Web Design & Development Guide



Developer: Mambo Foundation Inc.
Latest release: Latest releases / April 24, 2007
OS: Cross Platform, PHP-compatible -- Linux preferred
Genre: Content management system
License: GNU General Public License v.2
Website: mambo-foundation.org

Mambo (formerly named Mambo Open Source or MOS) is a free software / open source content management system (CMS) for creating and managing websites through a simple web interface. It has attracted many users due to its ease of use. Mambo also includes more advanced features such as page caching to improve performance on busy sites, advanced templating techniques, and a fairly robust API. It can also automate many tasks such as web indexing for static pages. Mambo can provide RSS feeds, printable versions of pages, news flashes, blogs, forums, polls, calendars, website searching, language internationalization, and other possibilities.

Mambo is released under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL)Version 2.

The rights to the Mambo CMS codebase, name and copyrights, are protected by the Mambo Foundation, a non-profit corporation formed to support and promote the Mambo Open Source project.

The project site and downloads can be found at http://source.mambo-foundation.org, and an online demo of Mambo is available at Open Source CMS Demo


As of 08 June 2006, the minimum requirements for Mambo consist of:

  • Apache (version 1.3.19 or above)
  • MySQL (version 3.23.x or above)
  • PHP (version 4.2.x or above)

Mambo is thoroughly tested on Linux, FreeBSD, Mac OS X and Windows NT/2000/XP. Linux or one of the BSD's are recommended, but anything else that can run the three pieces of software listed above should work. Additionally, Mambo displays properly in most major browsers: Internet Explorer (version 5.5+), Netscape, Opera and Mozilla/Firefox.

PHP must have been compiled with support for MySQL and Zlib in order to successfully run Mambo. There are reports that Mambo works on Microsoft IIS, but Apache is recommended for running Mambo on Windows.

Mambo Foundation

The Mambo Foundation is a non-profit entity established under the laws of Australia. The Foundation is based on Eclipse and GNOME and is controlled by the members of the Foundation via an elected Board of Directors. The Mambo Foundation's brief is to foster the development of the Mambo system and to shelter the project from threats and misuse. The Foundation was formed in August 2005. The Mambo Foundation also has forums addressing the latest issues within Mambo, including the deployment of Mambo 5.

History of Mambo


Miro Construct Pty Ltd, registered in March 2000 in Melbourne, and headed up by CEO Peter Lamont, a former advertising executive, starts development of Mambo, a closed-source, proprietary content management system.


The company adopted a dual licensing policy, releasing Mambo Site Server under the GPL on Sourceforge in April 2001.

CEO Peter Lamont is quoted as saying at that time that the code was released to open source with the intention of gathering source contributions to improve it, until they could release it as a commercial product.

The mamboserver.com domain was registered in May, 2001.

From this time until the middle of 2002, Miro was the only developer of Mambo, contributing bug-fixes and security patches but not really extending the code or adding to the feature sets.


Miro releases the commercial CMS called Mambo 2002.

With version 3.0.x, the open source Mambo Site Server becomes "Mambo Open Source" (commonly referred to as "MOS").

Robert Castley becomes Project Director of Mambo Open Source.

By the end of 2002, Robert Castley had pulled together a volunteer team of developers.

Mambo Open Source 4.0 is released.


Early in 2003, Miro hands off the responsibility of the code fully to the Open Source project Development Team. Miro concentrates on its commercial products and Mambo Open Source goes from strength to strength under the leadership of Robert Castley.

Miro released Mambo CMS, a commercial version of Mambo Open Source. Miro claims that Mambo CMS does not contain any source added to Mambo after it was made open source.

Miro Construct Pty Ltd goes into voluntary liquidation in February 2003 and in August, Miro International Pty Ltd is formed. Source code for Mambo Open Source shows copyright 2000 - 2003 Miro Construct Pty Ltd.

In late 2003, Mambo was targeted by legal threats concerning the intellectual property rights to certain pieces of code contained in the core. The problem was severe and cost money, man hours, and eventually the loss of some key community leaders. Miro came to the aid of Mambo, offering legal and corporate resources to protect the development team and preserve the program.

Mambo Open Source 4.5 released in December 2003. By this time, almost all of the original Miro code had disappeared during refactoring.


mamboforge.net starts in March, 2004.

Linux Format awards Mambo “Best Free Software Project” of the Year.

Linux User and Developer names it “Best Linux or Open Source Software”.

In mid-2004, the name "Mambo Open Source" (which was commonly referred to as MOS) was changed to just "Mambo", causing concern in the community over apparent confusion this would cause between the open source, community-developed CMS and Miro's commercial offering, "Mambo CMS".

September: Mambo version 4.5.1 is released, followed a month later by version 4.5.1a stable.

Robert Castley resigns as Project Director and in November, Andrew Eddie takes on the role.

December 2004, the Mambo Steering Committee was established with representatives from both Miro and the Mambo development team. This committee was designed to govern the Mambo project.


January: Andrew Eddie announces a strategic partnership between Mambo and Miro International Pty Ltd, with Miro proposing to offer financial support for the open source project, plus training, commercial support services, and developer certification.

February: Discussions begin over the formation of a non-profit foundation for the Mambo project.

Versions 4.5.2 and later, are released.

The commercial Mambo CMS is renamed "Jango" in April, 2005.

“Best Open Source Solution” and “Best of Show - Total Industry Solution” at LinuxWorld Boston.

“Best Open Source Solution” at LinuxWorld San Francisco.

July: mambo-foundation.org domain is established.

August: Mambo Foundation, Inc is legally constituted on 8th August, 2005. Miro CEO, Peter Lamont, appoints himself President of the Board of the new Foundation.

12th August: Robert Castley, who is an inaugural member of the Mambo Foundation Board of Regents, states: "The Foundation allows for everything to be placed outside of Miro incl. Domain Names, hosting etc. " and goes on to say that with him, the original founder of Mambo Open Source, and Andrew Eddie both being on the Board of the Mambo Foundation, Mambo would continue as a successful, open source project. He concluded his statement with,"So there you have it two very key people in the overall success of Mambo are at the helm. Trust me, Mambo is in very, very safe hands!"

A few days later, the entire team of core programmers publicly announced they had abandoned Mambo and shortly after this, Robert Castley steps down from the Board of Regents.

The former core development team members regroup under the name "Open Source Matters" and the open source community at mamboserver.com fractures over allegations that the Mambo Foundation was formed without community input and with insufficient developer control. People express suspicion over the level of involvement by Miro International. By the end of August, the new project is named Joomla! and most of the former Mambo community has relocated to Open Source Matters. By the end of September, Open Source Matters Inc is a duly constituted non-profit corporation registered in New York.

Joomla! positions itself as a "rebranding of Mambo" and releases its first fork of Mambo as Joomla 1.0 in September, 2005. The two code-bases are almost identical at this stage.

Mambo forms a new core development team with Martin Brampton appointed as Core Development Team leader.

Miro assigns all rights in the copyright of Mambo to the Mambo Foundation.

November: Mambo version 4.5.3 is released.

December: Miro International Pty Ltd is voluntarily deregistered as a company on 31st December, 2005.


January: The rights to Miro International Pty Ltd are sold by Peter Lamont and a new business entity called Miro Software Solutions is created. Miro Software Solutions continues to develop Jango and other proprietory software under new ownership.

March: Mambo named "Best Open Source Software Solution" at LinuxWorld Australia.

April: Core developer team leader, Martin Brampton, resigns and leaves the project.

Chad Auld takes over the role as Core Developer Team leader.

Mambo 4.5.4 is released.

July: The Mambo Foundation websites become independent from Mambo Communities Pty Ltd.

August: following elections, the new Board of the Mambo Foundation takes office. The Mambo Foundation is now completely independent of any corporate interest.

September: Mambo version 4.6 is released.

October: Mambo 4.6.1 is released.


February: Mambo 4.5.5 is released. This is a maintenance release for the 4.5.x branch.

April: Mambo 4.6.2 is released. This is a maintenance release for the 4.6.x branch and enables localisation of Mambo.


  • "Best Free Software Project of the Year" - Linux Format Magazine, 2004
  • "Best Linux or Open Source Software" - LinuxUser & Developer 2004
  • "Best Open Source Solution" - LinuxWorld, Boston 2005
  • "Best of Show - Total Industry Solution" - LinuxWorld, Boston 2005
  • "Best Open Source Solution" - LinuxWorld, San Francisco 2005
  • "Best Open Source Solution" LinuxWorld, Sydney, Australia 2006

See also

External links


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