Steps to Publishing / Uploading Your Dreamweaver Site
- To publish your website, start up the Site Manager again. To do this, click “Site | Manage Sites…”, that is, click on the “Site” menu followed by the “Manage Sites…” item on the menu that appears. In the dialog box that appears, click on your website’s name, then the “Edit…” button.
- The dialog box you encountered when you first set up your website appears. Click “Next…” until you come to the screen with the message “How do you want to connect to your remote server?” In the first part of the tutorial, we selected “None”. We will now change it to the actual values we need for uploading (publishing) your web page. In the drop down box, select “FTP”.
- Basically you will need to enter the information that your web host provided you when you first signed up for a web hosting account. Web hosts typically provide you with a whole bunch of details about your account when you first sign up. Among these is something known as your “FTP address”. FTP, or File Transfer Protocol, is the usual means by which you transfer your web pages from your own computer to your web host’s computer. Transferring your pages from your computer to your web host’s computer is known as “publishing” or “uploading” your pages.
In the empty box for “What is the hostname or FTP address of your Web server?” enter the FTP address that your web host gave you. If you have your own domain and are hosted on a commercial web host, this address is typically your domain name prefixed by “ftp”. For example, if your domain is “example.com”, many web hosts set up your FTP address as “ftp.example.com”. Check the email you received from your web host for more details, or ask them if you cannot find the details. If the address is indeed “ftp.example.com”, enter that in the box here.
- To answer “What folder on the server do you want to store your files in?”, check the message from your web host again. Some web hosts tell you that you need to place your web pages in a folder called “www”. Others require you to place them in a “public_html” directory. Still others say that you are to place your files in the default directory that you see when you connect by FTP.
If your web host tells you to simply upload the files when you connect via FTP, leave the box blank. Otherwise if they tell you that you need to publish your files in a “www” directory or some other folder name, enter that folder name in the box given. If the host does not mention this at all, chances are that you can simply leave the box blank.
- Enter your FTP user name or login name into the box for “What is your FTP login?”. Again, this information has to be supplied by your web host.
- Enter your password in the box for “What is your FTP password?”. Get your password from your web host if you don’t already know it. If you don’t want to have to keep entering your password every time you publish your page, you can leave the “Save” checkbox activated. Otherwise, if you are sharing your computer with others and don’t want Dreamweaver to save your password, you can uncheck the box.
- If you like, you can click the “Test Connection” button to check that you have entered all the information correctly. When you are finished, click “Next…” and “Done” to complete the configuration.
- Finally, to publish your website, click “Site | Put”. When Dreamweaver pops out a message asking you whether it should “Put dependent files?” answer “Yes”. This merely means that it is to upload things like your images and CSS files that are required by your web pages.
Testing the Web Page
Before you proceed further, you need to test the version of the web page you have uploaded. This way, you will know whether you’ve made any mistake when entering your details earlier.
Start up your browser. Type the URL (web address) of your website. This is the address that you typed into the “HTTP address” field earlier. For example, type “http://www.example.com” if that is your URL.
If you have entered the FTP details correctly, you should see the page you created earlier in your web browser.
If you get an error like “No DNS for http://www.example.com” or “Domain not found”, it probably means that your domain name has not yet propagated to your ISP. Put simply, this means that you probably only just bought your domain name. It takes time for a new domain name to be recognized around the world (usually 2 or more days), so it’s possible that your ISP has not yet updated its name servers to recognize your new domain. Some web hosts give you a temporary address which you can use to access your website in meantime. If you have that, use the temporary address to check that your site has been uploaded properly. Otherwise, you’ll just have to wait.
If you get an error like “404 File Not Found” or you get your web host’s preinstalled default page, you may need to go back and check that you have entered the correct folder in answer to the question “What folder on the server do you want to store your files in?”. It is possible that you did not specify the correct directory on your website to publish your web page.
To fix the error, simply click “Site | Manage Sites…” and “Edit” and click the “Next…” button till you get to the appropriate screen to modify.
If you get no errors at all, but see the page that you’ve designed earlier, congratulations! You’ve created and uploaded your first web page. It may be a rudimentary page but you have successfully walked through all the essential stages of designing and uploading a web page.