DotNetNuke has been around for a very long time. The company started in 2006 but with roots in an earlier open source content management framework for the Microsoft .Net environment. In that context the name DotnetNuke made sense. It made a lot less sense in the context of commercial software. For many of the decision makers of content management solution purchases, mainly website managers and marketing people, the stack it was built on mattered little. In fact, it was confusing. What is a DotNet and why do we want to nuke it? The name was a branding drag and not an asset.
While reflagging a company and its products is not an easy task, it was one that the company had to perform if they wanted to speak to anyone but .Net programmers. The company is now known as DNN which reflects its history without confusing new buyers. Not only have they changed the company name but the product names as well. The open source CMS product is now simply the DNN Platform while the commercial products have been renamed Evoq Content and Evoq Social.
Along with the rebranding, DNN has also announced that their products are available in a SaaS version called Evoq Cloud. That’s interesting in so far as it follows a trend set by many on-premises software vendors. What is really interesting is their approach. Cloud software tends to be multi-tenant, with different customers sharing the same code and back-end resources including a unified database. Not so with Evoq Cloud. Instead, each Evoq Cloud customer gets it’s own instance in the Microsoft Azure cloud service.
There are a lot of companies that are concerned about the security of their cloud applications in multi-tenant environments. DNN’s approach, gives customers a middle choice between deploying on-premises or in a privately purchased cloud instance and a multi-tenant cloud experience. For companies that want more security and control over their CMS environment but don’t want to have to maintain their own server environment, Evoq Cloud provides a viable alternative.
It’s gratifying to see DNN transform from a company that only a geek could love to one that has universal value. It’s an opportunity for them to breakout from, but not abandon, their .Net roots and appeal to a wider audience.