SurrealCMS - anyone used it?

I’ve just signed up to a free 14 trial to SurrealCMS (and Peloton but that’s a different conversation).

I’ve had a few good reports about this and it appears to be super simple to implement. You just add your FTP detail so some code can be added to your site by SurrealCMS, then just add the class editable (or any other class name you choose) to anything you want to make editable on the live page.

There are several pricing tiers but the first one is 5 sites for $10/month which if you are doing several appears to be quite reasonable.

I’m hoping to find some time in between the pies to try it out.

Anyone else have any experience with SurrealCMS?

You don’t eat pies while you work?


It’s a good all-round CMS, and like CushyCMS, it has been around for a great many years. I think the company I work for were using SurrealCMS in at least one website, before we went over to concrete5 / WebYep.

SurrealCMS have announced the new version 7. Interestingly there is a new freemium plan which allows you to use it on up to 3 sites for free.

It must be the simplest of CMS’s there are.

You load the SurrealSMC code to your site and add the class cms-editable to what ever you want to edit online. So if you want to make a Header Pro editable, just add the class to the HeaderPro Class box and you are good to go.

I’ve been waiting to try this. The previous version wouldn’t work with my server and the developer assured me version 7 will be OK.

That’s interesting. Looking forward to hearing that it works OK with your server.

My server requires explicit FTPS and this wasn’t possible with Surreal. Cory told me this would be fixed in Surreal 7 and was a limitation of the old FTP library.

Creator here. This changed based on feedback.

The free plan is unlimited for personal, educational, and non-profit use. The paid plans are $9/mo or $19/mo depending on the features you need. All plans are unlimited sites now.

More details here.

Give it another try. Others have had success where they didn’t with the old library. If you have any trouble, just let me know.

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Welcome to the RW4ALL forum.

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Hi, this looks pretty interesting. Can I ask a few things…

  1. For the $9 a month I can add CMS to any of my client sites, with each client being able to log into a unique dashboard and edit only their site?

  2. How/what content is editable? I get the idea of how to set an editable zone on my website, but how/what content can be dropped into it? Do you have a range of “widgets” that get dropped into the zones from from site? Tat’s a bad explanation, have you any demo videos on how things actually work?


The $9 plan is Surreal CMS branded, whereas The $19 plan lets you use your own branding (i.e. white-label). In either case, clients will only see the website(s) you’ve given them access to. They will not see other clients or other websites.

Content regions are defined by adding the cms-editable class to various elements on the page. What you can add to a content region depends on the type of element you’ve made editable.

For example, an editable <div> will give you a block region, which is the most flexible. You can add headings, paragraphs, images, videos, lists, alignment, etc.

Other elements are more restrictive. For example, a heading will give you an inline region with less options. (Note the simpler toolbar.)

You can also make backgrounds, galleries, images, and links editable, and even define plain-text regions if you don’t want any HTML in them.

New content

So, editing existing content is pretty straightforward, but you also asked about inserting new content. There are a handful of options in the Insert menu.

Most of the menu items are self-explanatory, but blocks are really handy. A block is nothing more than an HTML snippet that you define in Surreal and can then insert into your content.

Imagine a webpage with a list of events, for example. You could define a block that looks something like this:

<div class="event">
  <img class="event-image" src="default.jpg" alt="Description">
  <h3 class="event-title">Lorem Ipsum</h3>
  <p class="event-date">May 14, 2019</p>

Then you can insert it into the page using the editor. You can take things a step further and lock the structure of a block and/or make it repeatable for easier adding/removing/reordering.

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Interesting, thanks. I’ll get a free account setup and see how it goes.

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