I have been using ChronoForms long before I heard the term "Content Construction Kit". By defining a form and choosing the option to save the results to the database, I can create new tables, store various types of fields including images etc and build applications.

I have found very few limitations with ChronoForms so have not had much incentive to check out any CCKs.

I am wondering if ChronoForms does everything a CCK can do or should I be learning about Zoo, Seblod, Cobalt, K2 or FLEXIcontent etc?

7 Answers 7


I think that's it's probably pretty hard to identify from a architecture or database design standpoint how chrono or perhaps fabrik are "different" from K2 or FlexiContent or anything else. In my opinion all these things do the same thing: store data in a database and give you the ability to customize the way that data is interpreted and presented for display and for input. Basically you're down the interface look and feel of how that input or display is done, the data is stored in a way that is pretty unimportant.

That said, I think that "real" CCKs or CCKs that market themselves as such have at least a few features I consider important: URL Routing, User Friendly interfaces, shared category structures, ACL, and templating.

Now - I'm sure a lot of those things I mentioned can be done in ChronoForms. I use fabrik but I consider both tools to be pretty similar so I am basing my opinions on my experience with that. Personally the routing in Fabrik isn't so hot. Also adding things like ACL or categories is completely possible, but it's not so intuitive or 'baked in' as these other CCKs have it.

In the end - you can get away with either approach as a way to develop custom content types and output - I wouldn't get too caught up in the semantics of what makes a CCK different from a "application architecture" tool - I'd focus on what you need to get done and which tool gets you there the fastest.


Chronoforms is a forms component, which can also be used to customise the login process, or create simple payment gateway processes. It's not a CCK, but you can create some of the functionality using ChronoConnectivity which allows you to create your own tables (and hence data structures).

My personal opinion is that there are better CCK tools out there. For what it's worth, my favourite is K2. It's more user friendly than a lot of the others and is reasonably extendable out of the box. Certainly, if you just wanted to create a listing if widgets with custom fields, it's really easy to get going.


There no clear term what CCK is, so it depend from point of view :)

CCK term comes from Drupal, where the module with the name CCK, that was made for extend the Node, by adding extra fields.

so from this point of view Chronoforms is not a CCK, because it do not extend the Content in Joomla!.

Also this means that Joomla! have no real CCK. Only Seblod more close to it.


I haven't used ChronoForms, but I have used K2 and Zoo. Both of them feel like they're made to overcome some shortfalls with the stock Article system. They both use "items" instead of articles, and then you can (nearly infinitely) expand on what that article can display by adding things like extra fields and 3rd party plugins (such as google maps). Think of it as a very customizable article system.

With K2 you can style categories and even override the output greatly and all the articles in each category take on that format and style. There are also some great filtering modules available that can use both tags and extra fields to sort the results.

Since you can completely customize the output, you can create loads of extra fields in the back end (plus images and image galleries), populate it there, and then have them display the data in a custom layout on the front end.

With Joomla 3.x and tags, plus some 3rd party custom field plugins you can get closer to this with the stock articles, but it's not quite there yet.

I have no idea how close this is to ChronoForms, but the name (to me) denotes it's made for gathering info on the front end. While Zoo can do this (and I assume K2, but I've never done it), I don't feel like that's the primary function of these CCKs.


I would say that Zoo is very much a different thing from Chronoforms. I use both, and for different reasons. Chronoforms is great for applications which require an action (a form/input) and I love the visual presentation and flexibility of Zoo. It depends entirely on your needs on a particular project.


I would say that it definitely has to do with what you want to do and how you would define the CCK. I haven't work extensively with ChronoForms and have small experience with ChronoEngine.

I would consider CF to be more a Forms Component, with the ability to build custom database apps using the CE. At some point this can be considered similar to a CCK.

At the same time, components like K2 or Seblod are dedicated and designed to provide exactly this kind of functionality, which will allow you to create your custom content items easily and fast.

Worth to mention another extension that can be considered as a CCK for Joomla, and fits to the definition of CCK by Fedik, as it actually extends Joomla's core content component. This is the Fields Attach (http://extensions.joomla.org/extensions/authoring-a-content/content-construction/18564) and it provides fields types to extend joomla articles.

Recently I started using Fabrik, which I think, combines some powerful features and can be used as an application builder (similar to ChronoForms with ChronoEngine) and potentially someone can build a custom content system.

Concluding, again it is what will work best for each project's specific requirements. Getting involved and learning more, will only be beneficial and you will be able to decide what fits better to you and your projects.


CCK content customisation kit. Chronoforms is a forms component, because it doesnt affect the way the content is displayed.

K2 is a CCK because because it customise the way of displaying items . Virtuemart is a CCK because it customise the way of displaying items (list of products).

sh404sef is not a CCK because it doesnt affect content but URL.....

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