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No WWW (11 posts)

  1. bnettles
    Posted 16 years ago #

    It appears that the latest version of Wordpress MU proudly eliminates the ability to have www in the url. THIS IS A HUGE MISTAKE.

    According to Matt Cutts in the 2007 SEO Wordpress Talk at Wordcamp, he pointed out that and are considered two separate domain names each with thier own individual page rank.

    If you guys force me to remove the www, and most of my external links have the www, then people start linking to the site without the www, my pagerank will not flourish as it should. Furthermore, the number of pages on my site will be split between www and no www - once again hurting my page rank.

    Please remove this functionality to being optional. You are hurting your end users by telling us how to structure our URLs.

  2. jackiedobson
    Posted 16 years ago #

    WPMu does not elimate the www. If you note, you can actually have a blog with the username of 'www'.

    Actually I believe most webservers will forward the 'www' domain to the non-www URL if there's no redirection in place. May want to look at your DNS record and see how it handles a 'www' call.

    Since the webserver forwards the URL from 'www' to the non-www, Google will see it as a single domain.

    Example: Go do a lookup of both with and without the 'www'. You'll note that it's the same.

  3. nibb
    Posted 15 years ago #

    Jacie, sorry but you are incorrect. Having spent a good angst ridden hour trying to shoehorn MU into a domain name with a 'www' prefix I can only heartily disagree.

    At first - coming from the excellent base install of WP single blog, a joy to use compared to the 20 odd other CMS systems I use, I expected MU to be no different. After several fails, meaningless error messages and important messages written too small, or hidden away, and with a fresh cup of coffee I set about trying to find out why the damn install was failing.

    It took some time to notice the no-www rant pitched onto the install page, I had glossed over it whilst looking for something meaningful. I followed the link to the home site, then back to MU, then spent 30 odd minutes looking all over the web for a fix, before finding an excellent article on our own forums here about how to hack the code to allow 'www' sites in.

    This I duly did - hoorah, it works a treat. Now, I admin my own DNS, I admin the server, I run the Apache and the libraries, I admin hundreds of sites and have been at this for nearly 15 years. It took me an hour of mucking about to get an install of Wordpress - previously the easiest install going - to actually work and I had to hack the code base to do it.

    To support a no-www policy may be honourable, the writers may feel its the best campaign they have ever supported, but when you strong arm others who wish to use your software into the same idiom and understanding, surely that campaigns call of freedom of choice degrades into hypocrisy?

    I wanted a domain with 'www' in it, that was my choice, if its a choice issue, its of no big deal to add the option into MU without potentially alienating the community from even trying the product in the first place. Its a stupid action and an own goal.

    For the benefit of anyone else suffering from this, here's the post I found most beneficial, solution about half-way down by Vimm

  4. honewatson
    Posted 15 years ago #

    I've gone from www to non-www with permanent redirects and actually gotten better search results after the change.

    The sky will not fall on your head if you do the proper 301 redirect to non-www.

  5. cafespain
    Posted 15 years ago #

    Also, if you setup your site in Google webmaster tools:
    You can tell Google which domain you would prefer to be indexed under (www. or non www.) and it will alter all the records in Google's index accordingly.

  6. bebradsm
    Posted 15 years ago #

    Here is a scenario I have encountered that requires WPMU to have a www in the domain name.

    An organization has a Microsoft Active Directory domain of for all of their internal users. The WPMU is hosted on an external webserver also named Due to the presence of Active Directory, internal users can only access the website by going to When WPMU redirects them to, that resolves to the IP of the internal domain controller and prevents them from accessing the site.

    So far I have not been able to fix my WPMU install to not redirect...

  7. lunabyte
    Posted 15 years ago #

    Install it on a subdomain, like blogs.whatever.tld.

  8. bebradsm
    Posted 15 years ago #

    Ok, how about the www. subdomain :)....

    Anyway, I got WPMU running on www. successfully.

    First I had to replace all occurances of in my existing SQL database dump with (except of course for email entries).

    Then I commented out two lines in wpmu-settings.php that did the redirect (I think it was around lines 9-10).

    Then I added an entry in my .htacces file to make www. the prefered domain, like:

    RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^example\.org$ [NC]
    RewriteRule ^(.*)$$1 [R=301,L]

    So I'm all set as long as I don't upgrade...

  9. nitsujri
    Posted 15 years ago #

    Thanks bedbradsm, this helped me a lot. The decision to remove the www is purely something the wpmu guys decided. Not all businesses desire to run their blogs the same. Personally, I wish it was an option, but I can live with manually making the changes.

  10. andrea_r
    Posted 15 years ago #

  11. thelaw
    Posted 15 years ago #

    The problem with this depracation system is simple - what if you have forums or other content that is indexed in Google and other search engines? I've got over 100,000 links to URLs. From my understanding, search engines generally view, and as three completely different sites. So if you've set yourself up as, you lose all the benefits of your current setup when you install Wordpress MU on a URL. Please correct me if I'm wrong but this seems consistent and the OP agrees.

    Here's another issue - you're fighting the rest of the world, many of which still adhere to "www". Wordpress can hope to teach the world a lesson but that's a rather arrogant statement to say "this is the way you should do it and, if you don't, well... to heck with you!" I'd rather not lose all my links and just set things up this way with the "www". When the world agrees with the no-www people and technology catches on unanimously, then the folks at Wordpress should start thinking about having a non-www install and usage only.

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