[wp-hackers] site sections, distinct theme per section

Dion Hulse (dd32) wordpress at dd32.id.au
Mon Jul 11 07:37:20 UTC 2011

Make sure all the installs share the same salts/keys as well

You'll then need to make the cookie apply to / rather than /install/
You can do this by defining the extra constants.
see the *COOKIEPATH constants here:

The capabilities for each user are stored in the usermeta, while you
can define a custom user table, the capabilities are stored as
per-site, meaning, the usermeta row has the database prefix prefixed.

You're probably also not going to be able to use most plugins such as
s2Member without heavy modification or syncing of the options to all
the sites in your "network"..

Long story short? You're going to have some headaches tieing 5
different installs together, and then getting plugins working nicely
on it too, there is a reason MultiSite installs were invented.

On 11 July 2011 17:21, John Black <immanence7 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Thanks for this.
> When it comes down to it, I really need to activate the entire theme, with the functionality it has. So it's more than appearances. This is the difficulty.
> Having looked into this more, and having tried a multisite installation (and then having experienced the difficulty of cloning a multisite install, and even backing one up), I'm heading in a direction few would agree with: discreet installs in subdirectories.
> Consequently, I have a new question:
> I now have four installs working together to constitute a site: 1) http://mydomain.com (an opening theme); 2) http://mydomain.com/main (the main site, based on a separate theme and a separate install); 3) http://mydomain.com/store (based on the same theme as /main but with a custom skin); and 4) http://mydomain.com/ads (based on the same theme as /main but with a custom skin).
> I want to keep the last two installs (#3 and #4) because I want to keep the URLs tight (i.e., http://mydomain.com/store and not http://mydomain.com/main/store).
> My question is: How can I integrate http://mydomain.com/main and http://mydomain.com/store so customers joining and logging in to /main are automatically linked to (and logged in to) /store and /ads?
> All sites are run within one database, with different wp_ prefixes. I tried adding the following to the bottom of the wp-config.php file of the installs I want to link:
> /** Unify Logins. */
> define(CUSTOM_USER_TABLE,'wp5_users');
> define(CUSTOM_USER_META_TABLE,'wp5_usermeta');
> wp5_ prefix is the prefix of the install I want to take precedence.
> (I picked up this tip here, by the way).
> But when I log into wp5_ (install #2) and go to the admin of wp6_ (install #3) it asks me to login again.
> So: a) customers of wp5_ (install #2 or /main) would have to have a separate account on wp6_ (install #3 or /store) and wp7_ (install #4 or /ads). People would be logging in twice or more. I want to unify these.
> Can I somehow bridge these installs?
> An added complexity is that I want to use s2Member or something similar to manage membership of my site as a whole.
> I also wanted users to be able to use their login details to access the site's forum (which so far is based on phpBB3; this plugin allows you to bridge Wordpress and phpBB3, but only by making all access to Wordpress be handled by phpBB3).
> If anyone can help me navigate through this maze I would be eternally grateful!!
> best,
> JB
> On 9 Jul 2011, at 01:11, Lynne Pope wrote:
>> To use multiple header.php files where you have created template pages for
>> your sections, see this:
>> http://codex.wordpress.org/Function_Reference/get_header
>> If your sections are set up as categories you can change the appearance &
>> layout with CSS (and, optionally, JavaScript). To ensure that only the
>> CSS/js you need for those sections is loaded use the following:
>> <?php if (is_category(category-1-ID)) { ?>
>> header.php content
>> <?php } elseif (is_category(category-2-ID)) { ?>
>> header.php content for category 2
>> <?php } else { ?>
>> Default header.php content for everything else
>> <?php } ?>
>> Also see http://codex.wordpress.org/Conditional_Tags#A_Category_Page
>> You can use the same conditionals within templates to alter the output or by
>> calling different templates when certain pages or categories are called.
>> There are several different ways to achieve what you want within one single
>> WP site but if you intend to make a lot of conditional calls, for example to
>> load different templates within your sections, WordPress will perform better
>> if you take the multisite subdirectory install route. Swapping out the CSS &
>> scripts etc in the header by using conditionals doesn't have any noticeable
>> impact on performance. However, if you use this PLUS loads of custom
>> templates it can make a noticeable difference.
>> Lynne
>> On Fri, Jul 8, 2011 at 8:54 PM, John Black <immanence7 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Thanks for that Lynne.
>>> 1. What kind of conditionals would I be looking for?
>>> 2. General comment thrown into the wilderness: It is obvious that very
>>> large organisations have different wings. Wordpress has made great leaps
>>> forward lately, in terms of adoption as a full blown CMS. This could be
>>> encouraged more if this kind of functionality (the ability to have sections,
>>> recalling different themes / aesthetics) were able to be built into a single
>>> install.
>>> I'll look into the multisite option.
>>> best,
>>> JB
>>> On 8 Jul 2011, at 10:30, Lynne Pope wrote:
>>>> It's possible to do this by using conditionals in the header.php to serve
>>>> different css and JavaScript files to different categories. This only
>>> works
>>>> if the underlying HTML structure is the same for each of your sections
>>> and
>>>> you are happy to have each section set up as a category. The only other
>>> way
>>>> to do this is by using a multisite install and setting each section up as
>>>> its own instance within subdomains.
>>>> Lynne
>>>> On Fri, Jul 8, 2011 at 5:29 PM, John Black <immanence7 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>> I've searched for an answer and didn't find anything. Not even a premium
>>>>> plugin exists, to my knowledge.
>>>>> Is there any way to do the following:
>>>>> Have multiple sections within a single WordPress installation (or
>>> domain)
>>>>> that each call up a distinct theme?
>>>>> For example: Maybe I'd like to use one theme for the opening pages; use
>>> a
>>>>> second theme for a dedicated e-store; a third theme for a dedicated
>>> video
>>>>> store; or another theme for a ticket / help section.
>>>>> These are just examples.
>>>>> I know that much can be done with single post templates, but this is not
>>>>> what I'm talking about. I'd really like to be able to use more than one
>>>>> theme on my domain.
>>>>> (p.s., I know subdomains would be a way, possibly, of doing this. But it
>>>>> seems an awful hassle, to have several installations running, several
>>>>> databases, etc, and I'm sure there would be issues later, not least,
>>>>> perhaps, with SEO).
>>>>> ANY IDEAS??
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