updated in August 2020
My first CMS for JAMstack was Netlify CMS. I had been using it since 2018, and in 2019, I came across this amazing book: Modern Web Development on the JAMStack by Netlify.
A few pages in there, I found the list of content management systems that are git based and it mentioned Netlify CMS and Forestry.io.
Forestry.io sincerely took me by surprise: how come I’ve never tried this?
Anyway, let’s go slow.
What is JAMStack?
You can learn more about JAMStack in this amazing website that introduces you to all the concepts of JAMStack.
What I love about Netlify CMS
To be sincere, I like all my website source code and contents in one place; Github, BitBucket or Gitlab. I have read about Contentful and frowned because I don’t want to have my website parts scatered all over the place. Contentful is great if you like their idea.
- I chose Netlify CMS because it allows me to edit and add content directly to my git repository.
- Highly configurable via one file
- You can extend using react
- You can customize content preview using CSS
What has been the pain in Netlify CMS
I mainly post using my phone and then later do any edits from my computer. However, with Netlify CMS, it crashes every time I try deleting something on the editor. I dont know yet what this is all about. It always gives a weird error. I think it’s got something to do with Slate not supporting mobile very well yet.
To overcome this, I have been using Writer Plus for Android to draft the posts and then open Netlify CMS and paste the markdown text.
This is cumbersome a little. But for the price of free, Netlify CMS is amazing!
What I love about Forestry.io
I used this CMS for a very short period of time, loved it, but then went back to using Netlify CMS.
The Good Parts of Forestry CMS
- I don’t have to worry about the editor crashing.
- Also, the setup didn’t take me more than 5 minutes since I just imported the front matter from my existing documents and use the same folder I set up for Netlify CMS for the media.
- Very generous free tier
- I still run Netlify CMS at
/adminand the Forestry.io CMS from their website. Therefore, if things fall apart with Forestry, I simply go back to my old posting workflow.
I promised to update this post after sometime to share my experience. I have concluded that both are amazing products, and using them both in one project is easy to set up and works well. However, if I have to choose one, I prefer Netlify CMS.