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XWiki vs Data Management Systems

XWiki is developed thinking of adaptability and flexibility, therefore supporting full customization and allowing developers to exactly meet the needs of any enterprise or individual. It allows starting with a simple knowledge base which can be further improved to undertake more complex projects. XWiki is a software made to adapt to its customers and not the opposite.
Logo XWiki Open Source
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Logo DMS

What is a Data Management Software?

Definition and features

A Data Management Software (DMS) refers to a computerized method of storing and managing information in electronic format within an organization. DMS mainly implement acquisition systems, indexing, classification, management, data access (navigation and search) and document consultation. Such data management eases collaborative work processes. The most well-known Data Management Software solutions are Sharepoint, Alfresco, KnowledgeTree, Nuxeo and, Exoplatform.

A DMS takes into account the full life cycle of a document, covering all four majors steps in the electronic management of documents: Acquisition, Classification, Storage and Distribution. It is not only a document repository, providing the necessary, additional features to undertake these steps, from document scanning, import/export, indexing and search to metadata, access rights, and backup features.

Use cases

A Data Management Software's use cases include Knowledge Base, Document Libraries, Documentation and Document storage in an electronic version. In addition to these, a DMS provides advantages by allowing its users to centralize, secure and control essential information (documents, plans, contracts, etc), whilst able to share and access it in real-time, from anywhere.

What is XWiki?

What is a wiki?

Presented as a set of web pages alterable by all users with permission, a wiki allows the collaborative creation of content (including text, images, videos), as well as links between different sets of information. Basic wiki features comprise of:

  • Page creation
  • Page modification: adding or suppressing content
  • Creation of links between information
  • Discussion: the creation of a page can generate a lot of exchanges between all the contributors
  • Modification history: What was modified? By whom? When?
  • Rollback: it is always possible to rollback and choose the previous version of the wiki page
  • Rights management: each registered user has rights which allow creating, modifying, consulting or deleting pages.

    XWiki, a second-generation wiki

    Wiki is an Open Source software, developed under the LGPL license, proposing a new approach to collaboration by acting as the bridge between people and encouraging organizational intelligence growth. It incorporates all the features expected from an Enterprise Wiki, from Office documents import, page linking, history and rollback to user and rights management, file attachments, macros and advanced search. To this are added the three supported editors (CKEditor, XWYSIWYG and wiki syntax), which further improve user experience in terms of extensively editing a wiki page. XWiki is developed thinking of adaptability and flexibility, therefore supporting full customization and allowing developers to exactly meet the needs of any enterprise or individual. It allows starting with a simple knowledge base which can be further improved to undertake more complex projects. XWiki is a software made to adapt to its customers and not the opposite. Additionally, the XWiki SAS company offers services and solutions, including development, consulting, hosting and support.

    Comparison between XWiki and Data Management Software

    Albeit similar features and use cases exist between the two solutions, some disparities still exist. In terms of approach, XWiki is focused on "collaboration on the document", while a Data Management Software concentrates on "document sharing". In a DMS, documents are files (retaining their original format), but in XWiki documents are wiki pages which can be exported in a variety of formats (PDF, DOC, etc.). Although both products bring enhance collaborative working methods in the business environment, XWiki establishes itself as a real Enterprise 2.0 solution, the document being an actual web page with a related URL.

    Tools strengths and weaknesses

    XWikiDMS
    Strengths
    • Information structuration
    • Import of both electronic and paper documents (XAMBOX)
    • Document sharing features
    • Collaboration focused around the document
    • Collaborative platform, extensible and scalable
    • Applications development platform
    • Information structuration
    • Import of both electronic and paper documents
    • Document sharing features
    • Information centralization
    Weaknesses
    • The wiki's need to be animated
    • Implies change in the work routines (vs emails and documents repositories)
    • No collaboration around the document
    • Evolution of the working methods but no Enterprise 2.0 revolution

    Why use XWiki rather than a Data Management System?

    XWiki's benefits on the DMS usages

    One of the main advantages of XWiki is that it offers a real Enterprise 2.0 solution, bringing innovative methods of organizing information and encouraging organizational intelligence growth. Because documents are wiki pages, it's not mandatory to have the appropriate software files on a computer or download them. Just through a browser it is possible to create, view, edit, comment or annotate a document. However, XWiki is more than a usual wiki. Over 750 Apps and Extensions have been made available. Its customization abilities are the core. From the appearance of the wiki to the creation of applications meant to solve specific, unique problems, XWiki makes it possible to meet a company’s IT needs, be it Intranet, Extranet or even a Website. Fostering innovation and transparency through the freedom it offers for development, XWiki aims to create solutions which empower people by offering the means to foster and boost collaborative cultures within companies. With over 15 years of experience and over 500 projects, it is fit to become a real collaborative solution for enterprises of any size.
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