Setting up a word press multisite on an existing server with multiple sites

I have a main domain alaskan8a.com with several add-on domains and subdomains installed. Many of the add on or subdomains have their own wordpress install. No problems except I am constantly chasing updates. I want to create a wp multisite and install all new instances in a subdirectory model using the multisite. I am not worried about migrating the existing sites yet - just setting up the new one. Question is can I go forward with my existing server and install the multisite in an add-on domain making it the root for the multisite or does it need to be in public_html directory. Do I need a fresh server install?

  • Andre Foisy

    Hi there @Jim,

    Welcome to the WPMU Dev community, and thank you for contacting our support team with your question.

    I hope you're having a great day! :slight_smile:

    You like playing with several sites, don't you? I love that too! :slight_smile:

    Regarding your interesting questions:

    Many of the add on or subdomains have their own wordpress install. No problems except I am constantly chasing updates.

    This might not be a direct question, but since you're seeking for help I can tell you there's a way to manage several WordPress installations, including updates and more, from a centralized control panel.
    Check out this article from our Blog: Manage Multiple WordPress Sites from One Location with this Free Tool :wink:

    Question is can I go forward with my existing server and install the multisite in an add-on domain making it the root for the multisite or does it need to be in public_html directory.

    You certainly can, if you have a very good, reliable and fast hosting account, though I certainly recommend at least running a VPS for this to run as smoothly as possible.

    Yes, also, It can be installed on a add-on domain, that would be /public_html/addon.com, however keep in mind that if eventually you would want to use Domain Mapping plugin in order to assign domain.names to your subsites, you will need to have a dedicated IP address for your multisites main domain, and this directory /public_html/addon.com will need to be set as the DocumentRoot of your web server.

    All that said, and armed with this knowledge now, it's up to you to decide if you'd prefer to start with a "fresh server install", however it is not necessary.

    Hope that helps, and so not hesitate to post back at any time you need help.

    Best regards,
    Andre

  • Jim

    I am using iwp and that has helped a lot. It has been a godsend but still have to chase updates so I thought a multisite would alleviate the needs for a lot of effort and be easier to manage all of the sites we keep adding.

    You certainly can, if you have a very good, reliable and fast hosting account, though I certainly recommend at least running a VPS for this to run as smoothly as possible.

    Yes, also, It can be installed on a add-on domain, that would be /public_html/addon.com, however keep in mind that if eventually you would want to use Domain Mapping plugin in order to assign domain.names to your subsites, you will need to have a dedicated IP address for your multisites main domain, and this directory /public_html/addon.com will need to be set as the DocumentRoot of your web server.

    Ok on dedicated ip for the add on domain. By document root of my web server, what exactly do you mean. If I install a wp instance on the add on domain and use it for the wp multisite wouldn't it be the document root. Confused.

    Also - don't have high volume on any one site so using a shared plan. No problems so far. If I go to a multisite does that necessitate a VPS and more expense because I am monkeying with a lot of domain stuff or is it just a sound recommendation to be safe? Tx

  • Andre Foisy

    Hello @Jim

    A multisites installation is certainly the easiest way to manage several WordPress sites from a single admin dashboard. :slight_smile:

    About the DocumentRoot, I meant the dedicated IP must be pointed to the root folder of your multisites installation.For example, if you install your multisite on an add-on domain, document root for add-on domains generally fall into /public_html/addondomain.com, but the default DocumentRoot is /public_html/ so in that case you will need to specify your host to assign the dedicated IP to that specific document root /public_html/mymusiteishere.com.

    I hope it's clearer now :slight_smile:

    Cheers!
    Andre

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