Configure Multi Site Manager (MSM) in AEM

Multi Site Manager (MSM) allows us to manage to easily maintain multiple website and reduce the effort of replicating it in another language or device. In this tutorial we will learn how to configure Multi Site Manager (MSM) in AEM. After completing this tutorial you will have a clear understanding  about :-

What is Multi Site Manager (MSM)

Multi Site Manager (MSM) allows aem developers to create copy of existing site and automatically update the copy when changes are done to the source site.

Advantages of using MSM :-

  • Easily manage multiple websites that share common content.
  • MSM allows aem developers to¬†define relations between the sites so that content changes in one site are automatically replicated in all other sites.
  • Reduces the time to manage your websites and increases the re-use of common content.
  • Maintain common look and feel across all websites.

When we should use MSM

  • Sites are in multiple countries.
  • Sites are in multiple languages.
  • Need to reuse/replicate same content in multiple websites.
  • Maintain consistent branding and content across websites.

Manage different language versions using MSM

The biggest advantage of using MSM over internationalization is ease to add new languages to websites. To leverage MSM functionality a website must follow below structure:-

  • The web site should have¬†a single page as the root.
  • Each child page is the root page of each language version.
  • The name of the child page is the language code.

Lets see how to add a new language support to existing website using Multi Site Manager (MSM).

Steps to add a language to website using MSM
  • Open SiteAdmin console, select the root page of website.

Site structure msm in aem cq5 tutorials

  • Click New > New Page.
    msm create a language page in aem
  • In create page dialog , enter Title and the Name. Remember Name¬†should be in <language-code> or¬†<language-code>_<country-code> format. You can see the list of default languages-code that comes with AEM at¬†/libs/wcm/core/resources/languages¬†node.
    list of available languages in aem cq5 tutorials
  • Select your Template and click Create.
    msm add a language page in aem
  • From Website(SiteAdmin) Console,¬†select the root page of website.
  • Go to Tools menu –> Select Language copy.
    Language copy msm in aem
  • After clicking language copy option, it will open a table which consist of all languages in which this website is currently supported. An¬†X¬†mark against any page means that it is available in this particular language.
  • To copy a page in new language, simply select the cell and choose one option from drop down menu. Below we are copying company page to Russian language.
    Language copy dialog in aem cq5 tutorials
Language Copy OptionsContent Type Recommended
autoInherit behaviour from parent pages.
ignoreDoes not create a copy of this page and its children pages.
<language>+ (e.g. Russian+)Create copy of the page and all its children from that language.
<language> (e.g. Russian)Create copy of the page but not its children from that language.
  • Select Language copy Type and click OK.
  • Confirmation¬†dialog will Pop up. Click Yes to copy.

Create a Blueprint in MSM

Blueprint allow¬†us¬†to control multiple live copies and apply¬†consistent rollout configurations to all¬†blueprint’s live copies. Using blueprint rollout feature we can push modifications to all it’s live copies simultaneously.

Follow below steps for creating a blue print in AEM.

  • Go to Tools console.
  • Under Tools –> Select MSM Control Centre (Root Folder).
  • Click New –> New Page¬†in top Right Corner.
    AEM Tools MSM Control Center
  • Create Page dialog will Open. Enter below details :-
    • Title – Enter page title.
    • Name – Enter name in lower-case with out space¬†as this will be out Page node in crxde.
    • Template – Select Blue Print Template
    • create blueprint page in aem
  • Click Create.
  • Right click on newly created blueprint page –> Click¬†Open.¬†open blueprint page in aem
  • Click edit¬†button.
    AEM MSM edit blueprint page
  • Blueprint page dialog will open. and enter below details:
    • Name – will be pre populated from¬†our Page title.
    • Description – Enter Page description.
    • Source Path– Select the source from where we want to copy page.
      AEM MSM Blueprint page setting in aem
  • Click OK. Your blueprint page is ready.
  • You can also see a link (show in control centre) in bottom for Blueprint Control Centre.
    AEM MSM Blueprint Control Center

Note:- Managing huge number of sites is always tedious even if they are live copy. Blueprint Control Centre saves us from this tasks by centrally managing all the live copies under one blueprint Page in an organized way.

Create a Live Copy from existing branch in MSM

Live Copy is  basically creating a new site based on the content and structure of an existing site or blueprint. MSM allows us to create Live copies and automatically update when changes are made in base/source site.

For create a live copy using Existing branch or page, AEM has provided New Live Copy option which we are going to use in below example.

Follow below steps for creating a Live copy from existing branch or blue print in AEM :-

  • Open Website (Site Admin) Console.
  • Select the page or folder¬†under which you want to create this live copy.
  • Select New –> New Live Copy option from top.
    AEM MSM create Live copy using existing page
  • Create Live copy dialog will open, enter below details :-
    • Title – Enter Page title eg.¬†My geometrixx Live copy
    • Name – Enter page node name eg.¬†geo_live_copy [ Note :- Avoid space between words]
    • Live copy from – Enter source path whose live copy you want to create
      Note :- Change in source path get automatically reflected in Live copy.
    • Exclude sub pages– select this option if you don’t want sub pages get copied.
      AEM create live copy select source
  • On the sync config tab, we can specify roll out configurations. This i will cover in next tutorial.
    AEM create live copy roll out config
  • Click Create. Your Live copy is ready.

Create a Live Copy from blueprint in MSM

For create a live copy using blueprint , AEM has provided New Site option which we are going to use in below example.

  • Open Website (Site Admin) Console.
  • Select the page or folder¬†under which you want to create this live copy.
  • Click New –> New Site.
    AEM MSM create Live copy using blueprint
  • Create site dialog will open, enter below details:
    • Title – Enter Site¬†title eg. My Live copy website
    • Name – Enter site¬†node name eg. livecopywebsite [ Note :- Avoid space between words]
    • Select Template¬†–¬†Select the Template which you want to use as blueprint.
      AEM create site dialog select blueprint
  • Click Next –>¬†select initial languages. [Note:- This is a major difference in create live copy using blueprint].
    AEM create site dialog select languages
  • Click Next –> select Chapters.¬†[Note:- This option is only available¬†in creating live copy using blueprint].
    AEM create site dialog select chapters
  • Click Next –> specify¬†below ¬†details
    • Site Owner: select¬†an existing user from drop-down as Site owner.
    • Live Copy: Uncheck this check-box to¬†create a static copy of the blueprint.
    • Rollout Configs: specify Roll out configurations, how you want you modify your live copies when content in source or blueprint website changes.
      Note- This we will cover in next tutorial.
      AEM create site dialog select owner
  • Click Next –>¬†Click Create Site.
    AEM create site using blueprint in MSM

You have successfully create a new live copy from blueprint.

For more details Visit Adobe official documentation.

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