DotNetNuke Host Settings

One of the great benefits of DotNetNuke is the ability to run multiple websites using the same DotNetNuke installation and database.  Each website within your DotNetNuke installation is also referred to as a Portal.  DotNetNuke can easily run hundreds of Portals on a single install.

After DotNetNuke is first setup, there will be a default Portal which is usually used as the primary website.  You can then add more by logging into your website with the Host account and accessing the host menu > Portals page.

Adding a new Portal

When adding a new Portal to your DotNetNuke Installation there is only one real decision to make.  You will need to decide if you want to make a Child Portal or a Parent Portal.  The primary difference is whether or not this new website will be on the same domain name or a different domain name.  Parent portals will be on a new domain name and are usually completely un-related websites.  Parent is the default because it is the most popular and used 90% of the time.  The only time you would want to do a Child portal is if the website is going to use the same domain as another Portal on your install.  Perhaps it is a separate division with-in the same company.

When you setup a child portal it will be accessed with a / notation:

It is recommended that you use Parent portals whenever possible, but occasionally Child portals are a good choice to cleanly separated divisions within a company or organization.  You must remember that they are completely separate websites.  There is no sharing of information between any child or parent Portals.

Field Names

  • Portal Type: Parent / Child
  • Portal Alias:If using a Parent portal your alias would be your website domain.  Such as: “” or ”localhost.”  If you are doing a Child portal it will usually be “” 
  • Home Directory:If you do not customize this all of your Portal’s files and information will be saved in a directory called Portals/[PortalId] where [PortalId] will be an incremented number for each portal you create. We recommend customizing the Home directory and entering something like: Portals/portal-name where “portalname” is the name of your new website.  That way when you are looking at your file system you can see a familiar name versus just a number.  It’s going to be a directory so I would recommend excluding spaces and keeping it simple.
  • Title: The Title that will show in the top of your browser for your website
  • Description: The default meta data for description that will appear on all pages of your site to search engines
  • Keywords: Comma separated list of keywords that search engines will read
  • Template:  Usually select default website. Learn more about Templates below.
  • Username: The username for the Administrator login that will be created for this Portal
  • First Name: The First name of the Administrator
  • Last Name: The Last name of the Administrator
  • Email: Email address of the Administrator.  This is used by some modules to automatically notify the Administrator of changes or updates.
  • Password & Confirm Password: Password for the Administrator account that is beign created

Portal Templates

Portal templates allow you to save your website’s pages, modules, and content to use in creating another website.  For example, if you were doing work for a coffee shop franchise and each location wanted a similar website using templates could be advantageous.  After you create the home, about, menu, news, and contact pages for one location, you could export the template.  You could then create a new Portal, import that template, and it would setup the website just like the previous one. You would then edit that Portal and change the information that was specific to that coffee shop.  If you need to build a lot of similar sites this is a great route. 

Creating a Template

Login to your website with a Super User/Host account and access the Host menu > Portals.  On the Portals page there is an option to “Export Portal Template.”

Using a Template

You can use a Template when creating a new Portal, or when using the site wizard on an existing Portal.  To access the Site Wizard, use the Admin menu > Site Wizard.

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