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Just in case you have not gotten enough open source cms news in recent days, here is one more item for your plate. The next version of the popular open source Web CMS platform, Drupal, has entered a code freeze as the development team works toward stabilization. As exciting as this announcement is for Drupal users, what is more interesting is that with this version 6.0 Drupal joins AOL, LiveJournal, Moveable Type v4.0 and Wordpress.com, among others, in supporting the new OpenID authentication standard.Drupal is a free, open source publishing platform that allows individuals or communities of users to easily publish, manage, and maintain a variety of content on a website. Examples of the different ways that Drupal can be used include: * Personal web sites or blogs, such as Tim Berners-Lee's site * Podcast sites, such as Leo Laporte's Twit.tv * Community driven sites, such as SpreadFireFox.com * Large media sites, such as TheOnion.com and MTV UK Along with the core Drupal application -- which utilizes the LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) technology stack -- advanced functionality can be added by using one of the many community contributed add-on modules. These modules include the ability to add support for blog management, collaborative authoring, forums, newsletters, podcasting, picture galleries, etc. The upcoming version 6.0 of Drupal will include the following enhancements: * Improved logging - which will make many a developer happy * Improvements in the language system, including: support for right to left languages, advanced language detection, support for translating posts to different languages * Drastic theme system improvements * Improved installer * Support for OpenID

What is OpenID?

OpenID is an attempt to solve the identity problem that exists across the different websites that require authentication via username and password. OpenID hopes to solve this problem by giving users the ability to substitute a URL in place of a username/password combination. For example, a person whose website is http://www.myhomepage.com can register this URL as an OpenID and then use it for authentication at any site that supports OpenID. The individual websites, though they support OpenID, will still most likely want users to have their own username specific to the website. However, the website specific username is no longer needed for authentication, it is simply for personalization because authentication has been handled up front via OpenID.

The OpenID Dilemma

Although the ability to use a single authentication token across multiple websites is a big win for internet power users and usability advocates, there remains a bit of a chicken and egg problem. End users are slow to create OpenID's because they are waiting for more sites to support the standard. Website providers are slow to support OpenID authentication because they are waiting for more end users to create OpenID's. Hopefully, the inclusion of OpenID support in the core of Drupal 6.0 will help get this ball rolling.

Getting Started with OpenID

Details about OpenID and how to create your own OpenID can be found at the OpenID site. Set up time is trivial, so if you fancy yourself a bit of an early adopter, dig in now.

Share Your Experiences

Are you currently using Drupal? Do you love it or do you wish some things worked better? What advice do you have for organizations looking to implement Drupal? Are you actively using OpenID? What has your experience been so far? We are interested in answers to these questions or just your opinion, feel free to jump down to the bottom of this page and let us know what you think. In related open source cms news: OpenCMS released version 7.0.0, JBoss made available a new version of their portal application, and SocialText is seeking OSI Certification for their hybrid Mozilla/Attribution license.