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WordPress Multi Site Hosting

WordPress, the most prolific and widely used Content management system, simply put, “Website Builder” has its own way of dealing with users. Not only do the users acclaim WordPress because of its easy to use functionality, but the plethora of customizable features and modules allow users to use this CMS to build almost any type of web presence.

However, keeping in mind the beneficial opportunity of owning multiple websites, WordPress provides user this facility as well, all through its single or one- time install. This new feature or in otherwords ability is called asWordPress multi site hosting.

What is WordPress Multisite Hosting?

By the word multisite you can definitely understand that it’s about having more than one website. However, to further explain the usage of WordPress Multisite hosting, as an analogy consider this: A user in order to increase the reach and visibility opts for building more than one blog or a website. In a conventional way, for each of that website he would need a separate PHP framework. Although the hosting would entertain users with that too, but WordPress inhibits the hassle and allows users to host as many domains they want on a single PHP platform.

This is what a WordPress multi site hosting is. Take WordPress.com as a fully functional example of this. This ability came out with WordPress 3.0 install and not only does it help users host multiple WP website but also enables them to manage the content on these pages from a single panel. Through the advanced super admin panel of WordPress multi site hosting users can edit, customize, and add content in which ever hosted domain they want.

Captivating Features of WordPress Multisite Hosting

With WordPress Multisite Hosting, you will get some enthralling features and benefits that will help you greatly in numerous aspects. Here, we present a few advantages offered by WordPress Multisite hosting.

  •  Instant Access to Multiple Blogs

You can have access to multiple blogs with extreme ease and convenience with WordPress MU. You just need to set and remember a single username and password that takes you through all the WordPress sites admin panels. You just need to click on the “My Sites” drop down menu located on the WP admin bar to gain access to all your WP sites.

  • Shared or Mutual Themes

WordPress MU allows you to use uniform theme across all your sites by turning them into Network Enabled mode or you can also use different themes for different WP sites. You can easily develop quite different websites using different themes as every site will be running its separate own theme.

  • Shared or Mutual Plugins

This is another advantage of using WordPress MU as you can simply distribute your plugins across all your sites and blogs right away. You can also opt to install these plugins individually to multiple sites as required.

The best part of this feature is when you upgrade any plugin using the Network Admin Dashboard, the updated version is shared with all the sites that saves a lot of your time. 

  • Shared Users

Incase of using multiple WP installs, the most frustrating task is to create duplicate users across each site. However, this hassle has been removed with the advent of WordPress Multisite as it offers an organized and centralized set of users that manages the permission of access to each site for different users.

  • Advanced Configurations and Settings

WordPress MU offers you an access to several advanced configurations and settings that allow you to carry out quick modifications to each of your site. You can manage almost everything related to all your sites from one single place. Although it’s a bit complicated but yet it’s a powerful tool to organize and manage your blogs.

  • Single Upgrade for All Sites

Forget those times when you were required to upgrade your multiple WordPress installs separately consuming a lot of time. With WordPress Multisite, you just need to upgrade your WordPress once. The upgrading effect will run across all your sites, eradicating the annoying process of upgrading all the sites separately.

Setting up a WordPress Multisite MU

It’s a piece of a pie! Just a few copy-pasting of code here and there in your Wp-config.php file and you are good to go.

  • Firstly, here is a code that you need to place beneath the /* That’s all, stop editing! Happy blogging. */ line in your Wp-config.php file.

/* Enable Multisite */

define(‘WP_ALLOW_MULTISITE’, true);

  • Now if you have done that, save it and go to Tools > Network Setup. Here you can decide whether you want sub-domains for your URLs or subdirectories.
  • Once done, now you only have to make a final round of updates.
  • You need to make a blog.dir folder in your wp-content directory and make it writeable.

Now add the below given code into your Wp-confif.php file. You would also need to change wpms-demo.com into the URL of your main site.

  1. /*
  2. RewriteEngine On
  3. RewriteBase
  4. RewriteRule ^index\.php$ – [L]
  5. # uploaded files
  6. RewriteRule ^files/(.+) wp-includes/ms-files.php?file=$1 [L]
  7. RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -f [OR]
  8. RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -d
  9. RewriteRule ^ – [L]
  10. RewriteRule . index.php [L]

Lastly, replace your .htacess file code with the following one:

  1. /*
  2. define(‘MULTISITE’, true);
  3. define(‘SUBDOMAIN_INSTALL’, true);
  4. $base = ‘/’;
  5. define(‘DOMAIN_CURRENT_SITE’, ‘wpms-demo.com’);
  6. define(‘PATH_CURRENT_SITE’, ‘/’);
  7. define(‘SITE_ID_CURRENT_SITE’, 1);
  8. define(‘BLOG_ID_CURRENT_SITE’, 1);

This is it then, now you will have access to MY SITES menu from the top of your admin bar.  Now you can add new sites into your single WP install.

Special Scenarios When WordPress Multisite is Least Recommended

  • If you want to post in categories: If you are going to use WordPress multisite hosting just so have a special site to post from and then the post can land into a special site, then don’t that. WordPress already has that features built-in. It’s called “categories”. You can further tweak the URLs if you want the ‘category’ part to be removed from there, for this we would advise you to use custom post types.
  • If you want your sites to be 100% same:  Now this is arguable, but if you want your multisite to have the exact same theme and feel except the content-then don’t use Multisite. Believe me! What’s the use of multisite when you want them to be exactly same? Alternatively, for this you can again play with ‘categories’, ‘tags’ and ‘CPTs’ because changing settings and themes of each site is a pain.
  • Just for that special ‘one’ thing: if you just want to get a thing or two enabled on your website, take ‘video section’ as an example then WordPress multisite hosting is not the only option that can let you have it. Look out for such specific modules with that particular function (WP has a thriving community of third party developers) or you can also convert your concepts using Custom Post types.
  • If you think visitors will not notice they are on a network: Arguably, yes there are ways around it, but it’s a hellish job to separate user databases. And Secondly for separate data bases there is a security risk as well. Further, if you still manage to get work around, you’ll be spending more time in maintain them then updating your website.
  • To host small sites of your clients: Although, it will be a lot easy for you to manage the site from one place, but opting WordPress multisite hosting for this purpose has cons, which in fact are way many. Although you manage it but your clients domain is their own responsibility. Imagine what will happen to your other sites if your client does something weird and spikes the traffic up to a 600%. So don’t do it. “Make your client own what’s their own”.
  • To add same post on every site: Isn’t this obvious! This is what spammers do people. And plus, not only will this dilute your content, but Google will also downgrade your website. Now, if this is what your business strategy tells you to do, then there are workarounds to it too. What I’ll do is to make each site a child domain and leave a link to the original (parent) content page on them.
  • If your users want to install plug-ins:  you need to know that WordPress multi site hosting lets you create sub-admins besides a single super admin. Now this is good, but if your users want sub-admins to install plug-ins they cannot do that on a WordPress multisite hosting, why because it’s a single WP install, any plug-in installed will impact on all the sites.  There are alternatives to that as well but you need to see that they don’t have such in depth accesses.

Over to you

If you aren’t that technical and want someone to take care of things on your behalf, then we suggest you to check options like WP Engine and Cloudways who are well-known for keeping things operable for your WordPress website.

We hope our today’s post would really help you understand when and when not is it required to get on to WordPress multi site hosting.  You can now easily install WordPress Multisite after reading this post and avail the great benefits offered by WordPress MU. If you feel like we have missed out a detail or two, feel free to drop your suggestions in the comments below.

 

Haris Mumtaz [Rocker]

Haris is a business graduate with a creative set of mind. His interest in technology and computers keeps him engaged in exploring new inventions and developments. He loves sharing his knowledge with the world via blogs and articles. Together with his business skills and technological knowledge, he is keen to head towards a new level of success.

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  • http://harlansherman.wordpress.com/ Harlan Sherman

    WordPress platforms is extremely easy-to-use and versatile yet it’s web host and control becomes agonizing process with the development of your website.

  • Atif Amin

    thts pretty good functionality provided by WP