Managing multiple sites with Zenario

Management of multiple sites is important for Internet Service Providers, agencies, and companies with multiple departments who may operate micro-sites or their own customer portals.

Zenario has two powerful features for managing multiple sites:

  • a single installation of the Zenario software can be used to run multiple "client" sites.
  • a centralised authentication system, so that administrators can work on a range of client websites through one account.

Library-style software installation

You can have a single installation of the Zenario software on your server running multiple client sites.

Each client site has its own home directory which includes:

  • a single folder (zenario_custom) containing all CSS (skins), custom modules and custom plugin frameworks that are specific to that client; plus a single site config file
  • a small group of symlinks which connect the client to the centralised Zenario software
  • any number of other files and folders, including third-party programs.

This means:

  • backups are easy (if you back up the client folder, you only get the client-specific things)
  • upgrades are easy (you won't find any client-specific data in the Zenario software directory), just upgrade the centralised Zenario software once and all clients will be upgraded
  • it's easy to create new client sites: just create a database, make the folder and symlinks, and run the installer.

Our documentation area has more detailed information on multi-site setups.

Multi-site authentication database

In an agency or large company, you probably have administrators who want to log easily into a range of client sites or micro-sites.

Zenario makes this easy and secure. 

This works by running one additional Zenario site (this is usually on the same software installation as the clients but doesn't have to be), and creating the accounts of the multi-site admins on that "global" site.

Client sites that are on the authentication "star" are connected to the hub site by a small change in their configuration files.

When a multi-site administrator then logs in to the client site (using his credentials from the hub site), his details are retrieved from the global site and cached locally.

Client administrators will never know that other client sites exist, as the presence of other sites on the star is completely invisible to them.

Read more about the multi-site authentication system in our multi-site administrator documentation.