Best Way To Configure and Install Multisite, Multi-Domain, Domain Mapping

After trying a few installations of multi-domains, multisite, domain mapping, I'm really confused as to how these all work/what's the best way to use them.

I would therefore would like to start from scratch and need help figuring out how to best set up my sites...

---------Workflow---------

The idea here is to have a site (maindomain.com) where people signup and create blogs on different domains (other.com,other2.com,other3.com, etc.)

Currently I have wordpress installed on all domains (maindomain.com, other.com, other2.com,etc.)

That being said...

It is my understanding that with multi-domain plugin I can have clients create subsites on my different domains (other.com, other2.com,etc.).

That being said, should my other domains be addon domains, parked domains, or should they have their own cPanel?

Do I need to install the plugin "Networks for Wordpress" in order to keep my current wordpres installations on my 'other' domains?

--------- What I've already tried -----------

I initially had my other domains as addon domains and was able to create subsites. Problem as domain mapping wasn't working and I was getting DNS error messages although I was still able to create subsites across all sites.

I then switched to parked domains (fresh install) and I could create subsites, but I couldn't access their dashboards even as a super admin. When I tried to access the parked domains (e.g. other.com) I would get redirected to either maindomain.com or to the register page rather than seeing the content of the site.

I'm lost :disappointed:

I will appreciate any guidance

Thank you

  • Jack Kitterhing
    • Code Norris

    Hi there @jorgitoz

    I hope you are well today, do you need domain mapping? Will you be mapping domains to sub domains of customers/clients? If not you can leave that plugin out :slight_smile:

    Then with Multi-Domains, what you should have is 1 mulitsite network, install multi-domains on that following the usage instructions very closely for the install, then once that is installed, you would then point your other domains that you want people to be able to create sub domains to, to your install, but these other domains shouldn't have WordPress installed as that will cause an error.

    Does that make sense? :slight_smile:

    Thank you!

    Kind Regards
    Jack.

  • jorgitoz
    • Flash Drive

    I follow so far...

    I will be mapping domains to subdomains... now for example, if I have maindomain.com and a few otherdomains.com

    What would happen if I type in otherdomain.com into my browser?

    Currently on a couple it takes me to either maindomain.com or with others to the registration page at maindomain.com/wp-signup.php

  • jorgitoz
    • Flash Drive

    Ok so just an update... now that I have a better understanding and to help anyone in a similar situation...

    Here are the different ways to set up networks...

    ************ 1 NETWORK ***************

    ---------- DOMAIN MAPPING ONLY --------------

    Suppose you have a site RealEstate.com and want to offer subsites to clients which would be subsite1.realestate.com, subsite2.realestate.com, etc.

    What domain mapping allows you to do is have Realtor Joe create a site and map his domain so rather than having a site called realtorjoe.realestate.com it would be just realtorjoe.com

    In other words, realtorjoe.com points to realtorjoe.realestate.com...

    ----------- MULTI-DOMAIN ONLY ----------------

    With multi-domain you could expand your network so that you can have different domains within the same network to get more specific or create different niches...

    For example, rather than having just realestate.com, you can have

    realestate.com
    apartments.com
    rentals.com
    houses.com
    condos.com

    Everything is run through one domain. You can choose whichever, though in this example realestate.com would make more sense

    That being said, a cilent would visit realestate.com and create a blog, but now he/she has the option to create the blog under any of the domains listed above...

    So realtorjoe could have a site a realtorjoe.realestate.com

    or

    realtorjoe.apartments.com if he does rentals

    or

    realtorjoe.houses.com if he focuses on houses

    Etc.

    All from one multisite install of realestate.com

    ---------- Multi-domain + Domain Mapping ------------

    Domain mapping takes multi-domain to a whole new level. Following the examples above, Realtor Joe could now have his own domains to point to the different sites...

    So he could have for example ApartmentJoe.com, HousesJoe.com, RentalsJoe.com

    These would point to their respective subsites on your network...

    ApartementJoe.com -> realtorjoe.apartments.com
    HousesJoe.com -> realtorjoe.houses.com
    RentalsJoe.com -> realtorjoe.rentals.com

    etc.

    ************ 2 or MORE NETWORKS ******************

    This would be basically the same as above with one main difference... Each of your domains can be its own network...

    That mean that users don't have to visit realestate.com to create a site on the other networks... they can go straight to apartments.com or rentals.com and get a blog there...

    and you can have subsites within those...

    So You can have on one level

    REALESTATE.COM
    apartments.com
    rentals.com
    houses.com

    But apartments.com, rentals.com and houses.com are networks themselves so on a second level you can have a network that looks like

    REALESTATE.COM
    Apartments.com
    ArizonaApartments.com
    CaliforniaApartments.com
    FloridaApartments.com
    Rentals.com
    ArizonaRentals.com
    CaliforniaRentals.com
    FloridaRentals.com

    With Networks within a Network you don't really need the Multi-Domains plugin...

    I tried all these different installs, and found it a bit hard to get ProSites to work with Networks within a Network...

    I tried with Networks+, Networks for WordPress Plugin, but didn't really have any luck...

    In my case I want to separate networks because they will be different languages and found it would probably make my life 10 times easier if I have two separate networks and use the multi-domains + domain mapping setup.

    Just thought I'd share since I spent nearly a week trying to figure out how all this works...

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