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Once you've completed and tested your PHP-based site on your local computer, you can deploy it to your remote site. I'll start by showing you how to configure the remote site, and how to set it up to work with the remote site over FTP, or File Transfer Protocol. For the purpose of this demonstration, I'm using an FTP server called FileZilla. It's a Windows-based, free FTP server which you can get from the web, and it's very easy to set up and install. I've configured a single user on the server.
The name of the user is ftpuser, and I'll show you that under Shared folders, it's pointing to a folder named remote, under my web root. So for demonstration purposes, I'm working with the same installation of Apache, MySQL, and PHP, as I am for my local server, but I'm pointing to a different directory. I'll close the User configurationscreen in FileZilla and then minimize it to keep it running. Now, if you're working on Mac OS X, you can instead use the FTP capability that's built into that operating system.
Go into your System Preferences, to Sharing, to File Sharing, and then under Options, you'll be able to turn on the FTP capability. Or if you'd like to apply these skills to an actual remote site, just get the FTP credentials from your Internet Service Provider, or your web server administrator. I'm working with a site named 09_deployremote. I'll go to the menu and choose Site > Manage Sites, and then click Edit to look at the Site preferences.
I'll go to the Servers category on the left. When I first configured the site, I created a local server definition. Now I'm going to add a new server definition for the remote server. I'll click plus, and I'll name this Remote Server. You can connect using a variety of protocols, but almost all the time you're going to use FTP, or File Transfer Protocol. The FTP Address can either be the DNS name or the IP address of your remote server. I'm going to use the IP address, 127.0.0.1.
Then I'll type in my username, ftpuser, and the password that I created with it. Then I'll test. If your FTP server is running, you should connect to your server automatically. If you have any troubles, the first thing to try is to go into More Options and try selecting Use Passive FTP, and then click Test again. If you're still having trouble, check Adobe's web site. Go to the Dreamweaver Support site, and type in connecting with FTP, and you'll find a knowledge-based article that should help.
My username is already connected to the correct directory, so I don't need to put any information here under Root Directory. I'm also setting the web URL to point to the remote folder under the localhost. For a remote FTP server, you won't use this value, but it's a good idea to have it be accurate. Then I'll click Advanced, and I'll check to make sure that I have this option, Maintain synchronization information, selected. This will allow me to easily synchronize my files between the client and the remote site.
And as with the testing server, I'll set the Server model to PHP MySQL. I'm not going to turn on the other options. This one, Automatically upload files to server on Save, will cause all changes to be uploaded immediately upon saving them. I typically don't like to do that. You can, if you like, use the file checkout capability. This results in placing file locks on files on your remote server, so that only one user can check them out at a time.
I'll click Save, and then I'll check to make sure that my new server is marked as the remote server and not as the resting server, and I'll click Save. Then I'll click Done, and I'll go to my Files panel. Right now, I'm looking at the Local View, that is the set of files that I've been managing through Dreamweaver already. I'll switch to the remote server and show you that that folder is empty, and I'll show you the physical folder on the server, which on Windows is wamp/www/remote, and show that it's starting off as an empty file also.
If this folder doesn't already exist on your local computer, you should create it now, and then you'll be ready to upload files to your server and synchronize the files between the client and the remote server whenever you need to.
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