caching, pipelining (combines .CSS and .JS files), built-in minification, and thumbnails.
  3. So many beautiful templates! Get them as themes or pre-built "ready-to-use" skeletons, which include Grav core, sample pages and plug-ins - minimum effort to get going!
  4. Did I mention plug-ins? Useful plugins, not too many to make it difficult to choose, and not to few to be useless!
  5. An administration user interface!
  6. Last, but never, ever, least, open source! You can't beat the price of free!

Grav Admin Plugin Dashboard

In my short survey,

  • I was already familiar with WordPress and am biased against it since I think it's slow and hard to customize.
  • I did not consider paid software (Kirby, Movable Type.
  • I did not want to have to struggle to install software pre-requisites (Ghost requires Node.js, Jekyll requires Ruby, etc.)
  • I did not want an outdated project with no future (primarily judging by the last version date and frequency of updates) like Nucleus CMS or Chyrp.
  • I found some simply too hard for dumb ol' me, Textpattern included.
  • I looked at other solutions that was as new and as promising as Grav. I simply didn't know how to determine which was better/best, e.g. Bolt.cm, Anchor CMS, Habari and Pagekit