Moodle VS Chamilo – It’s a Battle!

The Moodle VS Chamilo supremacy competition has been going on for a while in the online learning platform business featuring new releases that enhance functionality. LMS (learning management systems) and VLE (virtual learning environments) have become a common phenomenon with the increased global number of internet users.

Most scholars and businesses now rely on e-learning as their preferred mode of training and resource sharing. It is amazing how much benefits these learning systems bring through enabling efficient distribution of resources including books, templates and reports. There however exists many LMS platforms, which is why choosing the right one is important to ensure you are enjoying all the advantages. When looking for an open source learning management system there are a few factors to consider and evaluate. This mainly involves weighing the features, advantages and cons of existing platforms.

Moodle VS Chamilo

Features and Functionality

Moodle and Chamilo both exhibit some similar and distinct features. The distinctions are what determine competitive advantages and which specific software users find more functional. Here are some of the features available in these e-learning platforms.


Moodle has several features that are typical of any e-learning software as well as distinctive characteristics unavailable in other systems. They include a discussion forum, assignment submission, grading, file downloading, online questions, calendar and announcements/news as well as instant messages.

They have also integrated wiki to provide needed resourceful information. The infrastructure used in Moodle also allows developers to create plugins and extend construction to suit specific functionalities. Some of them include word and math games activities, resource type filter, different question types, content filtering, authentication and accessibility among others.

Moodle users are also allowed to use PHP in writing or contributing to new modules assisted by open source programmers, which is aimed at fixing bugs. PDF generation is also possible since the modules run on TCPDF library. Moodle is SCORM compliant (SCORM 1.2) which allows it to interoperate without modification on other systems.

It can therefore be used with Linux, Unix, Windows, FreeBSD, NetWare and Mac OS X as well as any other system capable of supporting PHP. The interoperability features of Moodle include LDAP authentication and IMAP standards, enrollment, questions, resource packaging and content management integration. Users can also import quizzes from the WebCT.


This system incorporates both e-learning and content management dedicated at promoting sharing and accessibility to global users. The main features available in Chamilo include courses and training cycles, multi-institution mode, time-regulated exams, automated certificate generation and user-progress tracking. Other features are timezones, embedded network for social learning, international characters and a central management portal as well as a video conferencing system.

Chamilo is also SCORM 1.2 compliant relying on WAMP/LAMP for the server side and any modern (3 years or younger) web browser for the client side. Its interoperability allows use with Joomla, Drupal, OpenID, OpenERP, Prestashop, LDAP, PeopleSoft and Oracle among others. There are many releases and updated features that include security patches, bug-fix, voice recording and webcam capture.

Chamilo has two separate releases namely LMS and LCMS which are different products with varied capabilities. They also allow for extensions and plugins additions for new functionalities including learning path converter presentations.

Advantages and Drawbacks

The Moodle VS Chamilo battle is exemplified at every level from features to releases and advantages. They are basically learning management systems that help scholars as well as businesses in training activities and organization. While the last Moodle release is just 45 days old, Chamilo released their latest updates 10 days ago. This further shows how determined these two providers are determined to deliver the best e-learning solutions. Both software exhibit strong security measures with stiff authentication needed including usernames and passwords.

This is very important to ensure instances of identity theft are reduced and hackers kept away. Moodle has a substantial advantage in terms of back up community serving an incredible over 70 million users worldwide. It harbors over 7.5 million courses taught by more than 1.2 million teachers. Chamilo has a relatively smaller population but has in recent weeks shown tremendous registrations mainly because of the improved features.

It registered over 700,000 adoptions within 20 months which is a great response considering it was only officially launched in 2010. They also have a strong third world presence to support information sharing and learning. The community sponsors initiatives such as One Laptop Per Child to ensure less privileged also have access to fluid internet connectivity. This gives them a stronger ethnic appeal and balance.

Both Moodle and Chamilo are freeware open source systems, which cancels out to the advantage of users. Chamilo allows its users to use audio recordings and video conferencing in quizzes and also allows for certificate generation. The inclusion of physically disabled persons is a great pro for them. They also include dashboard for statistics, mail inbox and integrate social networks, all which are not available for Moodle.

Moodle is however easy to set up and initiate business training activities. They have been in existence since 2001 and have a large community that is ready to provide any help whenever you are stuck up. The software is customizable, familiar and contents are widely available in large loads. Moodle is unfortunately not open to every user, reporting may present some problems, which is the same case with user management, and it needs some improved level of tech-skills. This is the same for any other open source systems and if used correctly as well as fully, there is great potential for positive results.


Some companies will find either of the two more suitable although Chamilo seems to hold less drawbacks and loopholes. Moodle however has many advantages and experience depth, which enables them to serve better. Without considering any speculation, e-learning systems are bound to have some setbacks which are often as a result of insufficient knowledge in using such packages.

When all the features are exploited to derive optimum efficiency in functionality, there will be numerous benefits enjoyed for users of either platform. With that said, it is tricky to judge the Moodle VS Chamilo contest as both programs are suitable for different organizational needs.

Nicole Lewis is the Lead Author & Editor of MyLMStips. MyLMStips is dedicated to providing the most engaging topics, information, tips and tricks surrounding Moodle®. It's a place where Moodle® users can receive guidance on how to get the most out of it and increase their productivity and progress.