By Andrew






The end of support for and the alternatives

The end of support for and the alternatives


Last month, announced that they would be ending support for their git-based content management system (CMS) called Forestry on 22nd March 2023. This has left many website owners and developers, ourselves included, scrambling to find an alternative that can meet their needs. We are currently working together with our clients who are currently using Forestry to find an alternative headless CMS, so we have put together this short review of some of the most popular like-for-like alternatives out there. But what is a git-based CMS, and what alternatives are available? In this article, we’ll take a look at three popular options that can help you transition away from CloudCannon, Netlify CMS, and TinaCMS.

What is a Git-Based CMS?

A git-based CMS is essentially a content management system that utilizes version control software such as Git or Mercurial to manage changes and updates to your website. This type of system provides an easy way for developers to track changes, roll back any unwanted modifications, and collaborate on projects without the need for manual intervention. Additionally, some git-based systems can be used with static site generators such as Jekyll or Hugo for those who want to create websites using plain text files instead of databases.

As a counterpoint to our other review of headless Content Management Systems, We have tried to evaluate a couple of alternatives to Forestry on a like–for-like basis. So we have only chosen git-based CMS here. Having used Forestry for the last three years we feel it’s most redeeming features were:

  1. Ease of implementation
  2. Free plan
  3. Drag and drop page builder
  4. Visual preview
  5. Git-based for version control

On our quest for an alternative to Forestry we have tried to find CMS that fulfills all of these criteria.


CloudCannon is an all-in-one Content Management platform designed specifically for teams who use static site generators like Jekyll or Hugo. Cloudcannon CMS is an incredibly powerful and flexible content management system that makes it easier than ever before to manage website content. It allows you to quickly and easily create, edit, and update your website’s pages, using a visual builder that eliminates the need for coding.

The main benefit of using Cloudcannon CMS is its ability to provide superior content control in a very user-friendly way. With its drag-and-drop user interface, it’s easy to create beautiful webpages with no HTML or CSS knowledge necessary - allowing people of all technical abilities to get up and running in no time. Additionally, the platform allows you to manage multiple sites from one dashboard, making it ideal for clients who need help managing several websites at once.

Cloudcannon CMS also provides top-notch security features to keep your data safe and secure - including support for two-factor authentication. This ensures that only authorized personnel can access your site’s information - thus giving you peace of mind knowing that your valuable data is secure from malicious attackers. Additionally, Cloudcannon CMS stores your source code offsite via git-based version control - which allows you to make changes without affecting any live sites, as well as view diffs between versions for easy comparison.

On top of this, Cloudcannon CMS has extensive SEO capabilities built into the platform - including options for creating meta descriptions for each page on your website as well as automated sitemaps (for submission to search engines). This really boosts the visibility of your website by ensuring that search engine bots can quickly index all site pages in order to display them prominently in searches.

To sum up, Cloudcannon CMS is an amazing tool which provides powerful content control capabilities in an intuitive manner while also offering unbeatable security features and SEO optimization tools. It’s a great choice if you’re looking for a headless, git-based CMS with a visual builder - and even works with websites built with the Hugo!

Netlify CMS

Netlify CMS is another popular choice for those looking for a git-based solution. It’s built on top of the popular NodeJS framework and integrates seamlessly with Netlify’s hosting services for easy deployment and scaling of websites as needed. Additionally, it supports both client side editing through an intuitive UI as well as server side editing via the command line if desired by more advanced users or development teams working on larger projects. It also supports webhooks so you can deploy changes automatically when certain conditions are met—such as when new content is published or when edits are made in the editor itself—saving time and effort in the long run.

Netlify CMS’s key features include: an intuitive user interface, flexible templating engines, granular access controls, robust version control tools, collaboration features, and more. Its drag-and-drop editor enables novice users to create dynamic webpages without any prior knowledge of HTML or CSS. It also supports custom scripts for extending its functionality further, allowing users to customize their experience even more. Netlify CMS is a bit more difficult to set up than forestry and users wishing to convert should bear this in mind

Netlify CMS also offers rich media integration options including support for images, videos, audio files and other rich media types. This enables site owners to upload files directly into their own repository using the built in file manager which is especially useful if they want to store static assets like logos independently from the rest of their content database.

Overall Netlify CMS is an excellent choice for anyone looking for an easy way to create dynamic web pages quickly while still having the ability to customize them according to their needs. Its simple but powerful interface is suitable for both beginners and experts alike making it one of the most versatile solutions currently available on the market today. We do however have reservations that the project may be stale. The last update to the github repository was back in May 2022 and there are currently 81 unresolved pull requests.


TinaCMS is one of the most exciting new developments in content management systems. It’s a headless, git-based CMS that makes it easier than ever to manage websites and applications online. With TinaCMS, developers can easily create an intuitive user experience with dynamic content editing capabilities and collaborate in real-time with stakeholders on website design and development. Be aware however that unless you have a react-based site, the visual editing is currently severely limited and you will only have a basic CMS. So it’s a bit of a no-go for Hugo users currently.

In terms of features, TinaCMS offers a robust set of tools for website creators and developers to take advantage of. Users can easily create custom fields, drag-and-drop components, add images and videos, plus they have access to version control with every change they make. This helps ensure no changes are ever lost or overwritten by mistake. Additionally, TinaCMS allows users to preview live changes before publishing them or saving them as drafts.

In addition to its powerful features, TinaCMS is incredibly secure and easy to use. The system was built using the best security practices available and it offers users granular control over permissions for editing content across multiple sites. Additionally, it’s also highly extensible so developers can customize the system for their specific needs without having to write any code from scratch.

Overall, TinaCMS is an excellent choice for developers looking for a powerful and secure way to manage their websites and applications online without needing any coding knowledge or skillsets. Its intuitive user interface makes it simple enough for anyone involved in the project to understand how it works while giving experienced developers plenty of options for customization. With its excellent security protocols and ability to quickly publish changes live or save them as draft versions, TinaCMS has quickly become one of the most popular content management systems on the market today.


As you can see, there are plenty of alternatives available if you’re looking for something other than after it ends support in March 2022 . Whether you’re looking for a fully featured all-in-one platform like CloudCannon, something simple yet powerful like Netlify CMS, or something customizable like TinaCMS , there’s sure to be something out there that fits your needs perfectly! Don’t forget that these solutions also come with plenty of helpful resources such as tutorials , documentation , forums , etc., but don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions! Good luck finding your perfect fit!