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In Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training, Adobe Certified Instructor James Williamson explores the tools and techniques of Dreamweaver CS5, Adobe's web design and development software. This course covers both the ins and outs of Dreamweaver, as well as recommended best practices for crafting new web sites and files, the fundamentals of HTML and CSS, and how to ensure clean and accessible code. The course also includes how to use tools in Dreamweaver to create and style web pages, manage multiple sites, and add user interactivity with widgets and scripting. Exercise files are included with the course.
In this movie we're going to talk about adding remote servers to your Dreamweaver site in preparation for uploading your site to a live server. Remote servers can be added to your Dreamweaver's site at any time during the development process, and may be deleted, modified or reassigned at any time. Adobe has made some welcome changes to their Site Setup dialog box and one of those changes is the ability to add multiple servers to your site. Let's open up the Site Setup dialog box and walk through the process of adding your remote servers. So I've defined the 16_04 folder as my root directory.
But what we're really interested in here is our Site Setup dialog box. So for this particular exercise, we really won't be opening any files. Now you can access your site definition in a couple of different ways. One would be to go up to the menu and go to Sites > Manage Sites. You can go to the Application toolbar, find the Site pulldown menu and choose Manage Sites. Or my favorite, you can go over to the Files panel and simply double-click the name of your current site. That's a very fast and easy way to go in and manage your site setup.
So in the categories on the left-hand side, I'm going to click on Servers and I can see at the moment that I don't have any active servers whatsoever. Now the cool thing about Dreamweaver CS5 is that we can add as many servers as we want. So if you have a site that's going to be uploaded to several different places online, or if you have a production and a QA server, you can go ahead and add those and make different ones your active server depending upon when you need to do your uploading. Okay, to add a new server, I'm just going to go right down here and click the plus symbol to add a new one.
That's going to bring up my server dialog box and what I find really interesting about this, there are two tabs, the Basic and the Advanced, and the Advanced has less options than Basic does. All right, so the first thing it wants us to do is name our server and you can name this anything you want. I recommend naming it something that's going to be descriptive. In this case, I'm going to type in remote. If it were a production server or a QA server or a testing server, I would also probably indicate that with the server name. Now Dreamweaver can connect to your site to various protocols. You'll notice that the default is FTP and that's pretty much the standard protocol for most web hosting companies.
If you grab the pulldown menu, notice there's also a Secure FTP, Local/Network, which you would use to transfer files locally, or if your web hosting server was part of your local network, and then couple of other options. There is WebDav and RDS. Well, those are fairly specialized managed environments and your webmaster or IT person will let you know if you need to use those protocols. Well, I'm going to choose FTP, because that's the protocol that the web hosting company for Explore California uses for its file transfers. Now at this point, I'm going to be covering some settings that require you to have a current web hosting account to access.
Each hosted account is going to have its own specific information. So I'll be discussing the options in this dialog box and how your account information is likely to be used within this dialog. However, I feel that I need to mention that every account is different and the settings that you receive from your host or internal web master may not match the types of settings that I'm describing. If not, contact either your hosting company support or your webmaster and a quick conversation about your sites account information should be all that's required to correctly setup your remote server within Dreamweaver, okay.
So I'm going to choose FTP and I'm going to type in my FTP address. Now this is either going to start with an FTP protocol. So it might be ftpyoursite.com or in some cases you can even type in the web address itself. www.yoursite.com.org, whatever. This is the information that you're going to be getting from your hosting company. Next, you're going to be entering in a username, and I'm just going to go ahead and type in my username from my site and again, this is the information that you're going to get from your hosting company or from your webmaster.
And finally, I'm going to enter in my password. Now you can choose to have Dreamweaver save this password or not. If you're on a shared machine with a lot of other people using it, you might not want to save that information. But if it's your local machine or if you're working in a collaborative environment where a lot of you guys need access to the server, you might want to save it so that you don't have to enter the information every single time you connect to your remote server. Now I'm going to go ahead and test my server connection. And if you've entered in the information correctly, Dreamweaver is going to give you a message that says Dreamweaver connected to your web server successfully, awesome! I'm going to go ahead and click OK.
And I notice that Dreamweaver was actually filling some stuff out for me at this point. You'll notice that my web URL resolves down here to www.explorecalifornia.org. I didn't type that in. Dreamweaver connected to my server, found that information, and filled that in for me. I certainly could have done it myself, but in this case it was really helpful to have Dreamweaver do that for me. Now I do have a space for root directory? If you're on a shared server and you have a specific directory for that particular site, you want enter in that root directory there so that you weren't uploading your site to the wrong directory.
Again, if you're unsure of that information, you can get that from your web hosting company or your internal webmaster. Now I do want to discuss a couple of the options in the Advanced settings. If I click on Advanced, I notice that there're a couple of options here that I really want to talk about. Number one, this little checkbox right here, Automatically upload files to server on Save. I recommend never checking that box, because if you're working locally in Dreamweaver and you make a change to the page and you save it, well, if that box is checked, Dreamweaver is automatically going to upload it to your remote server for you.
Now that sounds like a huge time saver, but what if you're making incremental changes and some of those changes might break your page, that means that your site could be down and you wouldn't even be aware of it, because Dreamweaver is just sort of doing that behind-the-scenes. So only have that selected if you really, really, really want that. Now another thing down here is the Testing Server. If you're working on dynamic sites, where you have PHP, ColdFusion or ASP or .NET or something driving your site, you can choose the Testing Server Model. That way Dreamweaver knows which server or model you're working with and it will upload those files to the server when you preview your pages so that it can be tested within the server environment.
But neither of those really applies to us for this one. So I'm just going to go ahead and click Save. Now before I click Save, I want to mention one more thing. If you don't have a web hosting account yet and you haven't signed up for one, and you still want to test the functionality that we're going to be doing in the next couple of movies, you could if you wanted to create a folder on your hard drive. It could be in the Desktop. It could be in a project folder, wherever you really wanted to put it. And if you wanted to use that folder to sort of act as your remote server, just so you can have a place to upload and download files and test out those capabilities, well, back in the Basic section, you could change this to Local/Network and if you do that, all you have to do is browse out to that particular folder on your hard drive.
Now that's not going to be a live Web server, obviously, but at least it's going to give you the ability to test some of the functionality that we're going to be working with. All right, I'm going to hit Save andI notice that it's added a server for me. It tells me the protocol that I'll be using, and notice that I can choose here to make it a Remote Server or a Testing Server. Okay, so what's the difference? Well, once again, back to working with dynamic files. Now if you're working on a blog, you're more likely going to either have a local server to test on or a remote server that isn't your live server.
That way you can test any of your edits. You can test the processing and make sure everything is correct before uploading it to your live site. In that case you could set up multiple servers and have one act as the testing server, and have one as they act as the remote server, and you can change them back-and-forth. You can stack three or four servers in there and depending upon the circumstances, open up this dialog box and choose which one you want to be remote or the live server, and choose which one you want to use for testing purposes. All right, I'm going to go ahead and save this. And now our site has a remote server. It's set up and it's ready to help us upload files and manage files between our local and remote environments.
So in our next movie, we'll take a look at using our remote server to upload files.
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