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Installing Multiple Versions of WordPress on the Same Account, But Masking Them to Appear as Different Domains

by Tom Johnson on May 31, 2007
categories: blogging technical-writingwordpress

If you have a web host, like Blue Host, you can have different domains (called add-on domains) that point to different subdirectories within your host account. In this post I explain how to set this up. It's a bit confusing and I've never seen instructions on configuring this.

Let's say I want to have two sites, one called and the other, and I only want to have one web host. The root domain of the web host could be anything, such as (my domain). To set this up, here's the basic procedure:

  1. Call up your web host and register two add-on domains, such as and It may cost $10 or so to register them. Then it takes a day to kick in. Of course these add-on domains need to be available domains. I'm using johndoe and janedoe as generic examples.
  2. Tell them to point to subdirectory Point to subdirectory
  3. Now go into your host's cPanel, and use Fantastico to install WordPress in the two add-on domains. In the Install in Domain drop-down box, select Leave the Install in Directory field blank. The fields should appear as follows:
    subdirectory installation

When WordPress installs, the add-on domain folder will appear in the public_html folder in your file directory. So if you access your file directory via FileZilla (or some other FTP program), and then go to /public_html, you'll see a folder called johndoe. That's where your WordPress files are installed.

Within the WordPress admin dashboard, go to the Options tab and you will see that your add-on domain appears in both the WordPress URL and the Blog address (URL) fields.


You can log into your add-on domain blog by going to

Users will be able to go to and and navigate them without realizing that they are really subdirectories under

Special thanks to Ryan at BlueHost tech support for walking me through this. Support at BlueHost is excellent, which is probably why they're at the top of the recommended hosts list at WordPress.

About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

I'm an API technical writer based in the Seattle area. On this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, AI, information architecture, content strategy, writing processes, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out my API documentation course if you're looking for more info about documenting APIs. Or see my posts on AI and AI course section for more on the latest in AI and tech comm.

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