Liferay portal is known to have great multi-tenancy support. We know that we can have many independent sites within a single installation of Liferay. This is known "multi-tenancy support". There are two ways to achieve it - Organizations and Communities, and generally people are confused among these two. Lets draw a line among these two:
- The users of the portal do not fit in any hierarchy. They are like an ad-hoc group of people and join or leave the group at any point of time.
- There is some function or area of interest which cuts across the entire structure of the portal.
- The users of the portal fit in some sort of hierarchy like the Company-Department-Team.
- When a user and the group has very tight coupling, for example, the user cannot join or leave the group at his/her will very easily.
- When you have some kind of delegation chain in the hierarchy.
- When you want the admin of the group to manage the member's profile.
So, when we've got the line between Organization and Communities, it becomes easier to decide which one to use. Just analyze the scenario.
If we just have to create a website with pages, content and some applications, with no specific access rules and which can be accessed by group of users of the site, then no doubt communities is the best solution.
In addition, if you want to organize users, we should use Organizations, in case.
To Conclude, we can say:
Communities: Communities are basically a way to have groups of pages that can display contents and applications.
Organizations: In Organizations, user can be organized in hierarchy of organizations.