I am a new WPMU subscriber and I have a question about Multi-site networks.

I have set up a multi-site network without any problems. Everything seemed to work fine. One key requirement for my network(s) is for users to be able to use their own domain name. I have read a number of articles about this issue but I am unclear as to the best approach. So I am hoping that if I define my requirements you can give me some direction. I will be using a dedicated server for this but haven't purchased that yet. I am creating niche networks using Multisite and in some cases MarketPress and in some cases MarketPress and BuddyPress. I want just one install of WordPress and all niche networks use that install. So, each niche network would have a primary (parent) site that controls all the themes/plugins, etc and child sites for that niche. Each child site can have its own domain name. The end result is that I may have 20 primary domains, each with child sites, each with its own primary parent site, all running under one install of WordPress. Am I correct in understanding that I could do this with multisite and domain mapping & multi domain plugins or a plugin such as Networks for WordPress. OR, do I need to set this up so each niche network has its own install of WordPress and the domain mapping plugin. Your advice is greatly appreciated. By the way, so far I am very impressed and very happy with WPMU Dev. Thanks!

  • Charlie Pryor
    • The Incredible Code Injector

    Hi bthoom, and welcome to WPMU DEV!

    Let's see if we can get you set up and comfortable with your new Multisite network.

    Firstly, you're looking at a multisite already, and everything is going well. Fantastic.
    Secondly, You want people to be able to sign up, and have their own sites, including access to Buddypress features as well. All of that is built into multisite, as long as you have Buddypress installed already, and you've turned on Registrations.

    You're likely also looking to make a little money from this as well, and you'll want to regulate the network features for complete network control. If that's the case, the Pro Sites plugin would be an excellent tool to help you achieve this goal, since it was designed for that exact purpose.

    Best of all, as far as beginners go, we've got a step-by-step tutorial series set up to learn this plugin, so you'll be familiar with not only its capabilities, but how to utilize them effectively for your goals. Included within that series, is a look into using domain mapping with it, which transitions us into that matter...

    Aside from using Pro Sites, multi-domain and domain mapping is an excellent choice, and it would certainly be able to give you most of the features you're looking for.

    The one I'm not sure of (just from lack of knowledge and experience with it) is whether or not this combination would allow each site on the multisite network to have their own domains alongside having their own sites within sites. I believe multisite with multidomain and domain mapping would allow this, but I can't personally verify it. Hopefully someone will chime in soon and give you the answer you're looking for. I know that setting each niche up in it's own install will work 100%, but it would be way more convenient for a Network administrator to be able to manage and attend all sites within one dashboard.

    Thanks for being a WPMU DEV member.


  • Vaughan
    • Support/SLS MockingJay


    thanks for posting.

    if i understand you correctly, you want a network of sites within a network of sites.

    network site

    network site > site1
    network site > site2

    network site > site1 > site1-a
    network site > site1 > site1-b

    network site > site2 > site2-a
    network site > site2 > site2-a

    if so, then that isn't possible. all sites would be created and controlled via network site.

    domain mapping will certainly allow each site on the network to use it's own domain name though.

    hope this helps.

  • Danny
    • The Incredible Code Injector

    Thanks for the fast response. Then for one multisite install you can only ever have one primary (parent) site. But then you could have 20 domains under that primary site, with each of those 20 having multiple sites under them. All would run off the same set of plugins/themes and would have access based on how ever I set up prosites, membership levels, etc. I will try out that approach as a test. Although I am leaning to separate installs for each niche just to segregate things clearly.

    thanks for your replies. I appreciate it. What is the protocol for awarding points so I can give you each some points.

  • Dev4
    • Champion of Loops

    Hi bthoom,

    You may want to look at Networks for WordPress at http://wordpress.org/plugins/networks-for-wordpress/

    What it does is allow you to set up multiple networks in the same WPMU install
    Each network has its own sites. You can use the same plug ins on each network, or you can leave some out.

    Each network has its own domain name. (but you can use sub-domains for that if you need to. (if you do that you need to use the sub-directory install for your WPMU install.

    There is a bit of learning to do, but it works pretty well with the WPMUDEV plugins (at least those I have tried) ACENU is a staff member here who uses this also.

    I am just getting started and am still working it all out... but it may be what you are looking for if you have some time to spend learning.

    If you need to get something up next week, I would stay with the idea of one install per network.

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