Drupal Multi-Site for Churches

3 comments | Posted: 29 June 09 in Tutorials, by Yannick Lyn Fatt

I recently had the opportunity to do a presentation on multi-site setups in Drupal for the Jamaican Drupal Group. The premise of a multi-site setup is that you have more than one website using a single install (or code base) of Drupal as opposed to having separate installations for each website. Some of you may already be familiar with this if you use Wordpress MU. What’s cool about Drupal is it doesn’t require a different edition. Drupal supports multi-site “out of the box.”

We use Drupal’s multi-site capabilities at the University of the West Indies in Mona, Jamaica to run a number of our department sites, and are currently building out several more. After sharing my presentation with fellow Godbit member Nathan Smith, he pointed out that this type of information could be beneficial to large ministries as well, and encouraged me to share it here.

A number of churches have multiple campuses, each with their own subdomains running on separate installs of various content management systems. According to Nathan, a recurring theme is the desire for one CMS to handle multiple sites.

For churches with this particular need, a multi-site setup could be a very good idea. All these sites could share a single code base, making it easier to do core updates for all sites, rather than having several installations of a CMS sitting on the same server and having to update each one separately.

There are other advantages to multi-site setups such as being able to share themes, modules, content and users across all sites. This means there you could have multiple sites, but use a single sign-on throughout. This is something that both Warner Brothers Music and Sony Music have achieved via Drupal.

Of course, multi-site setups do have a few slight disadvantages, some of which are pointed out in the presentation. Therefore, it’s up to you whether or not you decide to go this route. With that said though, I hope the presentation slides and video will prove to be informative and helpful. If there are any corrections or suggestions, please feel free to let me know so that the slides can be updated and future presentations can be improved.

Discuss This Topic

  1. 1 Nathan Smith

    Yannick: Thanks so much for researching this, and for taking the time to share how it can benefit churches. Moving forward, I think that Drupal is going to play a huge role in many businesses and ministries, especially with all the big improvements planned for Drupal 7 coming in the next year or so.

  2. 2 Yannick L.

    No problem Nathan. Thanks for encouraging me to share it. I definitely agree that Drupal will be playing a big role in businesses and ministries as the guys at Geeks and God and so many others have shown. Drupal 7 is also shaping up to be pretty good and I can’t wait to see what other things are in the pipeline for Drupal in the future.

  3. 3 Matt

    Thanks for sharing this Yannick. I actually found your presentation via Twitter. I hope this does help ministries out. Any idea about when Drupal 7 will come out?


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