This post started out titled Pros and Cons of MODx CMS, but today I'm rewriting it because I'm really not in the mood to give you a bunch of fluff about why MODx is great and then give you the bad stuff. Flat out, I think MODx is the best CMS for my projects at this point in time. Now on with things that suck...
It says its a Framework, but I use it as a CMS
If you have used frameworks in the past, MODx is not going to feel like a true framework. My personal fav framework is CodeIgniter and there is just no comparison between the two. The MODx API is very poorly documented, small, and weak compared to all of the functionality included in CodeIgniter, and CodeIgniter is a simple framework. I just don't see the structure there to really call it a framework, and I would prefer to call it a CMS with an open or pluggable architecture. When I need extensive custom database functionality I bring in CodeIgniter to do it because MODx lacks features that would make it easy (CRUD tools, a data editor, dynamic data module, etc).
Membership Management sucks
This is probably the thing I hate most about MODx. The Membership Management for Web Users and Manager Users is really difficult to work with, doesn't fit most workflows, and is counter to how easy the rest of the system is to use. I need a member management system that allows for one manager user to manage one page if need be, and this is just a nightmare to set up with the groups and document groups system. What I really want is a system that allows me to set up roles (controls what they can do), create a user with that role, and then select individually what pages that user can edit, or what group of pages they can edit. I also want the functionality to make all pages have some kind of default level of security, like all pages can only be seen by the administrator, who can then give users permission to see specific pages (MODx is works pretty much opposite to this). IMO this has to be totally rewritten to function better.
Ditto isn't a blog
Ditto is practically core to MODx so I'll complain about it... Sure you can make a blog with Ditto, but why? If you have a client that is serious about blogging then set them up with Wordpress. I made the mistake of doing a blog with Ditto for one of my clients and while you can do it, it's too much of a pain to set up for how little features you get.
Last gripe goes for a lot of things
I know it's probably not fair to pick on MODx while it's still getting around, but I always end up using what I call MODx+...MODx plus some other software that can do something MODx can't. It's a real tribute to MODx that I can make most programs work seamlessly with it, but it's also kind of sad that they don't have a fully featured ecommerce module, calendar module, blog module, etc. If you use MODx you can probably plan on using other things along side it.
Seriously, Scriptaculous and Mootools together? Thanks for making us use both, not. And the Horizontal marquee is broken now, too...arg.
Now I know that the MODx dev team is working on a lot of these things, and we're all awaiting 0.9.7 to drop out of heaven, but in the mean time, all these things still suck. And isn't it nice to know that these are the only things that really bother me about the CMS? I mean, everything else is great or not bad enough to warrant a rant.