I have not done much work on wp-SwimTeam over the past few months but about a week ago I dusted off my virtual machine (have I ever mentioned how much I love VMware Workstation?) in preparation for the upcoming season. Since I last worked on the project there have been numerous patches for Windows XP (my development area is an XP VM) and WordPress has moved from 2.7 through the 2.8.x releases and is now on 2.9.1.
All new work will be done against 2.9.1 (for now) so I have upgraded WordPress and the plugins that I use in conjunction with wp-SwimTeam. There are two areas where I will focus on immediately – importing results which I never finished last year and volunteer management. I’ll probably finish the portion of results I am working on right now and then move on to volunteer management since we’ll need that functionality in March when the MacDolphins do registration.
The CASL Ambassadors web site is actually a collection of WordPress blogs – the main site plus one for each of six age group teams. When I initially set it up I tried using WordPress-MU but my hosting solution wasn’t capable for MU’s requirements. Then I tried a plugin called WP-Hive which allows a collection of blogs to share some common infrastructure. Wp-Hive looked promising but I ran into some concerns which kept me from using it.
Ultimately I ended up setting up a separate blog for each site and hoped to come back to it at some point. That point was a couple weeks ago when I decided to do some maintenance on the sites. I ended up using the main installation as a parent and linked (using Unix symbolic links) all of the sub-domain sites back to parent. The only exception was the wp-content directory which is a real directory (so uploads can be unique) but within wp-content I linked back to the parent’s themes and plugins.
This worked pretty well – if I install a plugin or theme for the main site it is available for all of the sub-domain sites and when I upgrade WordPress, all of the sub-domain sites are upgraded as well. Once I got this running, I wanted to share the users across all blogs.
After several attempts and numerous Google searches, I ended up following the directions in this thread and this thread and got everything to work. I don’t particularly care for having to modify one of the core WordPress files since it will go away the next time I update WordPress but none of the other solutions I tried worked.