Wordpress Multisite: Useful Plug-ins and applications
Wordpress is a useful system with a number of possibilities for blogs and websites. It has a constantly evolving community that keeps advancing it's capabilities. One addition to the core functions of a wordpress installation is the Multisite option. To learn how to set up an installation of wordpress multisite on your website check out one of these tutorials:
Adding multisite to wordpress offers support for multiple websites to be hosted on a single wordpress installation. Why would want to use a multisite?
-If you want to create an internal network with multiple websites for a company or a school on one wordpress installation. It gives the ability to host unlimited internal websites which can be used for communication, organizing data, and networking within a group of people.
-If you run a network of blogs you can create a master site where users can create their own accounts and their own pages. You have complete control over user's capabilities and can create different levels of users over your network. This makes user creation and management a simple task. The “Network Admin” is the highest level user and controls all the subsites of the multisite.
-If you want host multiple domains under one dashboard. You can map nearly unlimited domains (Around 1000 and the installation begins to get overloaded) and control them all from one location. This can be very helpful for a personally owned network of sites or for online businesses with different properties that can be hosted on a central location.
There are also specific wordpress plug-ins built specifically for multisite that are very useful when managing a large number of sites.
One of the most useful plug-ins that I have found is called a Site Cloner. This will allow you to instantly clone a site, copying it's theme, images, and content instantly. It can be a massive time saver if you want to create similar sites quickly. A working cloner that I have used can be found here http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/add-cloned-sites-for-wpmu-batch/ . It is free of charge and supports the most current wordpress installation.
It adds an option under the “Site” portion of the multisite menu called “Add Cloned Site”. From this link you have the options to:
Select the template site which will be cloned: Select the user who will become the admin for the new site(s): Batch add multiple sites or add just a single one: Domainmap or just clone the new sites: Copy all images and uploads from template to new blog(s):
and the entire process is completed in a matter of seconds!
Speaking of Domain Mapping, this is another key feature of the wordpress multisite (WPMU). This allows for multiple addresses to be mapped to a single WPMU installation. This plug-in can be found at: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wordpress-mu-domain-mapping/. This is also a free plug-in and allows an admin on the network to set the IP address users need to point their DNS A records at or the domain to point CNAME record at. Upon changing these settings at the websites host you can then have any address be directed to a template in the multisite.
Hopefully you find Multisite and these plug-ins to be useful in your web development. They can be invaluable time savers when used correctly.