I can’t help but get my geek on when I hit a problem. Last week I discovered that I need a separate theme licence for each of my subdomains. I checked this when I bought the licence, but it seems that between us the marketplace and I dropped the ball.
The solution – it seems – was to change my WordPress.org installation to a multisite. I read around and delayed action for a few days.
On the plus side using a multisite would have a few benefits:
- The aforementioned licence situation, which applies to a number of licences
- When creating a new site I can clone an existing site and replace the contents. No more sitting with two instances of WordPress side by side looking for the right settings to make them the same
- Plugins and themes are managed centrally. Now I only have to log in once to manage all my updates
- This isn’t one I imagine needing – I can create a new subdomain and give it to someone else to manage. A bit like giving them a WordPress.com site. I can control the theme and plugins, but they get to manage the content.
While understanding the benefits helped me make my decision to change, I was a bit scared by the process. As with all things WordPress there is plenty of help on offer. I found I could either follow the scary looking WordPress Codex instructions or the prettier guides written by any number of WordPress practitioners. As the pretty instructions all mentioned stuff I didn’t understand, I went with WordPress Codex and they stood me in good stead.
That’s not to say I haven’t had a couple of learning points. When I made the change my site went down:
- As I investigated it, I came across the idea of a wildcard subdomain. I am pretty certain I don’t need one and my hosts set one up anyway.
- It turns out that I had to set up an A record (and CNAME record as I don’t use www). As I type I am waiting for the changes to propagate.
If you think a multisite might be for you, I still recommend the WordPress Codex instructions but suggest you speak with your host to make sure you have the correct DNS records.
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