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Subdomain Folders Inside Domain Folders?


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Maybe this question will answer itself like the last one--maybe.


Assuming it doesn't, though, here's the issue: While I note that sub-subdomain folders are placed loose in "public_html" on my FTP client, I am wondering whether--and how--to follow the same protocol on my hard-drive "Web Pages" folder.


The point is, if I do follow this convention, I am left with folder names such as "common_sense.issues.nation_and_world.squort.com"--which clearly does not fit within the 31-character limit for document/folder names.


And if I don't, will it lead to compatibility problems with the corresponding folders/files on CPanel?

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Hi again Boojum, I think you are just confused here on how to "view" your pages when they are on your hard drive. You do not need start off with the folder on your hard drive having the same name as the domain name, just the sub-folders.


To start off viewing "offline" using IE click on FILE and then OPEN and click the BROWSE button. Now locate your hard drive and the folder that contains you main page and open that html page.


This "should" display the contents of your web pages from the hard drive.


See if this clears the problems you are having.

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Although the procedure is slightly different because I have a Mac, I do indeed know how to view pages from my hard disk. Nor is my concern with the name of the overall folder--as its name, "Web Pages", not "squort.com", should attest.


The problem is with the subfolders containing my subdomains.


Simply: Shall I (on my hard drive) put the sub-subfolders inside the subfolders--even though this does not correspond to the way CPanel placed them on the server?


And if not: How do I circumvent the 31-character limit in naming said sub-subfolders?

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I don't use a Mac so someone who knows them may need to help.


I don't have to name my folders on my windows machine the same as the domain and I view all my different sites just fine. I just create a folder, say "WAST" for my kids swim team under a main folder called "VENIT". When I open the index.htm under WAST my pages display just fine. (www.venitsports.com/wast)


As you can see above the actual domain does not match the main folder name.

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I'm not really sure if MadmadMCP's advice applies here, inasmuch as it refers to sub-folders but not to subdomains.


My question again: Should I put sub-subfolders corresponding to sub-subdomains inside the corresponding subfolders for the specified subdomains?


Otherwise, I end up having to name sub-subfolders things like "common_sense.issues.nation_and_world.squort.com"--which is not in fact possible given the 31-character limit for file/folder names.


Any moderators care to comment?

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I don't have a Mac and don't know what program you are using to create your site. Using a program like Dreamweaver it usually handles all of that for you. Since subdomains are really just folders in your account I would tend to have the file structure more like it is in CPanel, i.e.



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That's actually just the problem: CPanel does not configure the sub-subdomain folder as, e.g., "public_html/nation_and_world/issues/common_sense" but keeps them loose in the main folder, as, e.g., "public_html/common_sense.issues.nation_and_world".


For what it's worth, I do not use or have access to a WYSIWYG HTML editing program; I use BBEdit Lite for the Mac--which means I do it all "by hand."


Intuition suggests that I either disregard the CPanel structure and place the sub-subdomain folders inside the corresponding subdomain folders on my hard drive, or in fact look into restructuring the server-end structure via CPanel.


If I can't do one of these things, I will run into the 31-character-limit problem, as following the loose-in-the-main-folder structure current in CPanel will require the creation of sub-subdomain folders with names like "common_sense.issues.nation_and_world.squort.com".


Verily, I call upon the aid of the Head Guru himself, if he will but deign to offer it. (All right, Boojum; that's enough Paradise Lost for one day.)

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Er ...


Please note that the reply doesn't actually have to come from the Head Guru--just anyone who's well versed in handling subdomains and CPanel.


After all, before all is said and done, I may need to go back into CPanel and reconfigure it so my sub-subdomain folders go inside the corresponding subdomain folders.


Can some subdomain maven please comment?

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I can't seem to get a reply to this question, so I'm reluctantly concluding that I didn't make it clear enough; hence the following rephrase.


The issue: When I created subdomain, sub-subdomain and sub-sub-subdomain folders in "public_html" via CPanel, they were placed loose in the folder at the same level.

The problem: If I match this configuration on my hard disk (in my "Web Pages" folder), I have to use folder names like "common_sense.issues.nation_and_world.squort.com" for some of the sub-sub-subdomains. And that brings me up against the famed 31-character limit for file/folder names.


The question: Shall I (a) place my sub-sub-subdomain folders inside their respective subdomain folders, etc., on the server via CPanel or my FTP client? and/or (:) do the same for said folders on my hard disk?


I have gotten the impression that the server-side "public_html" folder should generally match the hard disk-side "Web Pages" (or the like) folder. But if I make the latter match the former now, I will not be able to assign the proper full names to each sub-sub-subfolder.


This issue is really delaying my site restructuring--someone please help!

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I think your not getting an answer either because noone understands what you are after, or we dont see the same thing you se in your file manager.


When I create a subdomain it puts it under my public_html folder, if I create a folder within that subdomain it puts it in the folder for the subdomain. Nothing is just randomly placed under public_html. I open punblic html and inside it \I see my subdomain folder, I open the subdomain folder and inside it I see whatever folder I create inside the subdomain.


One of two things is happening here, either we are over simplifying it, or you are overcomplicating it, we just gotta find out which one.


I have a two subdomains and folders under each subdomain, this is how it looks on my hard drive


main folder (index of my site)


---some files

---subdomain 1

------folder within sub 1

---------files in the subfolder

------another folder in sub 1

---subdomain 2

------folder within sub 2

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Thanks, Mike.


It appears I misconfigured the subdomains on CPanel after all, not having fully understood the procedure. I have now reconfigured them, and we shall soon see how well it worked.


Again, thanks for the assist.

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Maybe this will help too.

If you try to save a file in BBEdit or Explorer for OS X, for example, you will still hit the old 31-character limit in the “Save As…” dialog box. That’s because (I am told) Apple has yet to provide third-party developers with the proper development tools required to implement support for the feature.


The use of very long file names is therefore limited, so far, to the Finder and those other OS X applications that support them (such as Apple’s own TextEdit). However, as you are surely aware, the fact that the Finder supports them obviously means that you can edit the name of a file created by, say, BBEdit and make it longer than 31 characters. What happens then when you try to open the file again with BBEdit (which doesn’t support such long names)? Well, OS X uses a clever — if not particularly pretty — trick in which the extra portion of the name is replaced by a unique string of characters that looks like a 2-byte hexadecimal number (such as “#D9CB”), appended to the beginning portion of the file name. This shortened file name is the one that will appear within BBEdit. But, when you save the file, its longer file name is preserved.


Here is the full article


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Grr! Arrgh!


I went back into CPanel to restructure the subdomains, followed the procedure to place sub-subdomains within subdomains and so forth--and found that CPanel had still placed the sub-subdomain folders loose in public_html.


Using my FTP client, I dragged-and-dropped the sub-folders into the appropriate folders, so that the file hierarchy now matches that on my hard drive.


The problem is, to open the files locally (on my hard drive) requires a path such as "nation-and-world/issues/common-sense", which does not correspond to subdomain paths as I understand them.


On the other hand, keeping the "flat" arrangement initially applied by CPanel, I would have to have a folder named "common-sense.issues.nation-and-world" (not to mention a file named "common-sense.issues.nation-and-world/index.html), which doesn't fit within the 31-character limit.


I should also mention that I use Mac OS 9, so even the Finder limits folder/file names to 31 characters.


My question, then: Will my manual rearrangement work, and will my pages be accessible via a path as described above (i.e.: "nation-and-world/issues/common-sense") which will apply both to local (hard drive) and web access?

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TCH Andy:


If I understand you correctly, CPanel did configure the folders properly, with loose folders such as "nation-and-world.squort.com", "issues.nation-and-world.squort.com" and "common-sense.issues.nation-and-world.squort.com" all at the same level on public_html.


And that would mean I should restore that hierarchy, and make sure my hard drive reflects it.


But how, then, do I get around this 31-character-limit problem in OS 9?

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TCH Andy:


My site is about to undergo reorganization and tremendous expansion. I will be adding many pages to various sections in coming weeks, and given the multifarious nature of the site, subdomains are the system of division that I think will work best for me. Also, I understand it is easier to find listings for subdomains than for subdirectories on search engines.


And that leaves only the matter of actually implementing them.


There must be some way around this 31-character problem; otherwise, no one would be able to use sub-subdomains without using abbreviations that would defeat the purpose of giving descriptive names to pages.



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I also use a Mac under OS 9 and code by hand using BBEdit. I don't do a whole lot with subdomains -- I've only set up one subdomain and used it for some miscellaneous small things. But I'm really not understanding the problem here. For me, my subdomain (fire.nthuleen.com) is just a folder called "fire" in the top level of my public_html directory. So on my hard drive, I have a "web pages" folder, and inside that a folder called "fire" -- inside "fire" is the index.html page that comes up when I access fire.nthuleen.com. But each individual page and folder just has the short name, like "fire" or "index.html" -- not fire.nthuleen.com or whatever it is you're doing. The dotted names are only used in the actual URL in the browser, at least the way I do things.


In short, I never run into the 31-character limit because I just use folders. I then upload to my public_html directory using Interarchy, and all is fine. (I hardly ever use CP except to manage account features, so maybe you're trying to do something I'm unfamiliar with.) Really, a subdomain is just a folder, and it's up to Apache to redirect the subdomain to the folder, right? So keeping folder names on your hard drive seems to make perfect sense to me.


Maybe I'm not helping, because I really have no idea what a sub-sub-domain would even be. I have directories inside my subdomain (e.g. fire.nthuleen.com/fire/images), but the slash is needed, there's no way to get there without a directory signifier.


That probably didn't help, but it's what I do, anyway.

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My primary question here is this:


I know the subdomain folders go inside the public_html folder and the corresponding Web Pages/equivalent folder on the user's hard drive. And I know those folders only need be named for their subdomains.


The concern, for me, has to do with nesting of folders for the sub-subdomains inside those for the subdomains to which they belong. It would seem the logical hierarchical arrangement, and yet I am not sure it is correct.


Could someone who has, preferably, some direct experience with sub-subdomains please comment?

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I think it has all been explained above, but it may not be clear, let me try again.


You domain name is "squort.com" and the files go in your "/public_html/" directory


A subdomain would be "subdomain.domain.com" or "nation_and_world.squort.com" and the files would go in the "/public_html/nation_and_world" directory


You have then tried to create a subdomain called "sub.dom.ain" or "common_sense.issues.nation_and_world" ie. there are full stops, or dots in the subdomain name. Hence as the case above, this will go into a single directory below the /public_html/ directory


What you are trying to do is create a subdomain "common_sense" of a subdomain "issues" of a subdomain "nation_and_world", i.e. "subdomain.subdomain.subdomain.domain.com" This is not possible under the cpanel system.


The issue of the 31-character limit, is your operating system. As far as I am aware, there is no way round that limit.

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TCH Andy et al.:


I am indeed trying to create not just one subdomain inside another, but in fact a subdomain inside a subdomain inside a subdomain. And not just once, but several times!


As far as I know from my reading on subdomains, it is possible to create sub-subdomains and so forth. Whether it is possible to do so in CPanel or not (and if not, why not?), it seems to me that it can be done, and has been on a few sites I've visited--admittedly not many.


What I need someone knowledgeable to tell me is whether the sub-subdomain directories should in fact be placed inside the corresponding subdomain directories, as seems logical, or should be kept at the root level of public_html.


And if the latter, is there some workaround--as I'd certainly expect there to be--for this 31-character-directory-name issue?

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Boojum, I am still unclear on exactly what you are trying to accomplish here but I'll give it one more shot. You are working with two separate protocols here and you are trying to get them to function in a similar manner.


The problem is a 31 character filename limitation built into the OS 9 operating system. The Internet can handle URL's greater than 31 characters in length.


So, what you need to do is write to the lowest common denominator...meaning you can't get around the 31 character limit. Change your coding to fall within it. Instead of using full descriptive names for your sub-domains use abbreviations or limit each sub-sub-sub domain to 3 or four characters per level.

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It is not possible to set up subdomain111.subdomain11.subdomain1.domain.com in cpanel. Why? my guess would be there has been insufficient requirement for the programmers of cpanel to put it to the top of their list.


If you could do it so that you had subdomain111.subdomain11.subdomain1.domain.com with each of these being seperate subdomains, then the file structure would be


as you suggest, and require.


However, in cpanel, all the subdomains (since it does not allow subdomains within subdomains) will be off the /public_html/ directory.


And if the latter, is there some workaround--as I'd certainly expect there to be--for this 31-character-directory-name issue?
As Madmanmcp says, this is a limit of your operating system, for which there is not a workround unless you wish to either

1. change your operating system

2. use subdomains with less that 31 characters (as Madmanmcp suggested)

3. use folders instead of subdomains (I'm certain it makes no difference to search engines anyway)

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TCH Andy/MadManMCP:


First, thanks for your continuing efforts to advise me on this issue.


But please understand that there are certain procedures I have definitely decided, for my own reasons, will best serve my interests. One of these is creating the subdomain structure I have mapped. Another is avoiding artificially abbreviating subdomain names to avoid the 31-character limit.


I would ideally prefer to set up the sub-sub-subdomain directories inside the sub-subdomain directories, and so forth--as I have done manually via my FTP client. This would keep directory names down to three or fewer words and eliminate the 31-character issue altogether. However, I am not sanguine about the likelihood that this process will work correctly in conjunction with CPanel. (Does anyone reading this know?)


Troublesome and tedious, but feasible, appears the idea of setting up both subdirectories and subdomains, and redirecting traffic for the latter into the former. This would allow me to use folders on my Mac OS 9 hard drive without running up against Baskin's 31 Characters, while retaining CPanel's fully named subdomain directories, which are not subject to the limit, as URL destinations.


Could someone who actually has specific expertise on subdomains, if such is available here, please comment and advise?

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Boojum, I am afraid what we have been telling you is the way it is and there is no way around it besides what we have told you.


The internet uses a domain name with the format xx.yy.zz , where:

zz = TLD or Top Level domain, .com .net for example

yy = domain microsoft, CNN, or squort for example

xx = subdomain www, email, or nation_and_world for example


there is no sub-subdomain. It is not defined in the DNS protocol as far as I know.

See http://webopedia.internet.com/TERM/s/subdomain.html


you will have to use folders for the different levels you are trying to create.



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Finally the true essence of the issue emerges: It appears that, thanks to CPanel, I will now have either to rename my subdomains so they have 31-character (or fewer) names and can be placed loose in /public_html/ or rethink my entire site layout.


I suppose now is when to hope CPanel will at least let me set up subdirectories within my primary subdomains; else the entire site structure can be gently and ceremoniously deposited on the nearest landfill.

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