Support » Networking WordPress » Add SSL to existing Sub-Directory Multisite

  • Resolved muntle


    I have to changeover two existing multisites, both using sub-directories, one with four subsites the other with nine, but I do not want to use a plug-in to force the SSL. The SSL Certificate is in place for both, which are on a VPS that I have control of, so there are no set-up issues.

    However, having unsuccessfully browsed the net for the last couple of days, there seems to be very little basic information and/or advice available. The codex, for example, seems to concentrate on starting a new multisite as SSL, rather than how you activate SSL on an existing site without causing issues.

    The process for a single site is really very straightforward: 1. add the certificate; 2. edit the htaccess; 3. edit the wp-config; 4. log-in and change the general settings; 5. use a search/replace plugin to do the bulk of the link work; 6. mop-up the stray links manually. I have have recently successfully changed-over a number of WordPress single-site customers to SSL using this process.

    For a sub-directory multisite, stages 1 to 3 should be identical. Problem is, that that when you get to stage 4, there is no general setting to edit that will change the main site to https – the setting is there, but it is greyed-out and not editable. I can see where the subsites can be edited under the ‘sites’ tab, but that is of little use if the main site is still ‘http’ only, especially where some resources are used across all sites.

    Some articles mention an area within network-admin general settings where you can ‘force’ this, but for the life of me I cannot find it. It is also not clear how stage 5 is achieved on all sites.

    So my questions are:

    a) Where do I edit the main site URL from ‘http’ to ‘https’ in order to be able to log-in as https and carry-out the editing work? and
    b) Once that is achieved, is it possible to use a search/replace plugin to edit the entire database from the network admin area, or is it necessary to do this one subsite at a time?


Viewing 5 replies - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • Please make sure that you have a wildcard SSL certificate. It is required for subdomains.

    a) Simply change site and WordPress URL:
    b) Use Better search replace and Remove HTTP

    Thank You ospiotr, spot on! I hadn’t looked at that particular codex link, because I was looking specifically for multisite references. The first option of adding those two lines in the wp-config resolved the issue. Also worked on a sub-domain multisite I have as well.

    Marking as Resolved

    Good to hear that you have solve this issue. However, I also add my recommendation as Multi Domain Wildcard SSL when you have multiple domains with multiple sub domains. If you want to secure one domain and its sub domains than a wildcard is the best choice but if you want to protect different domains and sub domains than you must go for multi domain wildcard.

    Thanks for the comment, and I absolutely agree, which is why I applied a wildcard ssl certificate to the subdomain multisite I mentioned. It is also important to remember to use subdomains and a wildcard ssl if you want to map other domain names to the subdomains, in which case you must also add all of the other domain names to the certificate before you try any mapping.

    However, you do NOT need a wildcard ssl certificate for a sub-directory multisite, which is what this thread was pertaining to.

Viewing 5 replies - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
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