Multiple sites vs. Multi-site?

darnoldy

Curmudgeon
Joined
Dec 20, 2004
Messages
1,731
Right now, I have 3 wordpress sites, each its own installation: one at the primary domain and two more, each on their own sub domain. I'm wondering if there are ant advantages/disadvantages to using the multi-site feature instead.

--don
 

mysiteguy

Migration Expert
Joined
Feb 20, 2007
Messages
3,079
I prefer multi-site when I've been in this situation for clients. One set of plugins to maintain, one set of security scans, one set of backups, etc. Also, if they need any paid licensed plugins, often it's cheaper to buy a multi-site license than several individual licenses.
 

LeadCrow

Apocalypse Admin
Joined
Jun 29, 2008
Messages
6,562
Advantages of MS:
- easier to maintain if you run fairly similar WP sites (perform maintainance tasks once rather than repeat them multiple times).
- lower total ressource consumption and accordingly your hosting bill.
- sharing users across sites (staff, contributors, members, supporters/backers), so its easier to participate in other sites in the network. Wordpress.com integration is IMO a better option to leverage an existing community much larger than you could create.

Disadvantages:
- updated skins and plugins are shared across sites, which may result in a site's changes causing issues on the others (iinm you cant keep multiple versions of an addon installed, unless forked).
- more prone to security risks and downtime. One site can bring down others with it.
- desirable addons may be incompatible with WPMU and supposed to be run on a normal Wordpress install.

Unless you're planning for your WP sites to be part of a thriving network, keeping installs separate will give you more leeway to change sites, remove inactive/dead ones, obtain and transfer ownership of a part of that network (iinm with a multisite youd have to sell all its subsites, and acquiring an independant wordpress site would not be evident to merge in a multisite installation). MS on the other hand would allow you to easily create a new site and immediately fill it with a portion of your existing sites' content (a common strategy in certain niches).
 

Nev_Dull

Anachronism
Joined
Apr 27, 2010
Messages
2,048
I've been wondering about the best use for multi-site myself. I've used it once for an instance where I needed to provide versions of the same content to three different audience groups. I don't know how well it would work in the case of bringing several disparate sites together.
 

darnoldy

Curmudgeon
Joined
Dec 20, 2004
Messages
1,731
Thank you all for your replies!

Based on your replies and my situation, I don't see any urgent reason to convert to multi-site... so I'l probably leave well-enough-alone for a bit longer.

--don
 

Shawn Gossman

Tazmanian Master
Joined
Dec 16, 2005
Messages
8,034
I used multi-site years ago to attempt a blog hosting service for a specific niche. It was one of the biggest pain in the rump that I have ever dealt with. Nowadays, I use WP primarily as a go-to for regular website creation. I know programming here and there but I want to do things quick so that software allows me to do just that. I keep all installs separate and with their own domain.
 

KnownHost

Participant
Joined
Apr 24, 2018
Messages
78
I'll chime in and throw another dagger at WPMU.

It's neat, it has it's place if you want to roll out tons of blog networks for links (which don't really work anymore) but from a back-end separation stand point it's a nightmare. Too many eggs in one basket if you ask me.
 
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