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Dreamweaver CS3 Essential Training
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Defining a site


From:

Dreamweaver CS3 Essential Training

with Garrick Chow

Video: Defining a site

In this movie, we're going to take a look at the very important process of defining your website. Now, we could just jump right in here, and click HTML under the Create New column here, to create a new page, and start building a web page that way. But that would be a foolish way to start, especially if you're going to be creating a site with even just a few pages in it. In order to manage your site properly, you need to let {italic}Dreamweaver {plain}know where on your hard drive all of your site's files, folders, pages, images, videos, and so on are going to be located. Basically, you want to have one all inclusive folder on your computer that contains everything that's going to be used in your site. This all inclusive folder is called your "site folder".
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  1. 1m 12s
    1. Welcome
      1m 12s
  2. 21m 0s
    1. HTML vs. XHTML
      3m 4s
    2. What is CSS?
      3m 48s
    3. What is XML?
      2m 11s
    4. What is DHTML?
      1m 9s
    5. What is JavaScript?
      1m 23s
    6. File naming conventions
      3m 22s
    7. What is an index page?
      6m 3s
  3. 46m 18s
    1. Setting up your workspace
      2m 39s
    2. The Welcome screen
      4m 11s
    3. Windows and Mac differences
      3m 18s
    4. The Insert bar
      4m 38s
    5. The Property Inspector
      1m 50s
    6. The Document toolbar
      6m 6s
    7. The Document window
      9m 11s
    8. Panels and panel groups
      6m 58s
    9. Saving workspace layouts
      2m 22s
    10. Defining a default browser
      5m 5s
  4. 24m 59s
    1. Defining a site
      9m 5s
    2. File and folder management
      3m 11s
    3. Understanding path structure
      3m 17s
    4. Adding content to a site
      6m 6s
    5. Creating a site map
      3m 20s
  5. 38m 39s
    1. Creating a new blank site
      6m 0s
    2. Creating and saving a new document
      7m 54s
    3. About DOCTYPE
      3m 59s
    4. Inserting images
      9m 26s
    5. Inserting text
      3m 35s
    6. Aligning text and images
      4m 9s
    7. Inserting meta tags
      3m 36s
  6. 45m 58s
    1. Link basics
      6m 4s
    2. Linking with Point to File
      5m 18s
    3. External links
      4m 15s
    4. Creating email links
      5m 49s
    5. Named anchors
      7m 37s
    6. Linking to a file
      7m 35s
    7. Image maps
      9m 20s
  7. 1h 8m
    1. About CSS
      4m 52s
    2. Anatomy of a style sheet
      4m 10s
    3. CSS and page properties
      10m 11s
    4. Moving an internal style sheet to an external style sheet
      6m 46s
    5. The CSS Styles panel
      3m 48s
    6. CSS selectors
      2m 37s
    7. Type selectors
      12m 13s
    8. ID selectors
      10m 21s
    9. Class selectors
      5m 42s
    10. Creating rollovers with pseudo-class selectors
      7m 22s
  8. 42m 54s
    1. CSS vs. the Font tag
      2m 42s
    2. Formatting text with the Property Inspector
      8m 41s
    3. What measurement should I use?
      3m 15s
    4. Managing white space with margins, padding, and line height
      8m 34s
    5. Using font lists
      5m 45s
    6. Aligning text
      2m 47s
    7. Creating lists
      5m 8s
    8. Creating Flash text
      6m 2s
  9. 43m 19s
    1. About tables
      1m 28s
    2. Tables in Code view
      2m 36s
    3. Creating and adding content to tables
      7m 40s
    4. Changing table borders with XHTML
      5m 46s
    5. Coloring tables with XHTML and CSS
      6m 41s
    6. Aligning table content
      6m 39s
    7. Sorting tables
      3m 6s
    8. Setting table widths
      4m 48s
    9. Creating rounded-corner tables
      4m 35s
  10. 28m 22s
    1. Dreamweaver's layout tools
      3m 8s
    2. Tracing images
      4m 58s
    3. Adding AP div tags
      7m 29s
    4. Working with Layout Tables
      6m 55s
    5. Adjusting table widths and nesting tables
      5m 52s
  11. 16m 19s
    1. What is a device?
      3m 14s
    2. Attaching a printer-friendly style sheet
      3m 5s
    3. Styling for print
      7m 41s
    4. Adobe Device Central
      2m 19s
  12. 29m 54s
    1. Rollover rules
      3m 31s
    2. Creating simple rollovers
      5m 36s
    3. Creating disjointed rollovers
      7m 12s
    4. Creating navigation bars with multiple states
      9m 21s
    5. Creating Flash buttons
      4m 14s
  13. 26m 32s
    1. Viewing the code
      6m 9s
    2. Editing in Code view
      3m 0s
    3. The Code toolbar
      5m 11s
    4. Working with Code Collapse
      4m 27s
    5. The Quick Tag Editor
      2m 20s
    6. Working with snippets
      5m 25s
  14. 32m 45s
    1. About forms
      3m 23s
    2. Adding text fields
      9m 52s
    3. Adding checkboxes and radio buttons
      5m 37s
    4. Adding lists and menus
      6m 5s
    5. Submitting form results
      3m 23s
    6. Styling form elements with CSS
      4m 25s
  15. 23m 17s
    1. Opening a new browser window
      9m 38s
    2. Creating a popup message
      2m 50s
    3. Validating text fields
      2m 42s
    4. Getting more behaviors
      7m 2s
    5. Removing extensions
      1m 5s
  16. 14m 58s
    1. External image editor preferences
      3m 18s
    2. Built-in image editing tools
      3m 11s
    3. Roundtrip editing from Dreamweaver to Fireworks or Photoshop
      4m 39s
    4. Copying and pasting
      3m 50s
  17. 34m 16s
    1. Templates in action
      5m 12s
    2. Creating a new template
      6m 36s
    3. Applying templates
      3m 36s
    4. Modifying a template
      1m 40s
    5. Adding repeating regions
      3m 28s
    6. Working with repeating regions
      3m 13s
    7. Adding optional regions
      3m 34s
    8. Creating a library item
      3m 48s
    9. Modifying a library item
      3m 9s
  18. 13m 2s
    1. Using the History panel
      4m 24s
    2. Saving History steps as commands
      3m 25s
    3. Using Find and Replace
      5m 13s
  19. 14m 44s
    1. W3C accessibility guidelines
      4m 6s
    2. Accessibility preferences
      1m 29s
    3. Inserting accessible images
      3m 2s
    4. Inserting accessible tables
      2m 53s
    5. Inserting accessible form objects
      3m 14s
  20. 26m 17s
    1. About media objects
      2m 6s
    2. Linking to audio and video files
      5m 56s
    3. Embedding audio and video files
      7m 7s
    4. Setting parameters
      4m 27s
    5. Inserting Flash content
      2m 37s
    6. Inserting Flash video
      4m 4s
  21. 28m 47s
    1. Getting site reports
      3m 35s
    2. Checking links sitewide
      3m 30s
    3. Signing up with Tripod
      6m 36s
    4. Entering remote info
      4m 13s
    5. Publishing your site
      5m 41s
    6. Updating and publishing pages
      5m 12s
  22. 44s
    1. Goodbye
      44s

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Dreamweaver CS3 Essential Training
10h 22m Beginner Apr 16, 2007

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Dreamweaver CS3 Essential Training, instructor Garrick Chow delves into the many powerful features of the latest version of this powerful web design application. He covers everything from the simplest basics of using Dreamweaver CS3 to applying it to develop a fully interactive, accessible site. Garrick explains the new interface features, and demonstrates how to create, edit, manage, design, and publish a professional website with Dreamweaver CS3 and complementary applications. Exercise files accompany the training.

Subject:
Web
Software:
Dreamweaver
Author:
Garrick Chow

Defining a site

In this movie, we're going to take a look at the very important process of defining your website. Now, we could just jump right in here, and click HTML under the Create New column here, to create a new page, and start building a web page that way. But that would be a foolish way to start, especially if you're going to be creating a site with even just a few pages in it. In order to manage your site properly, you need to let {italic}Dreamweaver {plain}know where on your hard drive all of your site's files, folders, pages, images, videos, and so on are going to be located. Basically, you want to have one all inclusive folder on your computer that contains everything that's going to be used in your site. This all inclusive folder is called your "site folder".

Telling {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} where this folder is located is called "defining your site". Once {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} knows where this folder is, it'll be able to keep track of and handle all of the changes that you make to your site. This is especially important if you start moving pages, or images around once everything is linked together. Without {italic}Dreamweaver's{plain} file management capabilities, moving a single or an image to a page or folder to another could result in broken links, or missing images on several different pages throughout your entire site. And trust me, you don't want to have to go in there, and manually fix problems like that.

Ok, so, let's take a look at how we define a site. Now, for the purpose of this example, I'm going to point {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} to an already existing site. I've copied the folder 03_sitecontrol onto my desktop, so if you have access to the exercise files you can work along with me. Inside this folder is a folder called "teacloud_03". The 03 is just there so you can keep track of which chapters these files go with. We're going to be using lots of versions of this site throughout these movies. And the version I have here is the nearly completed version of the Tea Cloud site, which again is a site for a fictitious tea company. I'm just going to drag that to my desktop.

So, this will be my site folder. Your site folder is sometimes also referred to as your "local root folder". So, since I want to work with this site in {italic}Dreamweaver{plain}, I therefore need to tell {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} where this folder is. Now, in many cases you probably won't be defining a preexisting site like I'm doing here. You'll probably be creating a site from scratch. I'll be showing you how to do that at the beginning of the next chapter, but there might also be times when you end up inheriting the job of managing an existing site, or maybe you just want to move a preexisting site from another web design program into {italic}Dreamweaver.{plain} So, it's good to know how to do this as well. So, to define a site I'm going to click the {italic}Dreamweaver {plain}Site link under the Create New column. So, Create New > {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} Site. Alternately you can come up to the Site menu, and choose "New Site" from there as well if you don't have your Welcome Screen open. In either case I'm taken to this Site Definition window. Now, at the top of this window, we see a Basic tab, and an Advanced tab.

Both allow you to define your site, and end up with the same exact results. It's just that the Basic tab involves a lot more hand holding and explanation. Well, I'm here to hold your hand and explain, so we're going to switch over to the Advance tab, but don't let that word "Advanced" scare you. There's really nothing advanced here. It's just that everything here is all in one central location where as in the Basic tab you have to answer a bunch of questions, and click Next, and keep going through like that. I just prefer going through the Advanced tab and have everything in one location like this. When you're first defining your site, you're going to be working with it on your own computer. When you work on your own computer in terms of web terminology, you're working "locally".

When you're working with files on your web server, you're working with "remote files", or working "remotely". So, since I'm just starting out I'm going to plug in my "Local Info", so I'm going to make sure Local Info is selected as my category. And in here we have two important fields: "Site name", and "Local root folder". One important thing to point out about the Site name right of the bat is that the name that you enter here is for your use only on your computer only. The name you put here has nothing to do with the website when it's online. Nobody's going to see the name you put here. And you can use spaces, slashes, dashes, uppercase letters, and any special characters that you want. Just give the site a name that makes sense to you so that you'll recognize it whenever you want to call up the site to work on it. And since we're working on the Teacloud site in chapter 3 of this tutorial, I'm just going to call this teacloud 03. If you were working on a site about New Jersey waste management, you'd enter a name like NJ waste or something like that.

Ok, so there's our site name. Now, most importantly we need to tell {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} where our Local root folder is. The root folder, as I was saying earlier, is the one folder that contains your entire sites files. In this case it's the teacloud_03 folder that's now sitting on my Desktop. I'm going to browse for it by clicking this little blue folder icon here. If you're on Windows, it's a yellow folder icon. So, I'm gong to navigate out to my Desktop, and find the folder that I want to define as my site. Now, since I'm working on a Mac, I just need to click the folder once and to select it I click Choose. I've now defined that entire folder as my site folder, and {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} will now keep track of it and manage any files and folders that I place into it. Now, on Windows selecting my site folder is just a little bit different because of the way Windows is set up. So, I'm going to switch over to Windows for a moment to show you the difference.

So, here I am in the Windows version of{italic} Dreamweaver {plain}and I'm going to do the same exact thing. I'm going to create a new site by choosing Site > New Site. We're already in the Advanced tab, here. I'll just call this teacloud03 again and this time we'll browse for our Local root folder just by clicking this yellow folder icon. So, I'm out here on my Desktop, and I've already copied the 03_sitecontrol folder in here, and this teacloud_03 folder is the folder that I want to define as my site. Now, unlike the Mac side of things where you just select the folder and click "Choose", on Windows you have to open up your site folder in order to select it as your Local root folder.

So I'm going to open up teacloud_03. Now, this button down here says "Select". I can click on that, and now I've properly defined the teacloud_03 folder as my Local root folder. So, again if you're on a Mac you don't need to open the folder first to select it. Just click it once, and click Choose. On Windows you must open the folder, and then click Select to properly define your work folder. Now I'll click on OK, and our site has been defined. But that's the main difference between defining your site in Windows and defining one on a Mac, and again the differences have more to do with the operating systems themselves, rather than {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} acting differently. Ok, let's switch back to the Mac. Ok, so, now we've named our site and told {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} where the Local root folder is located. And that's all you really have to do to get started.

All of these other categories you can forget about for the moment, and we'll come back to certain categories when it becomes necessary. Now, we do have a couple of other things here on the Local Info section that you might be wondering about. First we have the Default images folder field. This is the folder where {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} places images that you add to your site. For instance, if you drag an image from your Desktop into a web page that you're designing in {italic}Dreamweaver, Dreamweaver{plain} will copy that image to your default images folder. This is actually a great feature because in earlier versions of {italic}Dreamweaver {plain}prior to {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} 8, dragging an image that wasn't in your Local root folder would get you this confusing message box about the image not being in your Local root folder, and then in might not get uploaded and yadda, yadda, yadda. Now, when you drag an image into your site {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} automatically makes a copy of it and saves it in your Default images folder.

I'll talk more about the image folder later. Next we have the choose to have our "Links relative to the Document", or to the "Site root". I'm going to get to that in a few movies from now. That's a slightly different topic and we'll talk about that shortly. We're just going to leave that at Document for now. In the HTTP address field, you can enter the web address where your site will eventually reside. This lets {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} verify links within your site, which are called absolute URLs. If you have a web address already like teacloud.com, just enter it in here. If not, just leave it the way it is. Next we have, "Use case-sensitive link checking".

With this option selected, {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} will notice if you say, used capital letters when you linked to a file, when the file was saved with say, all lowercased letters. But I should have already pounded it into your head that you should always use lowercase letters, so I'm going to leave that unchecked. And finally we have Enable cache, which as you can read for yourself, improves the speed of the Asset panel, link management and Site Mapping features. And we'll talk about those things later too. Ok, just to recap, all I really did here was to name my site in the Site name folder and located it with the Local root folder field. Everything else I left unchanged.

This really could have been a one minute process, but of course I had to get all longwinded on you and describe all these different things, but really defining your site is just naming your site and locating it on your computer. Once you're ready you can click on OK. {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} takes a moment to scan through all the files. And now I have my site defined in {italic}Dreamweaver. {plain}In the Files panel over here, you can see that up here is the name of the site I used. There's teacloud 03. If I roll over that you can see exactly where it's located, and here's the site listed in this menu here, teacloud 03. As you work with more sites here in {italic}Dreamweaver,{plain} they'll all be listed here in this menu so you can easily switch between sites. This menu also gives you access to locations on your computer, so I can jump to my different hard drives, or onto my Network if I needed to.

And we'll talk more about that in my next movie as well. And down here in the Files panel itself, I can see all the files and folders that appear in my site folder or local root folder. Those two terms are interchangeable. So, I've got abouttea, aboutus, assets, brewingtea, contactus, and so on. And if I go look at that folder out of my Desktop, sure enough I'll see those exact same files out here in this folder. So basically now that my site has been defined in {italic}Dreamweaver, {plain}I'm going to use {italic}Dreamweaver{plain} as the conduit through which I'll interact with that folder out of my desktop. That's really the best way to make sure that no problems with file management arise. I'll talk a little bit more about this in the very next movie.

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