A few thoughts about working with Perch CMS - a system that I have worked with for over ten years. I like its templating system and the original, small team behind it were friendly and knowledgeable.
What's Happening with Perch CMS
In my only Notes post from last year, I wrote about Perch CMS and its new owners. Since then, about a week ago, the new owners have released Perch Runway 4 and discontinued standard Perch. That's not exactly a surprise and was always the likely direction of travel for the new owners (Perch Runway Ltd). Unfortunately, there has been very little communication about this apart from a short note in the account section of the Perch website. This lack of communication isn't the best way to run a software company in my opinion but, of course, that's entirely the Perch team's prerogative.
On the plus side, it seems that standard Perch licenses will work with Perch Runway 4. I've not tested that by upgrading a standard Perch site yet.
The new Perch Runway 4 doesn't have a public changelog, and there's no post about it on the Perch website, so I'd like to know more before recommending it to clients. I have updated one of my Runway 3 sites to Runway 4 but I had a problem getting it to work because the license authentication failed. Other people have also reported similar problems. So, I won't be upgrading my sites or clients' sites for the moment.
As a result of virtually zero communication, no forum posts or support, a restyled Perch Runway site that has a few problems, and the lack of activity around Perch in general, my confidence in the 'new' Perch team is very low and I'm unlikely to recommend Perch to new clients. I will be using another CMS for new projects.
Last year, I stopped publishing the Perchology Newsletter. This was also a decision resulting from lack of activity around Perch.
All this is a bit of a shame because I have loved working with Perch. But, things change so it's time to move on....