This tutorial lays out the basics for creating a content management system in ColdFusion and MySQL. The System leverages hierarchical data to automatically build breadcrumb lists, a side navigation menu, as well as a site map. The goal of this tutorial is to provide a framework upon which to build a content management system that is easy to customize and maintain, leaving the web author more time to create content than maintain code.


These days everyone has a web site or wants one. Unless you want to crack open a book and learn a lot of interesting HTML, you need to get some sort of program or content management system. Content management systems allow you to add and update pages without any other programs to edit the HTML.

The content management system I will describe and walk through will be built in ColdFusion with a MySQL database in the background storing the pages. Along with the ability to add, modify and delete pages, there will also be a self-generating breadcrumb list at the top of the page as well as self-generating menus and a site map. All of this is designed so that there is minimal maintenance, so you can spend more time generating content and less time worrying about coding.

A couple of notes about this system: I will not be adding any sort of browser-based HTML editor in this tutorial. My preference is to code the HTML myself. Just be aware however, that it is easy to add whichever in-line editor you wish. Also, if you are going to use this on the Internet, you will have to tie in a system to verify who you are (Log in and out) so you can have the administrative links show on the page if you are logged in.

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