Maintain Several WordPress Sites? InfiniteWP is a Must!

If You Are Responsible For More Than One Ministry Website…

– then you need to use InfiniteWP. Period. Can I be that sure? Absolutely. How about this scenario: you notice pending updates on one of your ministry websites and notice that it is for a plugin you use on some other sites. You update the plugin, logout of site #1, navigate to admin for site #2, login, perform all plugin updates and then notice you have pending theme updates there too. You update themes, logout, login to site #3, etc. ad nauseam…

Even more time consuming than regular maintenance is the worst-case scenario of an unmaintained site getting hacked because you forgot about it completely. There is nothing quite unsettling as one of your church members asking you why there is inappropriate content on a website you are responsible for.

Whether its minutes every week or hours once a year, you could be spending a lot less time on maintenance thanks to the free InfiniteWP tool. InfiniteWP saves you time by helping you manage multiple WordPress sites from one single location. That’s right, one administrator login and one button will update everything on every site you manage! Even if you only have two or three different sites, the time you will spend setting up InfiniteWP today will pay for itself in several weeks. Oh, and did we mention that InfiniteWP is a free solution? Yes, that’s right–free!

What is InfiniteWP?

Like WordPress, InfiniteWP is a free website application that you install on your own hosting space. You can put it on a sub-domain (preferred) a sub-folder or even the root folder. Once installed and you have added your various WordPress sites to the directory, anything you would normally do from the WordPress dashboard on a single site can now be accomplished across some or all of your sites. Do all of your sites use a plugin that now has an update available? Instead of updating the plugin on each site individually, you can update them all at once. Brilliant!

InfiniteWP does much more than manage updates, it also can backup and restore sites, perform editorial duties like publishing and deleting posts, clone sites, and many other tasks. While managing updates is our favorite feature (and free) InfiniteWP offers many commercial add-ons that extend the possibilities even further.

How Do You Setup InfiniteWP?

Like WordPress, InfiniteWP is a self-hosted web application which must be separately installed on your web server. It can be setup on the same server as one of your WordPress installations and run side-by-side with it. While installing InfiniteWP is easy, and can even be kick-started from a WordPress plugin, it is important to realize that it is not a plugin and does not operate from within WordPress.

The easiest way to install InfiniteWP (and the method discussed here) is to download the admin panel installer and launch the install process from one of your primary WordPress sites. This will set it up on that WordPress database using the prefix iwp_ so you don’t have to bother with creating and configuring a new database. However, if you want to install InfiniteWP on a separate database, or control where and how you want it installed, you can follow the conventional instructions here.

Get started by downloading the installer plugin and saving it somewhere easy to find. Complete the following steps in order.

  1. Login to the WordPress site you wish to share with your InfiniteWP installation
  2. Navigate to Plugins > Add New
  3. Click the “upload” link
  4. Click the “choose file” button and locate the plugin zip file you downloaded earlier
  5. After the plugin file is uploaded click the “Install Now” button and wait for WordPress to process
  6. After installation is complete click “Activate Plugin”
  7. After activation a new screen will appear (below), click the button “Install InfiniteWP Admin Panel” and follow on-screen instructions

install

At this point the installation changes gears from WordPress running the process to the Installer running the process by itself. The first screen is a license that must be agreed to…

license1

license2

Next, InfiniteWP checks your website hosting environment for compatibility requirements. If any of these checks fail you will need to consult with your web hosting company about a solution.

reqs1

Now you need to assign a location for InfiniteWP and create your login credentials for it. If you leave the folder field blank it will be installed on your root. In this example I designated a new folder called “myupdater” specifically for InfiniteWP.

Regarding the login credentials, it should go without saying that you must use a non-standard email (no admin@domain.com, etc.) and choose a very secure password because this access now controls all admins on all your sites.

credentials

If everything goes well you will see the installation complete confirmation below. NOTE: It is very important that you immediately delete the “install” folder (i.e. yoursite.com/myupdater/install) once this installation is complete. Not doing so leaves your site vulnerable to intrusion. You can use your favorite FTP client or login to whatever web-based file manager your web hosting provides.

confirmation1

The next step is to tie in all of your individual WordPress sites to the InfiniteWP admin panel. To do this you must install a simple client plugin on each of your WordPress sites and input the authentication info on your InfiniteWP dashboard.

  1. From within one of your WordPress sites navigate to Plugins > Add New
  2. Search for InfiniteWP Client on the repository
  3. Install and then activate
  4. When activation is complete a box with authentication details will appear with a large green button that says “Copy Details”…click that and then navigate to your IndiniteWP admin panel. Here is a screenshot of the authentication details box.

iwp-client-confirm

Once you are logged into your InfiniteWP admin panel look for the “Add Website” button. It should be located in the lower left corner as illustrated below.

add_website

After clicking “Add Website,” an authentication details box will appear where you can simple paste the contents from clipboard in the first field and the relevant information will be copied to every field in this box. All you have to do is click the green “Add Site” button and your WordPress site is on the admin panel.iwp-add-cleint

Complete this client process for as many sites as you manage including the site you used to install InfiniteWP (remember that they are separate).

Wrap-Up

Now performing plugin or theme updates on your sites is as simple as clicking the “Update All” button on the admin panel homepage. No more logging in and out of several different WordPress dashboards to get your routine maintenance taken care of.

Additional uses for InfiniteWP are as endless as the name suggests. Backups, clones, plugin and theme management, multi-sight blog editing, etc. Checkout all the cool addons available at the InfiniteWP Website.

2 comments

  1. Dale Critchley

    I maintain 6 sites for church, home, and family with a couple more in mind for the future. I use ManageWP, which seems to work out better price-wise for fewer sites, but for those maintaining dozens or more, InfiniteWP or MainWP look to be better deals. Regardless which people choose, these are amazingly great tools, and I’m thankful for their availability. I switched over from Drupal to WP because of its ease of updating more than anything.

    • Nemanja

      Thanks for the vote of confidence, Dan!

      Our upcoming Orion release will have more flexible pricing (features will be determined and charged on a per-site basis, instead of having the same plan for all websites). Additionally, you will be able to add an unlimited number of Free websites to your account, to keep everything in one place without costing an arma and a leg.