I currently have a working Drupal Commerce site up and running. This site is on a godaddy / cpanel server. This site is on an addon domain and sits in the following server directory:


I have the modules / configuration working well and want to use this base code to operate a second Commerce site, primarily to reduce my base code maintenance. (I am fairly new to Drupal and have built two sites for our family's small business. Pretty fun :)

I read a ton about setting up multi-sites that convinced me it would be fairly straightforward. Here's what I have done:

  • Created a new database on the server. Assigned my "user" to that database with all admin privledges
  • Created a new directory under the working Drupal Commerce site home/.../public_html/xxxxx.com/sites/siteY.com

  • Pointed my "addon" domain to the Document Root above

  • Copied my default.settings.php into /public_html/xxxxx.com/sites/siteY.com
  • Renamed to settings.php with the database login information
  • Set my /siteY.com directory and settings.php to "777" permissions

When I navigate to "siteY.com", I keep getting a 403 error:

Forbidden You don't have permission to access / on this server. Additionally, a 500 Internal Server Error error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

If I navigate to "siteY.com/install.php, I get a different permissions error msg:

Internal Server Error

The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.

Please contact the server administrator at webmaster@ to inform them of the time this error occurred, and the actions you performed just before this error.

More information about this error may be available in the server error log.

Additionally, a 500 Internal Server Error error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

Is it an issue to create a multisite from an add-on domain? What am I missing here? Should I jump ship and use the "Domain Access" module?

2 Answers 2


Solved## Successful installation completed :)

When setting the Directory Root for the "multisite" SiteY.com addon domain, I got it wrong.

Incorrect: home/.../public_html/xxxxx.com/sites/siteY.com

Correct: home/.../public_html/xxxxx.com/

With the correct option, you point to the site that contains the code based you want to pull from, as well as the index.php file.

I don't fully get the mechanics at play here, but am thankful to be on the other side.

  • Consider how the site is served - it always comes from index.php, which lives in the root. index.php bootstraps the site, and part of that process involves working out which site it is loading. Once it knows the site then the sites folder comes into play and it loads settings.php from there. (Some details omitted for simplicity). Commented May 31, 2016 at 16:13

After migrating my site from an old hosting account to Linux cPanel hosting with GoDaddy, the site was working temporarily and then suddenly throwing 403 error the next morning. I had not made any changes to the files. After reading Alfred Armstrong's comment below, I checked the Drupal root directory for the index.php file ... somehow it had been changed to index.htm. No idea what happened here unless someone on the GoDaddy side opened and re-saved the file. I renamed to .php and site is up again. Very strange but thanks for pointing me to the solution!

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