|Developer(s)||DNN Corporation |
|Operating system||Microsoft Windows or Cloud|
|Platform||ASP.NET or Cloud|
DNN is written in C#, though it existed for many years as a VB.NET project. It is distributed under both a Community Edition MIT license  and commercial proprietary licenses as DNN Evoq Content and DNN Evoq Engage editions.
DNN Platform (formerly "DotNetNuke Community Edition" content management system) is open source software that is intended to allow management of websites without much technical knowledge, and to be extensible through a large number of third-party apps to provide functionality not included in the DNN core modules. Skins can be used to change the look of a website using DNN.
There are two commercial editions of the software with increased functionality compared to DNN Platform, and technical support. The DotNetNuke Professional Edition was introduced in February 2009 with version 4.9. In July 2013, DotNetNuke Professional Edition was renamed Evoq Content. In addition, DotNetNuke Enterprise Edition was renamed Evoq Content: Enterprise. Evoq version 9.0 was released in December 2016.
DotNetNuke uses a three-tier architecture model with a core framework providing support to the extensible modular structure.
While traditionally DNN focused on providing server side functionality, recent projects strive to enhance client side experiences - along with the rest of the industry. In recent years DNN migrated from using exclusively Web Forms to also allowing Model View Controller and Single-page application architectures. In the future, DNN faces the challenge of moving from ASP.NET 4.6 to the cross-platform free and open source .NET Core.
DNN can be extended using 3rd-party modules and providers that add functionality at the server or client side. The appearance of individual pages and sites can be customized using skins.
The default functionality of DNN can be expanded by adding third-party modules, either from an existing module store, from 3rd party authors, or through in-house development of custom functionality. The DNN framework provides basic functionality such as security, user administration, and content management, while modules are used to tailor the web site for specific deployment needs.
A set of primary modules are included with the core DNN distribution. These modules provide the functionality required to create an e-commerce system, an intranet, a public web site or a custom web application. They are maintained by a volunteer team community. In 2015 and 2016 most projects were moved from the DotNetNuke Community Forge to GitHub.
Web pages have skins which define regions of a page (plus their appearance) where page editors can place modules (or extensions) made available by site administrators. Pages and modules can inherit or set custom access permissions that define which groups of users can view or edit each item.
Module can be created in various ways: compiled modules use the Web Application Project model and are written in C# or VB.NET, dynamic modules use the Web Site Project model, and Razor modules which use a C# or VB.NET scripting language.
Upon Microsoft's release of the .NET Framework version 2, Microsoft had included functionality known as master pages. The principal idea behind master pages was to encourage code recycling and consistent design and aesthetics throughout a site by creating a master page with placeholders, which at runtime would be compiled and replaced by content.
DNN 7.0 and above has a minimum requirement of Windows Vista, SQL Server 2008, and .NET 4.0 and IIS 7+. These product's latest versions are supported. As of version 6.0, DNN can also be installed in an Azure cloud computing environment. Numerous web hosting companies offer DNN as an offering, and a 1 step installation process is available through Microsoft. However DNN's requirement for an IIS medium trust environment has prevented broader adoption among some mainstream hosting companies.
DNNSoftware.com has over 1 million registered members as of November 2013 and is used on some 750,000 websites globally. Support for the Community Edition of DotNetNuke is provided by community members and developers can participate in the open-source project on GitHub.
API reference documents for modules and skins are available, although as of 2013, some documentation was still available only in task-oriented form. A Wiki has been created to address this weakness, with 400 wiki pages as of May 2014.
The DotNetNuke application originally evolved out of another project, the IBuySpy Workshop. The IBuySpy Workshop application had been created by Shaun Walker  as an enhancement to the IBuySpy Portal that started as a sample application for the .NET Framework. Early versions of DotNetNuke were released by Walker's company, Perpetual Motion Inc, while later development was expanded by the open source community.
The name DotNetNuke was coined by Walker by combining the term .NET with the word "nuke", which had been popular with pre-existing frameworks such as PHP-Nuke and PostNuke. The term DotNetNuke and DNN are registered trademarks in the US (Search USPTO) and Canada.
In September 2006, four members of the project's board of directors formed a corporation to oversee the development of the project. The new DotNetNuke Corporation was co-founded by Walker, Joe Brinkman, Nik Kalyani, and Scott Willhite and replaced Perpetual Motion Interactive Systems Inc. as the corporate entity behind the project.
On November 25, 2008, DotNetNuke announced Series A financing from Sierra Ventures and August Capital, and in February 2009, after hiring Navin Nagiah as CEO, a Professional Edition version of DotNetNuke has been released for business and enterprise customers. In February 2010 DotNetNuke announced a Series B financing from Sierra Ventures, August Capital, and Pelion Venture Partners.
In August 2009 a partner program was launched by DotNetNuke Corporation, aimed at providing support to the web design and development companies that build web sites using DotNetNuke. DotNetNuke Corporation also announced the acquisition of Snowcovered, an online market for DotNetNuke modules, skins, services and related products.
In October 2009, the 2009 Open Source CMS Market Share Report concluded that DotNetNuke was the leading .NET-based open source web content management system.
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