Creating your own website Part 2

Last week we had a look into the most fundamental ways to create a website on your PC using a program called FrontPage which is available as part of Microsoft Office or FrontPage Express which comes as a free option to Internet Explorer available from www.microsoft.com.

I’m going to assume that by this stage you have registered your site name online (e.g. www.chrisholgate.co.uk) and that you have made a simple site to put onto the Internet.If you missed either of these tutorials then please go to www.thisissouthdevon.co.uk where you will be able view any past articles.

This week we’re going to look at how to actually put your page onto the Internet using a file transfer method known as FTP (File Transfer Protocol) and to do this, you require a special piece of software known rather unsurprisingly as an FTP client.Such programs are very easy to come by on the Web and indeed one is included as part of Microsoft FrontPage however a program that I have come to rely upon is one called CuteFTP which has never given me any problems.

To acquire this program go to the address www.cuteftp.com and download the free trail version online which will function correctly for 30 days without requiring you to purchase it.The file itself should only take quarter of an hour or so to download at which point you should install the program as you would any other piece of software.

Providing you have already registered your site on the Internet or have received information regarding any free webspace provided by your ISP (Internet Service Provider) then you should now be in a position to start transferring some files to your file space.The information they have provided should include a host address, user name and password.If any of these are missing then your first port of call should be to phone or e-mail the technical support department of the people who are going to be hosting your site.

If you now start CuteFTP and click on ‘New’ in the site manager box that will open up then the program will give you the opportunity to enter in all of the settings that have been provided to you in order to access and upload files to your Internet site.For example, the Red Station Domains site that I recommended for hosing last month will require you to enter ftp.uploadserver.co.uk as your host server, you should then enter your user name and password into the boxes supplied and, as with all providers you will have to select ‘Normal’ login for the login type.

If you then click on ‘connect’ the server should log you in displaying all information about the status of your connection in the upper box on your screen.On the right hand side of the screen you will find a listing of all the files currently residing in your webspace and on the left hand side you’ll see the files and folders stored on your computer.

Your hosting company should have informed you of the correct folder on the server you should store your files in.Simply enter this folder and then just drag and drop your website files you wish to upload from your computer (left hand side of the screen) on to the server (right hand side) then your website should be ready for its first visitors.

To finish with, I’ll leave you will a couple of helpful hints –

Don’t be afraid of phoning the support line of the company who has agreed to provide your hosting.Many of them are just a local or national call rate and they should be able to resolve any problems you are experiencing.

Always check your page thoroughly in a web browser such as Internet Explorer after upload to ensure that all links you have provided to other pages on your site work correctly.

Try your page out on a number of different computers to see how it looks on various machines and alter accordingly to ensure as many people as possible are able to view it.

Save the first page you want your visitors to see when they load up your website as index.html as their computers will always load this page by default.

About the Author – Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.

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