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I want to make a website that uses the same joomla files but different websites for each subdomain. I figured this approach is best for a multi website installation. Each subsite is a simple site that frontend users can create/edit articles from certain categories or upload images and files (for download). Also the database content (users, articles, images) is not shared between subsites. The reason I want the same files is that so I can edit the template files all at once, for instance to manually insert a common banner for all websites. I know that if I want to install a plugin for all the sites, I will have to manually install and configure them on each subsite, but I see no alternative.

What I want to know if this is possible.

I am also opened for suggestions on different approaches. (If any extensions are involved I would preffer free ones.)

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Yes, it is possible, but there is no free extension for such a mighty task.

I have used AlterBrains MightySites extension before, in various Case Scenarios, with a great success.

MightySites is Joomla! multisites manager and allows you to have multiple sites running in single hosting account and share database data between different Joomla! sites, with following features:

  • Single login/logout on websites.
  • No hacks of core files are required and no Joomla! core files are patched.
  • Ability to use database content, users (with Community Builder and JomSocial support) from other sites.
  • You can have many Joomla! websites using a single hosting account, with same users and JomSocial contents but with different template style etc.
  • You can easily replicate your current website into other website without building new hosting account!

MightySites is used for 2 main tasks:

  • Run multiple Joomla websites from single hosting account (all sites use same files but different database data).
  • Sharing of database contents (multiple sites can use same database tables, so these data are always same across all sites).

Highly Recommended.

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I believe Seblod Multisites Feature is capable for that and it's free. But the learning curve is steep (but it's worth it)

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