We're on a governamental organization with about 150-160 users. This organization is spread between a central office, and 10 small delegations, with 4-5 workers on each delegation.

We're looking for a Intranet solution. We're not limited to any particular technical requirements, so it can be PHP, Java or .NET based, but we're looking for an Open Source and free (as beer) solution.

What do we need? We need Active Directory and MS Exchange integration (login, groups, emails, calendars, etc), a documentation manager (something like Alfresco), we must integrate it with our custom-developed solutions (via webservices or rss), and it should be customizable to create new modules, etc.

Here, we develop mainly in PHP and Java.

So, which Intranet solution can you recommend to us?

Some more information:

  • The intranet must work with an Oracle database
  • Currently we have a large Windows share (the X: drive) with lots of shared information (word documents, pdf's, etc). The idea is to centralize all this information in the intranet, grouped by organization teams
  • We have some custom-made tools, some written in PHP + Symfony 1.4, and some (lots) written in MS Access. We want to rewrite all this tools (as needed), and integrate them to the intranet
  • Currently we have Active Directory and MS Exchange servers, and we want to integrate them with the new intranet: centralized authentication and authorization (groups and so), and share calendars and tasks from the Exchange server between groups
  • We have some backend tools that generate RSS feeds as some events are fired (some kind of logs). We want to consume and display this feeds in the intranet
  • Microsoft Sharepoint allow development of intranet site and also allow sharing of document internally with notes and links that standard network drive don't offer. Another similar solution is Lotus Notes/ Gold Notes can't recall the exact name but it's from same company as the the old Lotus 1-2-3 in the 90's. You are saying mainly PHP and Java so by mainly i supposed other language too. If you have Java Devs then very good chance they can pick up C# to average level in 2-3 days and then Sharepoint become a better option as it supports WCF services (.net 4.0)
    – Franck
    Jan 26, 2015 at 12:34
  • @Franck: Thank you for your comment, but as stated in the main question, we're looking for an open source & free (as beer) solution.
    – mHouses
    Jan 26, 2015 at 12:53

2 Answers 2


You could use open source CMS software and their extensions and some custom development:

  1. Joomla (PHP based)
  2. Drupal (PHP based)
  3. Hippo (Java based)

However there are many options: see a checklist at wikipedia if you want more.

To be more specific people that answer your question might need more functional specifications (what type of governmental organisation is it, what do you want to achieve with the intranet, functional must haves, should haves and want to haves?)

Your needs are covered in the examples above. Of course to a certain extend, which should be investigated further.


With the infrastructure you described most entities I would think would gravitate towards MS Sharepoint except it has a lot of its own draw backs and is expensive from what I understand.

What I do not see in your question is entirely what you want to do with the Intranet, and one thing to consider is are you trying to purely present information or are you trying to collaborate?

If you are trying to collaborate you might consider a Wiki (some for consideration), but more so if you can get a small initial upfront budget to get it in the door I am a big fan of the JIRA / Confluence infrastructure, or even just the JIRA with Agile which is even cheaper.

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