Dreamweaver MX - The Application Panel

This article explains the Application Panel in Dreamweaver MX.

It is part from the book Dynamic Dreamweaver MX written by many famous people including our own Omar Elbaga from the UDzone team!

The Application Panel

Now that you are familiar with ASP / VBScript coding and database structures, you can delve into the fabulous server behavior features Dreamweaver MX has to offer. We will be taking a stroll through the Application panel, whilst giving you a good understanding as to what each behavior has the capability of doing.

It is wrong to think that each server behavior does only one single thing. On the contrary, other than a few specific server behaviors (such as Log In User), each server behavior can have multiple uses for many different kinds of web applications. The behaviors are generic blocks of code that can be called upon for use in various aspects of your web applications.

It is important to know when and how to use the Application panel. We will look at full-blown applications in later chapters, but here we will concentrate on these areas:

·       Databases / Connections - how Dreamweaver deals with connecting to databases, via Data Source Names or Custom Connection Strings

·       Bindings - Dreamweaver makes binding data to pages via recordsets, and Application, Request, and Session variables very easy - learn how in this section

·       Server Behaviors - these are pre-written pieces of server-side code that you can add straight to your applications, speeding up web site development no end

Before Moving On - Creating a Virtual Directory

Please create a physical directory named webprodmx_files on your PC where you will save all the file examples for this chapter. To test examples locally we should create a virtual directory called webprodmx pointing to the physical directory you just created. For example, in PWS:

·       Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Personal Web Manager

·       Go to Advanced > Add, and you should see the following dialog box:

·       Click Browse... and select the physical directory named webprodmx_files that you created above

·       Type webprodmx for the Alias

·       Check Read under Access Permissions and Scripts under Application Permissions, and click OK

·       Close the Personal Web Manager

You should now be able to access the physical directory by pointing your web browser to http://localhost/webprodmx. Make sure your server is running. When this virtual directory is accessed through the browser it will point to the root physical folder webprodmx_files that you created on your PC (for more on setting up web servers, see Chapter 5).

Defining Your Site

While your server is running, open Dreamweaver MX. If you have not created a site, your Application Panel should display numbered bullets listing the process to set up a site. The first one says, "Create a site for this file." Click the hyperlink named site. If Dreamweaver MX loads a different site that you have already created, go to Site > New Site. You should be presented with a Site Definition dialog box. This dialog box has seven screens, but we will only be covering the first three here - this will be sufficient for setting up a basic site - we will now go through each of these in turn:

Local Info

The Local info screen looks like this:

Fill it in as follows:

·       Site Name: Name your site webprodmx.

·       Local Root Folder: Browse for the local root folder named webprodmx_files, which you created above.

·       Default Images Folder: Browse for the folder that will hold your images - it is best to call it images, and put it inside the root of your web site, webprodmx_files - this is good practice for effective site layout - we will know where all our images are.

·       HTTP Address: Type http://localhost/webprodmx.

Also, make sure the site cache is enabled (that is, the checkbox is checked)

Remote Info

·       Switch to the Remote Info screen:

·       Select the following options:

·       Access: Select Local/Network.

·       Remote Folder: Browse for the local root folder named webprodmx_files, which you created above.

We can leave the other settings at their defaults - Refresh Remote File List Automatically is selected, which means that when you view the remote file list in the site window, it will make sure you are seeing the latest version of the remote files. Also, as we are not working in a collaborative environment, we don't need to Enable File Check In And Check Out - which is useful for just such environments as it allows you to quickly see who is working on what file.

Testing Server

Switch to Testing Server:

Select the following options:

·       Server Model: Select ASP VBScript

·       Access: Select Local/Network

·       Testing Server Folder: Browse for the local root folder named webprodmx_files that you created

·       URL Prefix: Type http://localhost/webprodmx, and click OK

Let's recap briefly what you should have done so far. You should have created a physical directory on your PC where you will save all the file examples named webprodmx_files. You should also have created a virtual directory named webprodmx that will be accessed from the browser from http://localhost/webprodmx. This will lead to the root of your site. Finally you should have defined a site in Dreamweaver MX named webprodmx that will be tested on your local server. Chapter 8 has more about setting up a site, including a discussion of what the other four panels do.

Now let's move on to look at how we connect our site to, and use it with, a database.

George Petrov

George PetrovGeorge Petrov is a renowned software writer and developer whose extensive skills brought numerous extensions, articles and knowledge to the DMXzone- the online community for professional Adobe Dreamweaver users. The most popular for its over high-quality Dreamweaver extensions and templates.

George is also the founder of Wappler.io - the most Advanced Web & App Builder

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Hello to everybody

April 28, 2004 by privat privat
Hi to all and thank you for creating such a usfule website about Dreamweaver Mx , i am a new user and i am trying to start to learn how to be aible to creat my own website and also to use a Dreamweaver so i would like one of your people from the fabules site to help me and to get me starting but in a very easy step because i never ever use those tools , so what u saying about it from a scrach i want to start to learn Dreamweaver , but i don't have a ide how to start and wich is the best first program to start and to learn to designe if you can show me the way i will be very happy , because so many time i try to find a site like this who can help you with the steps and follow the dream i was thinking of my e-mail is xhatiik@hotmail.com and also i have registert my other e-mail in this site DJFones@hotmail.com so please help me i will be very happy to start with Dreamweaver MX Thank You agine.


October 17, 2006 by Umesh Gamit

RE: Hello to everybody

December 19, 2006 by jerome esperanza
sure no problem... email me: jerome_107@yahoo.com

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