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Help Please. How do you edit an already established site? RRS feed

  • Question

  • So I just got a job, right out of college no less! But my degree is in admin not web developing. If my organization already has a website started, how do I begin to edit it? Do I import the website? When I originally tried to edit the site, I got a warning letting me know I did not have the passwords for the site. I have purchased MS Expressions Web 4 online and downloaded it. It says it comes with tutorials but I am having trouble identifying them in my tutorial file that came with the download. Anyone else have that problem? I have little knowledge of web development and purchased this in the hopes I would not hav to learn HTML code, though even that is getting easier after 3days of studying on my own. What is the first step in editing an already established site? I don't have any info on it except that a previous employee out of India created it. Where do I start? I have only worked this job for 3days and want to make a good impression. Right now I have a .dwt that looks really good! I have some hyperlinks in place as well, but need to know if I am on the right track. I need to figure out how to layer, too. So let's start with how to edit an already existing website without passwords.

    Thank you for all your help!

    Monday, January 3, 2011 4:09 PM

All replies

  • How do we know that you are not trying to hack into someone's website? No one here is going to tell you how to bypass the password prompt to edit a website.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 5:00 PM
  • Where is the site? Is it live on a web server? Is it on your computer? Is it on a network drive?

    Is the dwt from the site that exists or is it one you made as you experimented and learned?

    If the site is already on the web, publish it down to your own computer in order to work on it (yes, "publish" to your own compuetr sounds wrong, but in EW you can publish both ways). Info is in the Help file.

    One word of caution--ignore the tutorial in EW about layers, they will cause you no end of grief.

    At the top of this forum is a post labelled BEFORE POSTING. There are learning resources at teh end of it. Start with the one at by-expression.com (download the materials first, to play along), then do more detailed ones at w3schools. Also, click the Learn tab at the top for more tutorials (but ignore the one about the drop-down menu, it won't work in early browsers).


    What do you mean, " 'twas brillig"?!?
    Monday, January 3, 2011 5:02 PM
  • First of all, there is a reason why the language contains organizational constructs such as paragraphs. Next time, try to organize your query and break out the topics/questions into paragraphs, eh?

    So, let's take a shot at this...

    So I just got a job, right out of college no less! But my degree is in admin not web developing. If my organization already has a website started, how do I begin to edit it? Do I import the website? When I originally tried to edit the site, I got a warning letting me know I did not have the passwords for the site.

    Step one is to acquire the administrative credentials for the site. That is the sine qua non for beginning to administer and edit the site. You can open the site in IE and use "File|Edit with Microsoft Expression Web 4" to open the page, but without creds you can't save anything back to the server. If your predecessor left without giving anyone his credentials for the site, you're going to have to work with the provider's support people and get the credentials reset.

    I have purchased MS Expressions Web 4 online and downloaded it. It says it comes with tutorials but I am having trouble identifying them in my tutorial file that came with the download. Anyone else have that problem?

    That is immaterial. What you need to learn is the technology, HTML and CSS, not the tool. What you're saying is equivalent to buying AutoCAD, then planning to design a building without a clue about architecture. Won't work. Oh, sure, you can do it, but the building will probably fall down, if it can even be built to begin with.

    I have little knowledge of web development and purchased this in the hopes I would not hav to learn HTML code, though even that is getting easier after 3days of studying on my own.

    Not going to happen. EW is a professional design tool, on a par with Dreamweaver and other professional tools. As a consequence, you are expected to bring to the table a basic knowledge and understanding of HTML and CSS in order to use it effectively. Its excellent compatibility and syntax checking, along with Intellisense, will certainly make the learning easier, but EW will not think for you, nor be able to make up for a vacuum of knowledge. Knowledge is the part you are supposed to provide. Sorry, hate to disabuse you of your illusions, but that really is the way it is.

    What is the first step in editing an already established site? I don't have any info on it except that a previous employee out of India created it. Where do I start?

    Good question, and here's the answer... Start with the Learning Resources listed in the BEFORE POSTING thread., beginning with Cheryl's excellent beginner's video tutorial, "Build A Basic Web Site." Then move on to the free HTML and CSS courses available at w3schools. By the time you finish those you will have a pretty fair grasp both of Web technology and (from Cheryl's tut) how to use EW to apply it.

    I have only worked this job for 3days and want to make a good impression.

    You are not going to do that by pretending to knowledge that you simply don't have. They hired an admin grad, not a comp sci grad, nor a professional Web developer. Explain to your manager that Web development was not a part of your admin curriculum, and that you need a little time to come up to speed on the technology in order to produce a quality product for the company. Feel free to reference this post and the others you're likely to receive in this thread. If he's an experienced manager he will understand the situation. (Unless, of course, you did something like put Web development down as one of your qualifications in your résumé...)

    Right now I have a .dwt that looks really good! I have some hyperlinks in place as well, but need to know if I am on the right track. I need to figure out how to layer, too.

    NO, NO, NO, NO, NO! Get that bloody idea completely out of your head! Layers are almost never, ever necessary, and in the rare instance where they should be used, should only be implemented by those who have a thoroughgoing grasp of HTML and CSS. They are fragile, difficult to make cross-browser compatible, and adversely affect accessibility. They are NOT for beginners.

    So let's start with how to edit an already existing website without passwords.

    You don't. As stated, even if you download and edit the individual pages, you will not be able to publish your changes unless you have the admin credentials for the site. So, job one is to either acquire or have reset the access credentials for the site. Step two is to engage in the training described above. There are no shortcuts, and the software will not do the job for you. If you're going to be the company's Web developer, then you need to learn Web development. Explain that to your boss, explain why learning is necessary, and good luck!

    cheers,
    scott


    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.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 5:06 PM
  • If the site is already on the web, publish it down to your own computer in order to work on it (yes, "publish" to your own compuetr sounds wrong, but in EW you can publish both ways). Info is in the Help file.

    Bill, I don't think that that is possible without admin credentials. I can open a site that's not mine in EW, but none of the Publishing options under Site are available, and the Site tab does not even appear in the window (nor is Import... available under the File menu).

    True, publishing to the local drive would be a first step in circumstances such as this, but AFAIK, that would require admin creds to accomplish, and they would certainly be required to set up a Publishing Destination in order to publish any changes.

    Basically, the OP is dead in the water until he gets those admin credentials, n'est-ce pas?

    cheers,
    scott


    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.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 5:17 PM
  • As to your hopes that you would be able to be a paid web developer without having to learn HTML, CSS, etc.:  No.  Use EW, Dreamweaver, or any other professional web development tool and the answer will be the same.  They aid you, write some for you, but don't absolve you of understanding what you are asking them to write, or being able to look at the HTML and CSS to debug problems you've introduced.

    But, regardless, you can edit a copy of a site on your PC to your hearts content - but without the publishing credentials you will *not* be able to publish that site to the web.  [Imagine if you could!  Anyone could hack your site, or any other site, with no effort at all.]

    Once you have publishing credentials, you publish a copy of your site down to your PC, and edit it, then publish it back up.  (However, without a link to the site, we don't know if there are any bumps in the road with this method - for example, if the site were created with a CMS or other online creation/database back ended tools.)

    Monday, January 3, 2011 5:30 PM
  • Scott:

    Of course, that's true. I assumed that the password problem would be taken care of first. Obviously, it would do little good to work on a site if you also couldn't publish it when you're done, so the issue has to be resolved, which I assumed it would.


    What do you mean, " 'twas brillig"?!?
    Monday, January 3, 2011 5:51 PM
  • As to your hopes that you would be able to be a paid web developer without having to learn HTML, CSS, etc.:  No.

    Hmm, you know, Kathy, it never occurred to me that he might have hired on as a Web developer . I kinda had the impression that he had been engaged based on his admin degree, and as is unfortunately the case in too many organizations, handed Web site development as a collateral duty.

    If he really did hire on as the company's new Web developer, then he is well and truly in deep sh... er, do-do.

    cheers,
    scott


    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.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 6:11 PM
  • I didn't assume the OP was hired as a web developer.  I assume they've been given an assignment as if they were one, and thus are being paid to do that (at least part of the time). That the boss may have assumed that updating the website is something anyone walking through the door can do without specific knowledge is a failing of the boss - but one the OP needs to recitfy.  Depending on what the website is (we don't know), this might be basic HTML/CSS web design, or it may even be something more complex (database, coding, etc.).  But it's not something to be done with no knowledge.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 7:23 PM
  • "So let's start with how to edit an already existing website without passwords." That part worries me. That is why I made my earlier comment.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 10:01 PM
  • Yeah, I thought about that, for a few milliseconds, until I considered that no one with the capacity, the knowledge and experience, to hack a Web site would be so bloody stupid as to come to a public forum to ask how to get in.

     


    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.
    Monday, January 3, 2011 11:18 PM