Is it possible to run a site (beta site, beta.subdomain.com) with separate files in the subdomain rather than using symlinks?

I want to test this way so the files in the subdomain are separate from the main website and can be modified and tested without risk.

  • You have to do everything twice: Two databases (in one server?) two APCs, etc. we once killed our live site, because the staging site wrote into live APC... Mar 11, 2014 at 15:12

1 Answer 1


This is possible to do, simply copy the files, make a new virtualhost for your subdomain and it should work out of the box.

You will not be "risk free" as the database will be shared, changes you make to either site will affect the other. Things such as installing an extension will cause problems, if its not installed in both spots. Template changes and so on should be ok to test this way.

There is a much better way to do this, and thats to duplicate the site into a development site. Test in your development, without fear of affecting live. http://www.magentocommerce.com/wiki/groups/227/moving_magento_to_another_server

  • And this wont affect the DB at all? I need it as a multi-site store so as to test the new theme/design files.
    – Wayners247
    Mar 11, 2014 at 15:07
  • It totally will affect the DB. I edited my comment to reflect that.
    – Aepod
    Mar 11, 2014 at 15:10
  • Thank you. All I really want to do is setup a new theme/design without affecting the current live environment. As this is mainly file changes and small changes in the DB to allow the site to load the correct theme (via magento admin) I wanted to know the best way to achieve this.
    – Wayners247
    Mar 11, 2014 at 15:13
  • If its JUST a theme. You can setup a second store, change the theme for that store, and make your theme changes there. I still think your best option is to make a development server. Typically I NEVER edit on a live site, I create a VMware, or virtualbox locally, edit and change things there and then when its "perfect", take the commited changes(from git) and merge them in on live. You can easily do what your trying to do on live, but you would be a lot safer to create a local copy and work there.
    – Aepod
    Mar 11, 2014 at 15:16
  • Again thanks for the advice.It is just a theme update, however the theme and its files overwrite some older files which then causes an issue with the current active theme on the site; hence my quandary. I think I will do as you recommend and create a complete copy of the site as it is currently, files and db to a new location on the server.
    – Wayners247
    Mar 11, 2014 at 15:18

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