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Why Microsoft Front Page is a great program?

FrontPage is a great program, but boy, what a pain in the backside to maintain!  FrontPage extensions?  Whoever invented that system should be taken out behind the woodshed.

FrontPage extensions, in simple terms, are the server-side scripts that are proprietary to FrontPage and run the “special effects” of your website.  Rollovers, form processing, shared borders, etc. etc. are all enabled by a set of server scripts that make it all work on the visitors browser.  Without these special Microsoft scripts, the bells and whistles of your website will not work. 

Your hosting company needs to install these scripts for each individual IP address!  It never occurred to them to build this system as a master script.  If our company has 5,000 customers running FrontPage websites, we will need to install 5,000 different instances of FrontPage extensions!! 

Now, don’t get me wrong: a FrontPage website can be very beneficial to someone who has limited experience building websites, and doesn’t want to learn HTML and the other disciplines you need to know.  But if you’re going to invoke these extensions, you need to know how to manage your website so as not to corrupt the scripts.  And corrupting the scripts is very easy to do. 

Follow these few rules and you should have no problem with FrontPage on an Apache system:

  1. When you initially load your website to your host server, use the “Publish” feature only.  No FTPing.
  2. Do your editing live on the server.  Open your website off the live host server rather than the local machine.  We recommend this because the publish feature on FrontPage is a very unreliable process, and involves extra steps that are wholly unnecessary.  When editing your website, do your edits, hit “Ctrl-S” and Voila!  Your work is saved on the server automatically for the world to see!   (Backup your website on your local machine by running the “Publish” process from the host server to your local machine.)
  3. People say you can FTP individual items to your site (JPG ../images and the like) and that’s true, but you are inviting trouble by doing so.  If all you want to do is upload an image, just insert it into the table or position you wish, hit “Ctrl-S” and it will be uploaded for you automatically. 

There are other tips for maintaining a trouble-free FrontPage website by visiting

Phil Hawkins - 1A Web Hosting. - 


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