So, I was wondering whether or not it would be possible to actually map a domain within a mapped domain on UMW Blogs, and I finally got my answer at the Faculty Academy workshop I ran on domain mapping.
What the hell am I talking about? Well, it’s pretty simple, we currently have two WPMu sites running within UMW Blogs. The straight UMW Blogs site, as well as http://greenwoodlibrary.org (a.k.a Longwood Blogs), which is a mapped domain/site on UMW Blogs using David Dean’s awesome Multi-Site Manager plugin. So, in other words, greenwoodlibrary.org is a publishing platform within a publishing platform that the library folks and faculty at Longwood are using for a pilot and some experimentation. (And it was excellent to see so many people from Longwood in attendance at Faculty Academy getting a sense of what’s happening at UMW through this tool.) The best thing about this setup is that it’s simply running off the same install/database as UMW Blogs but with it’s own domain and dynamic subdomains. (Stop and think about the implications of this for a second: one upgrade, one set of themes, one group of plugins, distributed functionality, and potentially more sharing and lower costs for everyone involved—for more on this here is my post about this experiment from November.)
So my question was, can a student or faculty at Longwood just as easily map their own domain on their site, for example mapping http://student.org onto http://student.greenwoodlibrary.org as folks here on the UMW Blogs domain can thanks to Donncha’s Domain Mapping Plugin. And the short answer is YES! I was concerned there may be some issue with the multi-site manager plugin, or some larger .htaccess issue, or even a multi-database issue, but nope, none of that is of concern. It works like a charm. Now I just need to figure out how to filter BuddyPress by domain on a multi-site setup like UMW Blogs, and this thing is some amazing potential for collecting and share data amongst and between students, faculty, and staff from a wide-range of colleges, universities, and, dare I say it, K-12.