When it comes to making a site, surely one will go for the best known options like Wordpress, Joomla or even Blogger.
Of the above options, except Joomla, the rest can be used on a free host from Wordpress and Google respectively, and except Blogger, the rest can be installed on our own server.
But what if you want to build a blog on your own server, but you do not want to install heavy software like WordPress and Joomla, because either you pay for a shared host server and can't perform well on such heavy applications or you want something simple, light and definitely very fast. The following options are for you. Below are some of the best (according to user reviews) blogs, but you can see more here.
Movable Type comes in two options, free and paid. It's written in Perl, so if you're looking for a CMS written in php, then the Movable Type is not for you. Movable Type has an active community.
Habari is a modern application that will surely cover all tastes. It has frequent updates, while it still does not have many plugins and themes.
Snews is one of the so-called "light" CMS, since virtually the whole application is written in one file. It's fast and simple to use. The bad thing is that it is not refreshed quite often, it is almost as if it is abandoned.
Concrete5 is one of the best choices as a WordPress replacement, while a package comes with some useful options, such as sitemap creation, statistics, support for Youtube videos, and more.
Wolf CMS is written in Ruby on Rails. Its main purpose is the creation of small sites and blogs.
PyroCMS is still an ideal choice as a replacement for WordPress. It has great community support, which means many options on topics and plugins.
Nibbleblog is a software that does not require a SQL database because it stores the articles and pages in -xml- files. It comes with video articles support, allowing it to post "simple" articles or video articles. It has many options also for SEO while it also accepts plugins. It also supports both categories and tags for articles.
HTMLy is another software that stores its articles and pages in files instead of a database. It's fast and simple to use, while it only allows tags in the articles. It also supports multiple users, automatically previewing the article when writing it, sort articles based on the date and more. For both HTMLy and Nibbleblog, I've written WordPress converters to move your old blog to one of these softwares.
These are some of the free CMS I've picked up. Definitely there are infinite and perhaps much better choices, but it is up to you to choose the most suited to your needs.