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[resolved] WordPress multisite to connect subdomains and posts? (25 posts)

  1. assassinsat
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    I am making a media news and reviews site using wordpress. It will contain news on books, movies and tv shows, games etc. Now I plan to make 4 subdomains for the 4 topics like tv.mydomain.com, games.mydomain.com etc. I want all those posts in separate subdomains to appear in http://www.mydomain.com homepage. I decided to use wordpress multisite for this task. but then i saw this on wordpress creating a network codex

    "The sites in a multisite network are separate, very like the separate blogs at WordPress.com. They are not interconnected like things in other kinds of networks (even though plugins can create various kinds of interconnections between the sites). If you plan on creating sites that are strongly interconnected, that share data, or share users, then a multisite network might not be the best solution."

    This is what I need from my sites. the main domain http://www.mydomain.com will be just be showing all my recent posts of all my subdomains. It will also host some pages common across my site such as about me, contact me, privacy policy etc. The individual posts will be in my subdomains. The layout and theme in all subdomains will be the same. Each subdomain will have its own news sections, reviews sections etc. Users signing up to my site should be able to access all of my site with the same account.

    Is this not possible with wordpress multisite? Is there a better alternative to do this using wordpress?

    Thanks

  2. cinghaman
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    Yes it is possible using wordpress multisite

    For extracting the different posts from sub-domain on your homepage you can use a plugin called auto blog (which allows u to setup a category feed from different sub sites )

    Secondly regarding using same account to access the sites, did u try installing buddypress on top of ur wordpress multisite, as it works like a social network and allows user to access your website.
    and you can sync the user created on buddypress registration page to auto register for wordpress user.

    you should explore these two options and it should help.

  3. Do NOT use anything that pulls RSS, you will crash your site.

    Please look up the plugin WordPress MU Sitewide Tags Pages. Yeah, I know. Weird name, but it will aggregate your posts to your main site. BuddyPress also does that in its own way, and both will work with your SEO.

    If you just copy posts over with an auto blogger, you will hurt your search rankings.

    The layout and all that is easy, it's just your theme. I would hard code things into the theme if you want them the same for all sites.

  4. cinghaman
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    I know it is bad for SEO (i am using it on a pvt network :) ) , but just to add it did not crash my sites, i had to use them for very specific purpose and almost 7 sub sites pull the feed from my main site

  5. Robin, please don't do it. I speak from experience, you're causing loop backs, and it is a very, very, very, bad idea. You're causing WP to run a series of commands on itself over and over, and it WILL slow your site down and crash it. It's like if you had to ask your mom every single time you wanted to pick up a cup from the table, and again when you wanted to put it down.

    Please. Do. Not. Do. This.

  6. just to add it did not crash my sites, i had to use them for very specific purpose and almost 7 sub sites pull the feed from my main site

    And if you do this on networks with any amount of sites it WILL eventually crash, Just because it works on a small network does not mean it's good advice for all.

    We are writing from the place of experience here, over multiple clients and situations.

    It;s a beautifully disastrous slow motion train wreck to watch, but it still does happen. :)

  7. ALso to answer the OP

    This is what I need from my sites. the main domain http://www.mydomain.com will be just be showing all my recent posts of all my subdomains. It will also host some pages common across my site such as about me, contact me, privacy policy etc. The individual posts will be in my subdomains. The layout and theme in all subdomains will be the same. Each subdomain will have its own news sections, reviews sections etc. Users signing up to my site should be able to access all of my site with the same account.

    Is this not possible with wordpress multisite? Is there a better alternative to do this using wordpress?

    It is possible, but again - multisite is probably not the best solution. Why are you not just using category pages?

  8. John
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    You may want to break down your requirements to their fundamentals. You want to have separate domains, but what is driving that decision? Is it because you want organization and structure or because you want to partition the interaction?

    Multisite creates distinct sites/blogs that share a common infrastructure of available plugins and users (NOT members). Each site would have to be managed and configured separately, with potentially separate themes, settings, and members. There are ways using plugins and hacks to massage it into sharing members, replicating configurations, etc..., but it is not the purpose for which it was designed and limits your ability to implement changes. Note that these are just a few significant problems to deal with before you even get to the question of "how can i aggregate posts and share common pages?"

    As Andrea suggests, a single site with categories for your different media types would allow content segregation if necessary, aggregation at the entry page by default, and common membership, themes, configuration, and pages (because it is one site).

    Is there something about your requirements that wouldn't be satisfied in this model?

  9. assassinsat
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    Thanks for all the replies.

    Can you tell me what the difference is between a user and a member?

    I did think of using categorised posts. but when using that, if i understand correctly, every page will have the same template will it not? So that if I add a advertisement widget to the post sidebar it will be applied to all posts in every category? I don't want that. Also i need separate homepages for each category and need to add featured posts for each category's homepage. I don't know of a way to do that using categorised posts. I'm still a wordpress novice. So all help is appreciated.

    Thanks

  10. John
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    A WordPress install has a User table in the database. On multisite installs it is shared/common between all sites. However each site still has its own membership roles (subscriber, contributor, author, editor, admin). So if I become a member of Blog A, I have an entry in the user table, and that same account could be given privileges on Blog B, but by default, Blog B does not grant me privileges.

    With category archives, you have separate pages for each category and can customize the display, even on a category by category basis, although it would require customizing the category archive templates.

    You can find out more info here.

  11. So that if I add a advertisement widget to the post sidebar it will be applied to all posts in every category?

    Use the Widget Logic to control what widgets are shown on which pages.

    John is correct - everything else you want is a category template customization. This is not a use case for multisite.

    Sure, you CAN use multisite for this, but it;s the long a brute-force way around it.

  12. assassinsat
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    right. I guess there is no use in making several subdomains. But now I have several more questions.

    Each site would have to be managed and configured separately, with potentially separate themes

    I might want to use different themes for one or two categories. what way can this be achieved with a single site installation?

    What is widget logic?

    Can I make posts from certain categories not appear in the homepage?

    How can I have a separate homepage for each category? Can I do this by making a template for separate categories? at least thats what I understood by reading WordPress template hierachy codex.

    Finally what are the pros of using multisite in this case? is there none at all?

    Thanks

  13. John
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    It might be splitting hairs but a "theme" is a set of styles and functions that define how your site works. By definition, your site has one and only one theme. If you want some pages on your site to have a different layout and look & feel, you can do that with custom page templates.

    Widget Logic is a plugin: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/widget-logic/

    You can exclude posts in specific categories from appearing by modifying the default page template. Check here for a description of the process.

    Every category will have its own category archive page automatically. When you create custom category page templates it will automatically use the right one for each category, assuming you named them correctly.

    In your case, I think the only Pro of Multi-site is that it makes it easy to enforce separation of content and layout, but it makes everything else harder. Multi-site is intended for people who want to have multiple separate blogs that are ignorant of each other but still only manage one install.

    Single-site is designed to treat all content as though it were existing in a single-familiy home. Multisite is to treat everything as though they are separate apartments in an apartment building. You want to have the best of both worlds (and there is nothing wrong with that) so my advice is that it is much easier to go through the work of painting some of the rooms in your house a different color and create some customization than it is to knock out the walls of the apartment building and rewire everything.

  14. jewlzmcq
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    I am wanting to do the same thing. I have MU because each subdomain will have different themes, plugins, and tools specific to that user group and the main site has much more extensive customization. However each subdomain is specific to a category on the main site so I'm trying to get the posts from the subdomain to also show under that category on the main site. I tried WordPress MU Sitewide Tags Pages plugin but it does not work with my customized child theme for the main site. It doesn't break anything, It just doesn't do anything and when I try to save the settings for that plugin, they do not save. I've posted the issue on the plugin page but I'm pretty sure I'm going to have to find another way to get the posts from the subdomains onto the main site.
    There are too many posts to Share each one myself and I want to heed your advice about avoiding rss feeds - as my network is pretty heavy already.
    Any other tips for accomplishing this task?

  15. jewlzmcq - Make your own topic, please :)

  16. assassinsat
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    it is much easier to go through the work of painting some of the rooms in your house a different color and create some customization than it is to knock out the walls of the apartment building and rewire everything

    True enough :)

    while I'm here can you tell me what are the negative aspects of MU. does it slow the site down? is it bad from a SEO perspective? I assumed that having subdomains would be a positive SEO decision.

    And what is the problem of using MU. is it the hardness to manage each subdomain individually? Isn't that the same thing I'm doing if I make custom page templates? modifying each category separately?

  17. John
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    I use MU and love it. But my use-case is that I need to have thousands of separate sites that are individually controlled and managed while only having to maintain one single install. It doesn't take a lot of horsepower to run it, but if you are not self-hosting, your hosting provider may have restrictions against running MU because in a way it turns you into a solution provider (i.e. competition) and it does use more resources as you add more blogs. However a single-site install that has tons of traffic, plugins, etc... will use more than a low utilization multi-site.

    My comments that MU would be hard is that for your needs it seemed like you would be better served with single-site install and just modifying page templates than to use a multi-site install and try to get the separate blogs to share content, members, themes, theme options, plugins, plugin options, blog settings, etc....

  18. assassinsat
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    right. final question then. In case I have to make these separate categories into sites of their own later, can i make them subdomains that run using multisite?

  19. John
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    You can convert your single-install to a multi-site install later. When you do that, you configure whether you will use subdomains or subfolders for the additional sites (it is either/or not both). You would have to export content from your main site to each subsite. And, if you want to keep membership and other options synchronized between sites, find plugins that allow you to fulfill those kinds of functions.

  20. assassinsat
    Member
    Posted 2 years ago #

    Ok thanks guys. I believe thats all I need to know for the moment. Thanks a lot.

  21. RonStrilaeff
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    This is a very interesting discussion. Where can I find more (not sure what to search for except "Do I really need multisite?")

  22. http://halfelf.org/2011/dont-use-wordpress-multisite/ perhaps?

    Don't let the title scare you ;) But also don't post in resolved topics, we often ignore them.

  23. icynose
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    May be this plugin can help?

    http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/threewp-broadcast/

    It broadcasts posts from a blog to another, with custom contents, taxonomies, using a child / parent linkage to keep all updated.

  24. adityabajaj
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Hello, a lot of discussion has happened but it is difficult to summarize..what?
    I have the same problem. I have a site and want to categorize on products for example, tv.sitename.com, mobile.sitename.com thinking that it would be helpful for SEO and that it would give users a feeling of dedicated subsite for a product.

    I have a question and after reading this post, i got one more question:
    1. How can I keep the same settings reused everywhere in the subsites. When I change the theme of main site, it should apply to all the internal sites. If I change a plugin setting for one site (e.g. analytics plugin), it should apply throughout the subsites too. Is it possible?

    2. Would it be a (very) bad idea?

    Thanks
    aditya

  25. csweths
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    @assassinsat : your idea of having "the main domain http://www.mydomain.com will be just be showing all my recent posts of all my subdomains" is a good idea for ranking well in the niches. In this way you can work on ranking on your niche sites as well as since all your sub-sites will be linked to a common home page/landing page, it will give you the advantage of owning a huge directory of multi-niches.

    So your thought process of have a common landing page with links to different niche sites is a great idea. I am working on similar site right now. You can have hyperlinks to dropdown menus for different niches on your landing page. For SEO purpose you will need to show that your landing page is having some activity and that can be achieved by the plugins suggested in this post. Let know your experiences, since I see this post is nearly 8 months old.

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