One of the things to look forward to in Moodle 2.2 (release date is December 2011) is “Multi-Tenancy” which will set the stage for some really awesome developments within and on Moodle. From the Development Tracker page for the feature [http://tracker.moodle.org/browse/MDL-28946],
Multi-tenancy is the ability to have multiple virtual Moodle sites running on one copy of Moodle.
Example use case: A commercial training company create Moodle courses and wants to sell training services to multiple customers (eg companies). They do not want to run a whole Moodle for every customer because they want easy management and reporting, yet they also don’t want users from one customer seeing users from another.
Each customer can manage their own users, as well as having a custom frontpage and a custom theme, enabling them to have what seems like a whole Moodle site each.
Originally this was part of the cohort plans (see http://docs.moodle.org/dev/Site-wide_groups) but was never implemented as part of that.
Quite literally, it will create a huge efficiency in how a Moodle site is run and managed across groups. Rather than 10 sites for 10 different clients all using the same tools spread out across multiple servers, a company or Moodle manager can just run one instance and all clients benefit from increased efficiency and lower costs for hosting, managing, etc.
Right now many of the free hosting sites provide a new Moodle installation for each person that registers, under multi-tenancy there’d be no need! How cool is that?
Read more about the features coming in Moodle 2.2 at http://docs.moodle.org/dev/Roadmap.