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Plusnet Usergroup » All Users - The Open Forum » The Chit-Chat Channel » How to get started using web space
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Author Topic: How to get started using web space  (Read 17777 times)
inkslingers

Posts: 4

« on: June 06, 2011, 04:31:51 pm »

Hi.  Just joined the usergroup as I was baffled as to how I use the 100mb of free webspace that plusnet have allocated to me. 

Basically what happens next?  I have searched around the help section of plusnet's site and have ended up in an eternal loop of non-information. 

Figured out that I would need to use something called cuteftp and even downloaded it only to discover that it was only a trial version and I had 30 days to get on with it so that's what I'm trying to do.

I created a header, saved it in a folder, dragged it across the panes into the htdoc folder and then comes the mystery - WHAT DO I DO NEXT?

There seems to be a vital and very important step missing i.e. building a website or web page, but how that part is done I have not a clue.  Is there a great tutorial on the plusnet site that I have missed or do I have to go to college for a couple of years before I can get started.  All yours my friends.  Please help a user who was defeated before he even began.
dhookham
Administrator

Posts: 3268


« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2011, 07:01:04 pm »

Hi there,
There is an introductory tutorial here, though it probably needs a bit of updating in the specifics.

Essentially you need two main tools to create a webpage - something to do the editing of the file and something to copy that file up to your space on Plusnet's servers.

To copy the file you will need an FTP application. Whilst some versions of Windows come with a command line utility, and Internet Explorer can handle FTP, you probably don't want to use those. CuteFTP is fine, but there are some free alternatives, for example:
http://www.coreftp.com/
http://winscp.net/
http://filezilla-project.org/

To edit the file, there are a lot of options, ranging from Notepad to a full-blown web design tool, though I'd caution against using any non-specialised application - whilst many word processors and other office applications can output HTML pages, the output is heavily influenced by a need to maintain specific functionality, and tends to be filled with proprietory mark-up code. Unfortunately, the better known editors such as Dreamweaver are far from cheap; however if you have an Enterprise version of Office, I think Expression Web is included. Microsoft used to offer a free download of Sharepoint Designer, but I'm not sure if it's still available.

Although I haven't used this one, I've heard some good things about it, so might be worth taking a look - it has the editor and ftp functionality incorporated into one application:
http://www.kompozer.net/

It's the PlusNet Way
spraxyt
Usergroup Member

Posts: 3003

« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2011, 07:52:40 pm »

It's also traditional to start with the ubiquitous Hello Word page.

Code: (helloworld.htm)
<html>
  <head>
    <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html;charset=ISO-8859-1" />
    <title>Simple Hello World Page</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <h1>Hello World!</h1>
  </body>
</html>

If you save that in a file called helloworld.htm, upload using FTP in ASCII format to htdocs you should find it displays at
www.username.plus.com/helloworld.htm

I use FileZilla (http://filezilla-project.org) for FTP.

Edit.

There is a guide to using FileZilla in the Community Support Library (Upload to your Webspace with FileZilla).
« Last Edit: June 06, 2011, 08:01:00 pm by spraxyt »
Penny

Posts: 1781


WWW
« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2011, 09:31:11 pm »

I created a header, saved it in a folder, dragged it across the panes into the htdoc folder and then comes the mystery - WHAT DO I DO NEXT?

There seems to be a vital and very important step missing i.e. building a website or web page, but how that part is done I have not a clue.  Is there a great tutorial on the plusnet site that I have missed or do I have to go to college for a couple of years before I can get started.  All yours my friends.  Please help a user who was defeated before he even began.

I remember (well) being where you are right now Smiley

It gets easier, a bit at a time.  Seems like you've had a lot of good advice already.  The only thing that might (also) be relevant is that if you want your page to display at http://www.username.plus.com , you'll need to create an "index" page (maybe named index.htm), upload that and remove the default index.html page that PlusNet will have put as a holding page in your htdocs folder).

Pagebuilding-wise, I've found Arachnophilia (free) is best - http://www.arachnoid.com/arachnophilia/index_old.html - "legacy" version but have been using it for years and has never (ever) gone wrong.  There's also a tutorial at http://www.arachnoid.com/lutusp/html_tutor.html .

I used Cute FTP to learn with and it's fine, but, later, found Flash FXP was more useful - http://www.flashfxp.com .  It costs ($25 for a lifetime) but probably more than worth it.  They do a 30 day free trial so maybe you could try that (if wished) when your Cute FTP trial runs out.

Good luck with your pagebuilding Smiley

Penny Rollo       Force 9 from 17/02/98       PlusNet from 2000 onwards     
Project HappyChild - free maths worksheets, free French-English
worksheets and 12 other languages http://www.happychild.org.uk
personal site www.pennymidasrollo.plus.com
inkslingers

Posts: 4

« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2011, 11:57:12 am »

Holy sherbert,what a great start.  Thanks all for your helpful pointers.

Now I have a case of information constipation.  This will take a little working through so may be a while before I let you know the outcome.

I wasn't even sure if I was using the right user group!  I clearly was.

Now for a bit of head scratching.  OOh just thought; can anyone give me some indication of what 100MB of webspace actually means.  Would it hold an elephant or just a bag of Jelly Tots?

Thankful regards

Me
spraxyt
Usergroup Member

Posts: 3003

« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2011, 04:28:15 pm »

That question falls into the "how long is a piece of string?" category. grin

However I think "adequate" is a fair description to start with. Pages containing text are generally not that large, it's when you get into embedding images and photographs that space is rapidly consumed.

In round numbers a moderate size HTML text page might be 25k bytes, double that if you add complex shading and lots of links.

Image files in JPEG format are typically 100k bytes, but can be (much) larger if more detailed. The first time you make the mistake of storing a bit-map image you might get a bit of a shock when it takes up several megabytes. rolleyes

So maybe an elephant might be a tight squeeze, but a crate of jelly babies should be possible. graduate

Always bear in mind that site visitors have to download what you store and you don't want to make page loading take too long. Also user displays are quite small so too much detail in images is simply a waste of bandwidth. Also bear in mind you will have a daily traffic limit as well as the space limit.
inkslingers

Posts: 4

« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2011, 04:54:09 pm »

That question falls into the "how long is a piece of string?" category. grin

However I think "adequate" is a fair description to start with. Pages containing text are generally not that large, it's when you get into embedding images and photographs that space is rapidly consumed.

In round numbers a moderate size HTML text page might be 25k bytes, double that if you add complex shading and lots of links.

Image files in JPEG format are typically 100k bytes, but can be (much) larger if more detailed. The first time you make the mistake of storing a bit-map image you might get a bit of a shock when it takes up several megabytes. rolleyes

So maybe an elephant might be a tight squeeze, but a crate of jelly babies should be possible. graduate

Always bear in mind that site visitors have to download what you store and you don't want to make page loading take too long. Also user displays are quite small so too much detail in images is simply a waste of bandwidth. Also bear in mind you will have a daily traffic limit as well as the space limit.


Thanks for the new info and the previous 'Hello World' advice.  Will try it soon.

Now have Filezilla up and running and have (probably) uploaded WordPress to the host. Now (according to George Plumley of WordPress ) I need to do something about a MySQL database.  Guess that will all become clear too - eventually.

Thanks for the tip on daily traffic limit.  Hadn't thought about that one.  Will I find that limit on my account details at Plusnet?  Would hate to be more popular than my allowance.

Meanwhile I'll get tucked into that crateload of Jelly Tots - oooh a purple one (gurgle).

Regular regards

Neill

spraxyt
Usergroup Member

Posts: 3003

« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2011, 11:09:34 pm »

Please use the Reply button below posts rather than Quote when responding to the immediately preceding post, unless you intend to quote only part of it. Also be selective wherever possible even if you aren't responding to the immediately preceding post. It makes it easier for everyone to follow the thread and perhaps contribute.

I don't think daily traffic limits are defined on individual accounts. They are defined by account type in the Webspace FAQ.

If you've uploaded WordPress to the homepages server (htdocs) you have more problems than sorting out a MySQL database. huh WordPress needs PHP and that isn't available on homepages. You would need access to the CGI server for that and not all account types have access to CGI. The last column in the Webspace FAQ will tell you whether yours has.

David
NB
Usergroup Member

Posts: 2070

« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2011, 01:58:48 am »

Would using the free hosting available at wordpress.com not be a better option rather than building your own on Plusnet servers?
inkslingers

Posts: 4

« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2011, 02:42:43 pm »

Hmm.  It seems that so far I have done everything wrong.  The first thing being buying a book called 'How to Build a Site Using Wordpress'.

Since Plusnet have allocated me with 100MB of webspace I am peplexed (though not a little surprised) to find that using it is harder than I first thought.

I am currently swimming in an ocean of SQLs, PHPs and CGIs. Anyone got a RAFT.

Let's go back to basics.  Anyone know how I am really supposed to use the free webspace or would people recommend that it's not worth trying?  Or, more likely, it's not worth someone like me trying and, let's be clear about this, I am someone who has tried three times to insert a smiley into this message and can't do it (don't even feel like inserting a smiley now. Need a frowney).

Perhaps the suggestion that I use Wordpresses free hosting makes more sense but followed by the usual caveat - how would you do that then?  Perhaps the book I bought will be comeing in useful again although it didn't mention the free hosting thing and told me to get a host first - which is why I thought Plusnet was the right route.

Yours very lostly

Me
MauriceB
Administrator

Posts: 4356

« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2011, 05:22:45 pm »

Putting a 'smiley' in is easy.  Just above the box you enter your text into is a row of smilies.  Put our cursor where you want to put the smiley; 'click' on the smiley you want and hey presto  blush

NOTE: it will appear as text surrounded by colons,  this will magically translate into the Icon when you either Post or Preview

 wall
NB
Usergroup Member

Posts: 2070

« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2011, 08:48:04 pm »

I think the first thing you have to think about is exactly what you want.  Are you mainly interested in learning how to build a website, or mainly interested in putting your prose/photos/wisdom/jokes etc out there for the world to enjoy.  Whether you are more interested in the process of creating a website or in creating content will largely determine the best route to go down.

There is no point in donning the hair shirt and learning how to code web pages if it doesn't really interest you and is merely a means to an end.

P.s. Maurice, adding the smilies using the icons won't work if your browser has javascript turned off.  But in that case you can always resort to the manual method of including : )   : (   or  ; ) as text without the spaces between the punctuation symbols - they transform into Smiley Sad or Wink

a frown is > : ( without the spaces Angry
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