Support » Plugin: WordPress MU Domain Mapping » Is there a way to switch primary vs. secondary domain?

  • So, initially I had only a single domain hosted (GoDaddy, if it helps later). I then enabled MultiSite and installed WordPress MU Domain Mapping. After resolving not having secondary site listed in Hosted Domains, thus getting Pageok failure, everything now works. However, in considering things, I’m leaning toward the notion that the current secondary domain should actually be the Primary domain.

    So, my question is: what all would I need to go about doing in order to switch things around this way? What considerations might there be?

    Currently, it’s set up as (Primary) and (secondary; mapped to via plugin)

    What I’d like to do, if it’s possible with how WP works, would be to flip that and have be Primary and have be secondary (and map that to via plugin).

    So, what all do I need to do to go about setting things up this way?

    I hope that all made sense…

    I guess my biggest worry is about the switching of Domain2 to Root and Domain 1 to subfolder. Is this a problem in any way? Will any files have to get manually moved around an/or edited? Or are the folders not literal folders, but virtual folders, and it’s merely a matter of changing a few WordPress parameters (and possibly which domain is listed as the primary “hosted” domain via my web host GoDaddy), and WordPress will take care of the reast?

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  • So, I’m looking at the Network Admin –> Settings –> Network Setup page.

    In Step 1, where it tells me what to add to the wp-config.php file.

    I’m assuming I need to edit:

    define(‘DOMAIN_CURRENT_SITE’, ‘’);

    to instead read –>

    define(‘DOMAIN_CURRENT_SITE’, ‘’);

    In Step 2, where it tells me to edit .htaccess, I don’t see anything domain name specific. So assume I can leave .htaccess as-is.

    Where do I switch the primary domain name of the network? IS it just in that wp-config.php file, or is there a specific screen in the admin area somewhere that I have to edit it as well? For some reason, I thought there was, but now I can’t seem to find one, as I’m poking around.

    In the Sites admin area there are two entries. One with path ‘/’ the other with path ‘/Domain2/’. ‘/’ only lists the options:

    Edit | Dashboard | Visit

    On clicking ‘Edit’, it shows the Siteurl parameter as ‘’, listed in blue background an NOT editable.

    Whereas ‘/Domain2/’ offers:

    Edit | Dashboard | Deactivate | Archive | Spam | Delete | Visit

    When clicking ‘Edit’, it shows

    Path: ‘/Domain2/’

    Will updating wp-config.php as noted above change how these two paths are treated? Do I need to set them both to ‘/’ before switching things around and then once the primary domain is changed in wp-config.php change Domain1’s path from ‘/’ to ‘/Domain1/’? Or will WP take care of switching these around automatically?

    Also, when I go to the admin pages for the individual sites, Domain 2 offers the menu option for Domain Mapping in the Tools area. Domain 1 does not offer that option in the Tools area. After updating wp-config.php to point to Domain2 as primary, will this flip and Domain 2 will no longer have access to Domain Mapping option in the Tools area and Domain1 will now gain access to Domain Mapping option in the Tools area? Or will some other change(s) be required?

    In my web host GoDaddy’s Hosted Domains, I also see that there is a field “Status” and Domain1 is listed as “Setup” & “Primary”, whereas Domain2 is listed simply as “Setup.” Would I also need to change this setup to have Doamin 2 listed as “Primary” and Domain 1 merely listed as “Setup”? In addition to the wp-config.php?

    Betwixt the various changes listed above, will that get it done, or will there be other hidden things that need to get updated too and the sites might break in the interim?

    I’m hoping I’ve got a handle on it & it’s not too heinous. If so, in what order do I need to proceed? I assume it’ll take up to 24h for the Hosted Domains to switch “primary” status(es). If I change the other statuses & parameters in WP will it break things until the Hosted Domain ssettings get updated or will WP handle the parameter changes gracefully?

    Currently my two domains are both set with A Record pointing to my server IP & to the “root.” So, I’m hoping that in changing the various WP parameters things will more-or-less just “work” and the Hosted Domains “primary” status is something of a moot point? That is, if both domains point to ‘/’ and the ‘paths’/’folders’ are all handled virtually via the WP software rather than as a hard ‘flat file’ directory system?

    Just trying to figure out how easy it is to flip things around, or if a bunch of other manual changes will need to be made, say in various database tables, etc., etc.?

    Just don’t know how WP works well enough to know how much headache I’m getting myself into, or if it’s pretty painless as long as you change the right couple parameters?

    Or would all the above simply end up with the Domain1’s contents showing up under Domain 2’s TLD, which wouldn’t be right? That is would the CONTENTS of Domain 1 still be considered the “primary” contents and displayed at root, despite all the other changing around of parameters?

    If so, it seems like thee need to be some systematic method of which of the ‘existing’ sites IN WORDPRESS is to be considered the “Master” site and all the rest of which should be considered secondaries? IF that makes sense.

    Perhaps this case is a statistical outlier, but it can’t be completely unprecedented. I’m sure someone’s wanted to do something similar before?

    So, any thoughts? Am I on the right track, or do I still have more WP internal mechanics to wrap my brain around?

    Plugin Author Ron Rennick


    The easiest way to switch is export the content from both sites, create a new installation and import.

    Switching the domain of the main site is technically possibly but should only be attempted by folks with a thorough understanding of how multisite works.

Viewing 2 replies - 1 through 2 (of 2 total)
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