While reading the TimeLine at Mastodon today I have read that a new version of Pleroma has been released some days ago.
So I decided to give it a try and check how they compare, I must admit I am no expert in neither of them.
- Ruby on Rails
Of course, both need Nginx in front of them, and need SSL certificate.
They both uses ActivityPub to communicate with other instances, therefore they are compatible and iteroperable, that means you can create an account in either of them and interact with people in the other with no differences.
Pleroma has two frontends, one is its own look, and the other is Mastodon one, as you can see below.
And below this like you can see a Mastodon instance.
Pleroma has lower system requirements, a lot lower, I have one instance of each of them, both has just one accout. Pleroma is running in a 1GByte RAM Linode, and the Mastodon is running in a 2GByte RAM Linode, alongside with Mastodon you have this static site and Apache Running for no-traffic WordPress blog.
Let's see htop running in the Pleroma server.
And now Mastodon htop running in the Mastodon server.
As I am new to both of them, I cannot write too much about this topic, I can see that it is easier to change the limit of chars in Pleroma than in Mastodon, I have read that is easier for moderators to work with Mastodon tools, as it offers more granular options, before Pleroma 2.0 you needed to edit config files in order to change its options, now the options are saved to the Database (asked when installing it) so, you can configure from the web interface.
Both uses activitypub, so they work the same in this area, you can federate them with each other, I really do not see the difference, since Pleroma 2.0 it does not support GNU Social anymore and only works with ActivityPub.
I use Toot! on my iPad and the Chrome on my Android, of course Chrome works, it is just a server, and Toot! from iOS is totally compatible with Pleroma, as you may see from the images below, there is no difference, just the limit of characters, with my Pleroma instance I have 5.000 while with my Mastodon one, just 500 (Only a configuration thing).
<figcaption>Mastodon on iOS Toot!</figcaption>
<figcaption>Pleroma on iOS Toot!</figcaption>
I think, that if you are going to run an instance just for you, Pleroma is a better option, if you are going to run a big instance for lots of people maybe Mastodon is better as it has more options to play with.