ContentBox Look & Feel Issues

I’m new to CB and went through a ton of issues installing CB with my hosting provider. We eventually installed CB 4.2.1 on a Lucee server.

Now I’m trying to do simple first step things such as changing the look and feel and I’ve noticed some issues. I’m too frustrated to pour over all of the documentation and previous comments for a solution. I’m about ready to pull the plug on CB and reluctantly go with WordPress. I hate WordPress because of the security issues.

Please explain to me why when I attempt to change the Bootswatch theme to “Flatly” I get the default-green Hero background on “Blog”. It’s bad enough that you’ve used a very old version of Bootstrap and Bootswatch. I can’t use the theme I want which is available in the latest Bootswatch. But then to choose a valid theme in your current list, I get styling that is inconsistent with the actual theme. Oh and the “preview” button doesn’t actually do anything. I have to save settings and view the full site to see the changes. EDIT: I see that flatly uses green for some of the elements but the Hero/Jumbotron is grey in Bootswatch not green. So that’s where I’m confused.

I’m too frustrated at this point to play around and try to figure out how to fix this myself. I’m nearly done with CB as a CMS. So unless there is a simple solution that someone can point me to, I’m over this and I’m moving to something else.

The bugs, errors, typos (I have an LD in reading comprehension) are never ending.

After a couple of days sitting in this cluster**** of files and errors and random quirky behavior, I’ve had a chance to compare different versions of ContentBox. I get that you are a small team offering an alternative to Mura, which is going proprietary in August, and WordPress. My hosting provider seemed to think ContentBox was great and really pushed me down this avenue. Frankly, I’d prefer something CFML related as I’ve worked in the ColdFusion environment since 2009. But I’ve only had limited exposure to CMS, specifically WordPress, until now. ContentBox seems to have a ton of random quirky issues, doesn’t install consistently on platforms it says it supports, and other unexpected behaviors.

I’m still trying to make this platform work for me, but it really is frustrating to work with the platform. I can’t imagine an average CMS user sticking with this platform for very long. That is truly unfortunate as WordPress is such a high risk platform. I’ve had friends use it and get hacked. I don’t want to go there, but I feel I have few options. No [average] CMS user should have to look under the hood to fix issues out of the box. I’m really disappointed so far with ContentBox. It makes ColdFusion look bad.

I wish I had more positive things to say about ContentBox. But bottom line is all I want is what everyone else wants: a CMS that works as expected out of the box. And I just don’t see that happening with ContentBox in the wild.

Thank you for your comments. We are working very hard to make sure the installation experience changes for this release. Beleive that managing not only 4 different CFML engines: lucee, adobe 2016, adobe 2018 and adobe 2021 and multiple databases: MySQL, PostgreSQL, MSSQL and Oracle is a gargantuan task.

We have introduced a new CLI tool called contentbox-cli which you can install with CommandBox box install contentbox-cli and it will go through a wizard to make sure you can install it and not have to peak inside.

It would also help the engineering team to have specifics of those frustrations, because that is the only way we can take this feedback and address it. So if you can specify in specifics then we can create tickets and address the issues you face. If not, only you know and we can’t replicate :slight_smile:

Forgot the link:

Once you install you can use contentbox install ? and that will show you the options to install ContentBox. YOu can also find the api docs for the command here: install

We have also just committed today the install-wizard command. Which will guide you by the hand in setting up the CMS by asking you all of the setup questions.


I appreciate you personally following up. That means a lot knowing you take end-user frustrations so seriously. I have been able to work with my hosting provider (Hostek) to get Contentbox 4.2.1+737 installed. Part of my frustration is that I’m used to having full server access through my work, but am installing Contentbox on a shared server with my personal account. Of course, more control over server functionality is preferable when possible.

I was able to address one of the problems by turning off caching for now. I’ve had a deep dive into the code and using a folder/file diff program. I’ve never seemed to get the hang of git. I’m old school and still remember the Dreamweaver check-in/check-out days when it was just me and one or two other developers. I appreciate the ubiquitous need for git in larger development projects. I also prefer pushing buttons over CLI as I’m a long time Windows user. I prefer my coding skills be used in creating applications that work and look great rather than telling the OS what I want to do at each step. And we won’t mention containers. As I said I’m old school. :grimacing:

I’m determined to get Bootswatch 5 to work with Contentbox 4.2.1+737 as there is a specific theme new to Bootswatch 5 that I want to use. I’ll let you know how that goes. I am so unfamiliar with the Ortus system that using Commandbox and Forgebox seems overly complicated to me. I’ll have to wait until I’m more familiar with Contentbox and the other programs before I’m comfortable jumping into the rest of the platform.

Now that I have a stable and working platform I can step back and take my time with the CMS. This should allow me the time and mental capacity to give more detailed explanations of issues I face. I’ll be happy to document specific issues when I encounter them.

Thank you again for personally responding to my posts.


HI @T_Superhero . Great feedback. I agree, dealing with shared hosting is a pain in all reality. There are too many restrictions and really difficult to work with. Question, why not go with Digital Ocean and get your own Droplet for almost $10/month?

Also, I recommend you look at ContentBox 5 RC. We are going to release RC 2 by end of the month and Final by end of August.

This way, your path can be faster and easier and supported.

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To piggy back on that-- it may serve you well to play with ContentBox a bit on your local machine. Testing stuff out on a hosting provider where you have little control can be difficult. I realize you aren’t as familiar with some of the newer CLI tooling, but it’s possible to spin up a self contained ContentBox CMS instance locally using an embedded DB without installing anything other than CommandBox CLI and running a few commands. That may give you a little better workflow to just poke around at stuff in a scenario where you have full control of the server and it’s just on your local file system. You don’t need CF, or IIS, or anything. Just CommandBox.

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Hi Luis,

I’ve mentioned the upcoming ContentBox 5 upgrade to the support team. I will have them target ContentBox 5 RC. For about $10/month I get the shared host plus email with a ton of mailboxes, unlimited domain aliases, unlimited bandwidth, etc. and a basic SSL/TLS Cert and they do a ton of heavy lifting on the backend at no additional charge. I have plenty of PC capacity at home to experiment. So I might try that first, then look at switching to a new plan or new provider. Thank you for the recommendations.


Hi Brad,

Thanks for the suggestions. As I just said in my reply to Luis, I have plenty of PC capacity at home to experiment. Now that the ContentBox is installed and stable, besides changing the themes I need to switch gears a bit to getting the store/commerce side of things going.

I’ll then be free to experiment on my local machine. I appreciate the suggestions and was unaware I could do CommandBox without CF, Java, etc. CF Developer runs just fine on Windows 10 with Java installed. So no need for IIS. But being able to bypass CF & Java is even better.