BUG: Root-relative style sheet links not processed correctly by EW4 RRS feed

  • Question

  • Our web sites sit within a typical IIS server and all pages have root-relative links to our global style-sheet, which is located under another virtual on our web server and although EW4 loads the style sheet correctly in the design view, EW4 does not list the individual classes so they can be applied manually from the Styles dropdown menu on the toolbar. Our root-relative links are coded as follows:


    Now if we change the /'s to \'s then everything works fine, but we're not about to do that because it impacts other tools that edit these same pages. Plus, it goes against the norm of how root-relative links should be coded (with /'s not \'s). What could explain this behavior other than a bug in the software??

    It's little things like this that really frustrate me about Expression Web (very simple, basic things!). Thankfully SharePoint designer is still around which I experience far fewer issues with than EW4. EW5 is hopefully just around the corner because this is starting to get really old. 

    Friday, May 25, 2012 6:09 PM

All replies

  • You do realize that we are just users here in this forum, right? We can sympathize with your plight, but can otherwise do nothing. Please see the Forum FAQs and Guidelines - Start Here, which provides links to Microsoft Connect for reporting bugs.


    Please remember to "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue. It is common courtesy to recognize those who have helped you, and it also makes it easier for visitors to find the resolution later.

    Friday, May 25, 2012 8:57 PM
  • If I read this correctly you have:

    virutalName1    virtualname2
    root                   root
    page.html          page.html
    /other folders

    You are woring in Expression Web for in virtualName1 not in Server, correct? Then in the vitualname2 site your page.html file uses  "/virtualname1/css/stylesheet.css" to access the styleshet in virtualname1.

    If that's the case I can see why you have problems because that is not normal workflow. I have never once since I started creating websites in 1993 used the workflow described whether I was using Dreamweaver, Expression Web, FrontPage, TopStyle or any of the other dozen editors I've used on both Mac and Windows computers in the last 19 years. Going above the locally defined site and virtual site as configured on the server is not a "very simple, basic thing".

    However, if Expression Web doesn't fit your workflow perhaps it is time to move to a different editor. Your reference to Sharepoint makes me wonder why you are even using Expression Web.

    Free Expression Web Tutorials
    For an Expression Web forum with without the posting issues try

    Saturday, May 26, 2012 1:20 AM
  • 1. How can a link to a file outside of the web root, be considered "root relative"?

    2. Why not just simply place a copy of the CSS file into the site?

    Expression Web MVP

    Saturday, May 26, 2012 4:15 PM
  • The reason we reference VirtualName1 from Virtualname2 is because we have some 50-60 internal web sites that all reference shared elements (i.e.  css, footers, js files, etc).  @Steven, this is why positioning our css files locally within our webs is not an option. Using root-relative links (although linking to another virtual) has worked quite well for this purpose, at least until we considered migrating from SharePoint Designer to Expression Web. One advantage to us migrating to EW4 from SharePoint Designer was because of it's support of SFTP and plus it's a more modern editor which MS still supports. Granted, SharePoint Designer is still supported... but not for IIS based websites, only for SharePoint sites. So.....EW4 was the next logical option.
    Monday, May 28, 2012 3:24 AM
  • 1. Even though the virtual is located outside the referring web, since it's still being referenced from the same server, it works.

    2. See my response to Cheryl.

    Monday, May 28, 2012 3:27 AM
  • Your issue, as stated previously, was that you claimed EW had a bug. The real problem is that you are calling something root-relative that is not root-relative, yet you are expecting EW to behave as though it were. That's not a bug. And that's not an EW problem; if you want root-relative, they have to actually be root-relative. 

    Have you tried setting up virtual directories using the IIS server admin tool? You could do it that way, but since you mention "other tools" I don't know if that will affect them. You could also use @import url to link to them.

    Alec Guiness walks into a cell phone store and picks up a smartphone. The salesman tells him, "This is not the Droid you are looking for."

    Monday, May 28, 2012 2:40 PM