Support » Alpha/Beta/RC » WP 3.0 Network (multi-site) with sites outside base directory?

  • Resolved adamnorwood


    I’ve been testing out WP 3.0 beta1’s Network feature (aka multi-sites), which is great and definitely works as advertised as far as I’ve found!

    I know this would likely be considered non-standard usage, but I’m wondering if it’s possible to use this feature to create sites that exist outside of the /wp/ base directory’s hierarchy. In other words, is the following directory structure possible?:

    • (actual WP install dir)
    • (a child WP site)
    • (2nd child site)

    I’ve been successfully using the Virtual Multiblog tool for the past couple of years to do exactly that, but would love a better built-in ‘core’ option. I’ve come tantalizingly close using .htaccess rewrites and fiddling with the Network settings, but I gather this is a use case that’s not really intended? Anyone know if this is patently a BAD IDEA™ that I shouldn’t pursue further? (I haven’t tested Virtual Multiblog with WP 3.0 yet, I hope it still works…!)

    FWIW, the ‘Path’ setting under Super Admin > Sites > Edit Site lets you specify a path that’s outside the WordPress install directory, but I’m not sure what that means exactly (the WP admin screen doesn’t indicate that there’s anything wrong with doing that — no error messages — but I’ve yet to get it to work like I’ve described above).

    Thanks much for any insight!

Viewing 5 replies - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • Andrea Rennick


    Customer Care at Copyblogger Media and Studiopress

    Nope, won’t work that way with multi site.

    I’m pretty sure you could do this with mod_rewrite in apache to proxy the content to somewhere else. I’m playing with this now…

    Thanks for the reply, Andrea! I’d figured this wasn’t an out-of-the-box ability. I don’t have a strong reason to change what I’m currently doing assuming that Virtual Multiblog continues to work on the 3.0 branch (the VMB developer reports that it should be good to go), I was just hoping to find a simpler hack-free way of doing this.

    Thanks for looking into it, too, staze. I came pretty close using mod_rewrite, but I haven’t taken a hard look into WP 3.0’s internals to figure out where exactly the catch is. If you figure it out, I’d love to know!

    (from the VMB developer)

    Just to confirm — Yes Virtual Multiblog works just fine in testing with the latest 3.0 (RC1). In fact, VMB is designed to be *extremely* stable. In the entire time I’ve been working on VMB, there has been exactly ONE release of WP that could break it, and that was WP 2.6 which added the ability to move the wp-content directory. It’s always worth double-checking of course, but breaking VMB would require a significant change in the basic infrastructure of WordPress.

    Essentially, all VMB does is pass a different wp-config.php file depending on what URL is pulling it up. WordPress takes that config and uses it normally from there.

    The main aspects of VMB that differ from WP 3.0/MU are

    1) VMB creates a completely separate install of WP, with none of the integrated “Network” stuff in the back end. For some applications this is a good thing. For others, not so much.

    2) VMB has a handful of other features, such as the “always on” plugins. Not only MU plugins, but any regular old WP plugin can be set to “always on”, which WP 3.0/MU can’t do.

    3) As pointed out, VMB can handle different domains, and can do subdirectories in ways WP 3.0 still can’t. No doubt these features will advance in WP down the road.

    Thanks, strider72, for the clarification. I’ve not run into problems yet with VMB, and have been using it happily for the past couple of years so I’m not especially worried about the transition to WP 3.0. It’s a great system if the new built-in Network feature isn’t quite what you need!

    I’m going to mark this thread as resolved, since I got the answers I need for now.

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