This white paper is written by a non IT person, keeping in mind some needs that cropped up. So please excuse me!
Today, we happen to manage more than one related websites. Some or most of them use the same set up components, yet try to work as if they are independent.
Can we get the following implemented in Joomla?
Let me give an example.
Site name: www.beta-universe.com – config file name – site1.ini
Site name: www.beta-earth.com – config file name – site2.ini
Site name: www.beta-antartica.com – config file name – site3.ini
Site name: www.alpha-animals.com – config file name – site4.ini
All of them have their independent look and feel.
1) Each site has its own folder – site1, site2, site3 and site4 under the default installation folder.
2) All sites use the same database, and installation base.
However, whenever a component is installed, you have to choose if that particular component will be used by a particular site or not. – something like placing ticks in a check box - site1, site2- site4.
For example – fireboard will be used only on site1 (www.beta-universe.com)
Perhaps, the statistics or calendar component would be used on all sites.
Hence we ought to be able to use a particular component for a particular site, as it pleases us.
2 things are important here.
a) There ought to be a main config file that defines that if the called url starts with www.beta-universe.com or simply beta-universe.com then the config file residing under site1 folder will be called.
b) If a particular URL is called, then the sql table called will be of the type site1_fireboard_customParameter.
Now some things like users might be the same for sites 1-3, but not for site4. Hence such things need to be either replicated or a parameter needs to pass, to refer it from ONE site.
Also, when anyone registers, he ought to automatically go to the registration on a particular designated site and get registered there, and then come back. Something like how google works.
In article manager, instead of just choosing the section>category of the site into which we are typing the data, we need an ajax option to keep adding more section>category options. Both, within the site and in other sites – site2 or site3.
Let me elaborate.
If I am talking about galaxies, today, it comes under sectionX>categoryY. That’s it. I cannot place the same under sectionA>categoryB too, without re-creating the entire page once again – a waste of space!
Hence, if an ajax method allowed me to add more sections and categories it would be great.
Similarly, I ought to be able to choose a section and category from another site too. Like, site2 or site3, where the same data can be displayed.
Hence what is achieved is
1) Single install
2) Single database
3) Same users – on chosen sites
4) Sigle sign on.
5) Shared data – not just the database.
My hunch is, this needs more than just a minor update to joomla 1.5. Perhaps this could be placed in the bin for Joomla 2! But not later. This functionality will add killer power to the management side of joomla.
I don’t like giving this idea, but joomla could be spun off into two!
A) Joomla 2 and B) Joomla 2 Pro. With the Pro version supporting multi-site and other capabilites, YET MAINTAINING ITS FREE STATURE !!! GNU-GPL!!!
Hope no other idea creeps in!