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Use Dreamweaver templates to control pages edited with Contribute

By MaryWeilage Editor ·
This week's Design and Usability Tactics e-newsletter explained how to use Dreamweaver templates to control pages edited with Contribute.
Will you use Dreamweaver templates to control pages edited with Contribute? Do you have any Dreamweaver and/or Contribute tips to share with your peers? Offer your thoughts about Dreamweaver and Contribute.

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One issue with DWT's...

by mgcarley-tr In reply to Use Dreamweaver templates ...

The only real issue that I have with using Dreamweaver Templates (They're great for smaller sites with ~5 to ~20 pages or so) is that - when you change the template, you have to then upload everything again.

My solution to this "problem" is fairly simple. I just use <?php include ('includes/footer.php'); ?> for example. Then all I have to do is upload footer.php if that's the file I wanted to change, because it would be included every time someone accesses the site, rather than at design-time.

Of course, you can use the equivalent <cfinclude template="includes/footer.cfm"> for ColdFusion, <jsp:include page="includes/footer.jsp" flush="true" /> for JSP and so on for whichever language you happen to be coding in.

For the layout, you can use either a "layout CSS" file or a Dreamweaver template to control the layout.

Using a CSS file is more efficient in this aspect (providing you know proper CSS), because using a DWT would still require you to upload all of the pages again, whereas an external CSS file is imported on-the-fly - so changes happen immediately, once again, rather than at design-time.

The only big-issue with CSS is that it's implementation is not consistant between the different browsers. (IE 5.x, 6.x, IE for Mac, Mozilla, Safari, Opera etc).

But that's just my preference.

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Beware of the includes

by airwhale In reply to One issue with DWT's...

My experience with includes is mixed. They are a blessing when it comes to maintenance, but I've found that Contribue in particular wants the DWT file to be a full html-document. I need to include all the base <HTML>, <HEAD> and <BODY> tags, with apropriate closure at the end in the DWT itself. Of course, you can put HTML-code in an include, but I would recommend keeping the tags mentioned out of them and in the template instead to avoid rendering and editing problems in DW/Contribute.

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Site Wide Changes Using Contribute?

by BurnsMan In reply to Use Dreamweaver templates ...


What is the best way to allow a client to make side-wide changes using Contribute?

Suppose a client wants to be able to add navigation links, say to new pages created using Contribute. Suppose we want those links to show up on every page in the site. Do you allow the client to edit a template page? Or edit an SSI (though I have heard mixed-reviews of using SSI with Contribute). Don't tell me they would have add the link in the editble "navigation" region on each page individually.

Any ideas? Thanks.


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Site-wide chages are Dreamweaver territory

by Meadhra In reply to Site Wide Changes Using C ...

Dreamweaver templates are designed to make site-wide changes quickly and easily -- from within Dreamweaver. Applying tempate updates to existing pages is beyond the scope of Contribute. Macromedia's thinking is that Contribute is a tool for end users, and you wouldn't want untrained end users making sweeping changes to an entire site. Therefore, that kind of change is reserved exclusively for Dreamweaver, who would presumably have the knowledge and experience to avoid making mistakes that might wreck a site.

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Sweeping Changes?

by BurnsMan In reply to Site-wide chages are Drea ...

Really? What a drag. I am not talking about sweeping changes here. I just want to make an editable region that non-tech folks can throw some links in and have those links appear on all the pages that carry the editable box in its template. It's really not possible? Grrrr. Thanks for your input.

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Be in control

by BoyMackman In reply to Sweeping Changes?

I have to agree with Meadhra here, I use contribute to allow members of the marketing tead to create cd catalogues.

They too have asked why they cannot make site wide changes and the reasons are two fold:

1) They are only meant to provide content, data not structure

2) They would actualy have to make the changes to ALL pages that require it. Before templates you could almost guareentee that something would be missed out or formatted a slighty different way, so to avoid that is to use templates and YOU administer them.

It also keeps you in a job!

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by kharenit In reply to Site Wide Changes Using C ...

Hi Burns ,
What kind of OS and Application server r u using to run Contribute Publishing services.
I am going to Install it on Solaris + Tomcat .
Do u guys have the same architecture?

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