Part VIII - Front Page Nuances

  1. 1) The first thing an experienced coder tries to do is insert his/her own HTML code. Typical applications would be for inserting Web Banners and counters. If you try to edit the code by viewing HTML it will overwrite it the next time it starts up. Simply select HTML Markup from the Insert menu and it will bring up a window for you to enter your code. You can easily paste code from banners, etc in to this window. After you press "OK" you will see a small <?> where the HTML code will be inserted. Keep in mind this code will not be checked in any way for accuracy or spelling, but will also not be touched by Front Page’s automatic processes. If you did a "View/HTML" on your page you would see a webbot insert of "HTML markup" in the text.
  2. 2) A common question is "How do I run a CGI program from within Front Page?" Typical uses of CGI would be for "E-mail to forms" in Front page 97, running a log analysis program, or any number of other processes. This can be accomplished using a Front Page Form, select Custom CGI Script, select settings, enter the name of the cgi program in the action line and enter POST for the method. Other criteria can be passed to the CGI program by creating hidden fields or using form fields with names that match what the CGI program expects.
  1. 3) I’ve covered the use of Meta Tags for listing your pages in the search engines. You enter Meta Tags in each page by selecting "Page Properties" from the file menu and then selecting "Custom". In the user variables you will already see some entries for Front Page. Select "Add" and in the name field type "DESCRIPTION" and in the value enter the description of your page (this is often used as the description next to the hyperlink in a search engine) then select "OK". Next add your keywords by selecting "Add" again, entering "KEYWORDS" in the name field and entering your keywords in the value field with a comma between each word.
  1. 4) Past issues covered how tables can make your pages format the way you want them. You will often need to edit the properties of the tables and cells. Simply right click anywhere in the table and select "Table Properties" in order to adjust width, layout, color, etc. To set the cell properties simply select "Cell Properties" after right clicking in the proper cell. One very peculiar nuance of Front Page and it’s table handling, is when you want to add information after a table. There is often no space or carriage return showing after the table that would allow you to type your text. If you select the entire table, cut it, hit enter, then paste your table back above the carriage return you will have the necessary line to start typing.
  1. 5) The easiest way to add files to Front Page is from Explorer. Select the directory you want to import the files to. Select "Import" from the "File" menu and you will be given a typical file selection window. Here you can select directories, files and even Web pages off the Internet.
  1. 6) If you need to move pages or graphics to a different directory, that’s no problem. You can simply drag and drop them in Explorer and it will change all the Hyperlinks for you. Be sure to close all open Editor files as this has caused problems for me in the past.
  1. 7) To be sure your pages are ready for publishing there are two particularly useful tools in Explorer. The first is Spell Checker (on the Tools menu) which will check your entire Web for spelling errors. This is also available on a page by page basis in Editor, but it’s nice to check the entire web to be sure. The second tool is the Verify Hyperlink tool. This tool will verify the validity of every hyperlink on your site and give you the chance to change it if it doesn’t check out. Don’t forget to connect to the Internet before you run the tool.