We setup a wildcard managed path
/projects in our web application.
Is it possible to setup a root site for
In fact, you can't create a SharePoint site directly under the wildcard managed path. Managed paths cannot be both explicit and wildcard at the same time.
make the root , but that's not recommended.
/projects an explicit inclusion and create a few explicit project site collections beneath it
As an alternative, you could create a default
/projects/portfolio site and configure a redirection from
/projects to the default site in IIS, but that's also an administrative overhead. Consider the pros and cons and decide for your organisation.
The answer is yes, though not recommended. I did this on a SP 2013 site that is currently in use and has been for a few years. Though I won't post all of the article here as it is long and explanatory, this article is what I followed:
The main thing to remember is if you can take a backup of the system (easy if it is virtualized) that is best in case you mess something up (see the comments in the article). Also do it after hours because if I remember correctly, it takes down all the sites. This is because you are modifying the root element.
Here are the steps for doing it:
Yes you can.
When going to create the site collection from Central Administration you can create the managed path with the a site collection by applying the setting 'Explicit Inclusion'.
Details can be found here.