A Useful Guide To Easily Set Up a WordPress Multinetwork

Before we go to the technicalities involved to setup WordPress multi-network, let us first try to know what a WP multi-network actually is.

What Exactly Is A WordPress MultiNetwork?

WordPress Multinetwork is a network with multiple WP sites on a single WP installation. It means, just by installing WordPress once on your server, you will be able to run multiple websites on it. There are a number of plugins and tools available that can be used if you want to run thousands of sites on your multisite. It is a great way to expand the working potential of your site.

Difference Between Standalone WordPress Version And A Multinetwork

1. Super Administrator:

When we talk about the regular WP installation, the highest level of permission or authority is “Administrator”. However, a multinetwork or multisite installation has a “Super Administrator” which has complete access to every site present on the network.

2. Network Admin:

every site on a multisite network is having its own dashboard which is similar to the standalone version of WP. in addition to this, there is another admin dashboard which is called “Network Admin” using which super admins can manage the network site settings.

3. Themes And Plugins:

Themes as well as plugins installed in the network admin area in a multinetwork, are available for use on any site in that network. There are two different ways in which a plugin or theme can be activated: a super admin can “network enable’ a theme or “network activate’ a plugin. This makes the theme or plugin available network side. The WordPress themes and plugins can also be activated on individual subsites in a similar way that we do for standalone WP sites.

4. Files:

In a multinetwork, your wp-config.php file will have some extra lines of code, which activate the multisite and helps WP know that it is up and running.

5. Database:

for a standalone WP installation, the database has 11 database tables for storing the website’s content as well as settings. However, with multisite, 9 out of these 11 tables are duplicated for each site.

What Can You Expect From A WordPress Multinetwork?

  • From a single installation, you can run a network that hosts multiple sites and blogs.
  • You can have both subdomains and directories.
  • You can add and install various creative WP themes and plugins and make them available for all other WP sites that your network hosts.
  • You can make your multisite available for other users so that they can create their accounts and run their sites as well as blogs.
  • You can make any changes to all themes as a Super Admin of the network. Whereas, the admin of a website does not have the authority to do the changes in themes.

Enable WordPress’s Multisite Functionality:

If you are already running WordPress, you can easily enable its multisite functionality. Else, you need to first install WordPress properly and then enable it. Another thing you need to take care of is that you have to take a full backup of your site before you enable the multisite functionality.

To setup WordPress multi-network, you have to connect your WP site using cPanel or FTP client and access the wp-config.php file. Copy the code given below and add it to the wp-config.php file.

/* Multisite */

define('WP_ALLOW_MULTISITE', true);

Save the file. Upload this saved file back to the server.

How You Can Set Up WordPress Multi-Network?

After enabling WP multisite functionality, now proceed with multisite network setup.

Log in to your WP site and go to Tools > Network Setup. Here you will be able to configure and setup WordPress multi-network. Choose whether you want the sites in your network to make use of the subdomains or subdirectories. After that, add the title of your network, admin email address in the Network Details.

You can find the relevant codes on Enabling the Network. You need to copy and paste these codes in wp-config.php and htaccess files in your WP root directory by using the FTP client.

After you are done with updating files, just go back to your WP Dashboard and log in. In the WP admin bar, you will find the WordPress Multisite Network menu. That is how you have successfully created and set up a WP multinetwork.

Configuring The Network Settings:

In order to configure the network settings, go to My Sites > Network Admin > Dashboard. Locate the settings link in the left sidebar so that you could configure settings. You need to provide the network title and admin email address, on the settings screen,  which is the same that you provided while doing the network setup.

Then move to Registration settings. In this setting, you can enable registration, user-account registration, new site registration by users that are logged in, registering of sites and user accounts.

By enabling Registration Notifications, you will receive a notification email whenever a new user or a new site is registered on your network.

To enable the website administrators to add new users to their existing sites, you need to check the next to Add New Users.

There are certain options that might prove useful such as Limited Email Registrations and Banned Email Domains. The Limited Email Registrations can be used for limiting the site registrations up to certain domains only.  With Banned Email Domains, you can enter the domains so that you will be able to ban them from site registrations.

To enable you to manage the options for new site creation on your WordPress network, there is New Site Settings. Here, you will be able to customize or edit the Welcome Email text, Welcome User Email as well as the First Post.

Next comes the Upload Settings which is an important section to configure while trying to set up a WordPress Multinetwork. These settings can be used to control the available site upload space for every registered site on your network, upload file types, and the maximum allowable upload file size. These settings pose a limitation so as to prevent your server from getting loaded or being slowed down.

To Conclude:

Creating a WordPress Multinetwork is very easy. And it is equally easy to run it. This is an excellent way to keep and manage multiple sites in one place with ease. Once you have learned the technique for setup WordPress multi-network, you can effortlessly manage multiple sites on it and even go a step further and think about making money from it by hosting client’s websites.

Back to blog