A multi-language WordPress blog with WPMU
Right from the start I wanted to have my blog in two languages: Romanian and English. So I’ve started to look for plugins and other solutions to accomplish that. To my surprise, I couldn’t find a good working solution for having a single blog in two or more languages.
I have tried “xlanguage” and “qtranslate” as multi-language wordpress plugins, but the results were far under my expectations. It seems that neither of these plugins won’t separate completely one language data from another. They allow you to have posts, pages and categories in different languages, but what about the rest of the information in the blog.
What about the most recent posts and most recent comments? It’s very annoying to have a post or a list of posts say in English and the most recent posts and most recent comments on the sidebar in Romanian.
Also, no plugin seemed to be able to create a separate friendly URL for each language for a post, category or page . This is a big problem too, when you use the post or page title or category names in URLs, since, as it is very obvious, the titles, categories names and tags are different from one language to another.
Maybe there is another, better plugin, that fixes all these issues, but I couldn’t find it.
So I started to think what I wanted to achieve: basically, I wanted to have two completely separated, independent versions of the site, one for each language, but I also wanted these distinct blogs to use the same files, themes, plugins so I wouldn’t be forced to duplicate files on the server and make files updates in two places. Sounds familiar? The solution was quite obvious to me after few seconds of thinking: WordPress MU (or WordPress Multi User).
What WPMU gives you? It gives you the power to have two (as I wanted) or more distinct blogs using one single application setup and database. Of course, it is meant towards having more blogs for more users, but, thinking out of the box, you can create more distinct, independent blogs for a single user. Which is exactly what I wanted.
So, I’ve set it up, as you can see and it’s working like a charm. Now I can have my real multi-language site, without one language content mixing with another language, while keeping the application, themes and plugins in a single place.