Adventures with Plone, Part I
This is the first in a series of articles about my "Adventures with Plone. The are written from a newbie perspective since that's what I am when it comes to Plone. Althoiugh I have a bit of experience with PHP-based CMS's, this is my first venture into the world of Plone, Zope and Python.
I'd heard about the Plone CMS before, but never paid much attention to it until I saw this post at
OpenSourceCommunity.org. After reading the post, I decided take a look at Plone and and learn a bit more about it. So I downloaded Plone 3.0 and installed it on my desktop PC....
Plone installs in a Win XP environment like most other applications...into the C:\Program Files directory. Once the installation is completed, you end up with a C:\Program Files\Plone 3\ directory structure that contains:
- \Data – configuration data, variables, logs, Plone and Zope functions
- \Python – the programming language bytecode generation and execution
- \XController – Win 32 utility for starting and stopping Plone
- \Zope – the application server, which includes the Zope Object Database (ZODB) manager and an http server
- LICENSE.txt – copyright and license information (it's GPLV2 or later)
- plone.ico – the standard Plone favicon
- postinstall.log – the installation log
- unins000.dat – for Win XP uninstall
- unins000.exe – for Win XP uninstall.
Once the install is completed, you start Plone by going to All Programs > Plone > Plone. This brings up the Plone Control Panel. The installer assigns ports 8085 and 8080 as the defaults for Plone and Zope respectively...which is a good thing if you are already running another web server such as Apache that uses the default http port (port 80). For production sites, Zope can be configured to use Apache as a proxy server so that port 80 can be used for both Plone and other applications you may have that use Apache. But for a test environment on a Win XP machine, it's much less complicated to use the default ports. for example:
- To access Plone, the URL would be
- To access applications using Apache, the URL would be
http://localhost/or some variation thereof.
The Control Panel is used to start and stop Plone, and to gain access to the Plone and Zope management functions.
Zope gets installed as a Win XP service, i.e., Zope runs in the background (like a Linux Daemon) waiting for Plone to request its services.
Disclaimer: Since I am a neophyte when it comes to Plone, please excuse any any errors in what I said above. The official Plone documentation is the authoritative source.