How to Create Your First Web Site

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These simple guidelines are for entry-level Web programmers. Better options are available for more sophisticated users.

Things You'll Need

  • Modems
  • Scanners
  • Internet Service Providers
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • FTP Programs
  • Macromedia Dreamweaver
  • Microsoft FrontPage
  • Microsoft Word
  • Netscape Composer
  • Paint Shop Pro
  • Clip Art CD-ROMs
  • Scanning Software

Getting Started

  • Choose an ISP to host your Web site.

  • Investigate several hosting services, considering factors such as maximum space, accessibility, reputation and terms of service.

  • Select and download a Web-page editor. Several simple editors are available for free; Netscape Composer is one. These editors let you see what your site will look like as you build it, so you won't have to learn HTML or other programming languages.

  • Your Web-page editor will give you specific instructions about options such as naming your site, creating different sections, creating backgrounds, adding links and inserting images.

Using Images

  • Create images for your site by drawing them with your computer's paint program or by using a scanner for photographs and other hard-copy images.

  • If you find an image on another Web page that you'd like to use, e-mail the page's owner or administrator and request permission to download and post it. Download an image from a Web site by right-clicking on it (or clicking and holding on a Mac) and selecting Save Picture.

Publishing Your Site

  • Your Web host ISP may have its own system for uploading pages. Otherwise, obtain a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) program. Any will do.

  • Open your FTP program and log in to your host server by entering your login name and password.

  • Access the directory where your home page belongs. (Your Web ISP will give you this information.) The directory address is usually in the form of /pub/username, /pub/www/username or /pub/username/www. Your FTP program and host server will have specific instructions on how to access your directory.

  • Upload each page and graphic of your site according to the specific instructions of the FTP program and your host server.

Tips & Warnings

  • Many Web hosts will let you use your own "domain name" (such as www.me.com), if you have one, or they will assign you a name. (See the Related eHow "How to Register a Domain Name".)
  • See the Related eHow "How to Find Free Web Space" for info on finding free providers.
  • There are also Web sites that provide both hosting and site-building services; Homestead is a popular one.
  • Check eHow for instructions on using several Web-editing programs, including Netscape Composer, Microsoft FrontPage, and Macromedia Dreamweaver, as well as information on basic HTML. Some word-processing programs and Web browsers also have built-in editors.
  • Many graphics software programs come with "clip art" that you can use on your Web site. Clip-art CD-ROMs provide individual, simple images in various categories.
  • You may want to limit the size of the images you include, since larger images can make your page take a long time to view.
  • Check eHow for instructions on using Paint Shop Pro and Adobe Photoshop, two popular Web graphics programs.
  • Your FTP program may give you the option between ASCII and binary mode when uploading. Use ASCII mode when uploading pages, because pages are text files. Use binary mode for image files.
  • The above steps are a general strategy for uploading your site. Your FTP program and Web page ISP will have more specific instructions.
  • Remember that anyone with Internet access can view your Web site; be careful about how much personal information you provide.
  • To use clip art or images from someone else's site, you need permission from the creator, unless the site or clip-art collection specifically states that the art can be reused.
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