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Happyhelen
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Hi guys:

As you probably already know, I'm new to this whole dreamweaver/web page creation thing. However, I've been hosting my website on geocities.com to start with because I wanted to see what my site would look like when published. However, I've been told geocities.com sucks and has bad codes and the ads drive me nuts. So do any of you have suggestions of an either free or really really really minimal charge for web hosting that you'd recommend to a beginner? Because all I'm doing right now is CREATING a site, and it might take, even a year, and I guess I didn't want to pay all that money each month just so I can see what my site looks like published (since often the preview in browser button in DW is not a good judge of what it'll look like)...

So any advice?

Thanks,
-Helen

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gleddy
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Web hosting for beginners?

heya,

sounds to me like you are just looking for a way to preview your website outside of the WYSIWYG Dreamweaver environment and on a 'real' site.

If that is all you want you can just open you website from any browser by going to "File" -> "Open File" within the browser and you can see how it all looks in each browser. Just open your index page and the site will work normally...

This is extremely easy with straight html, but can still be done with server-side languages as well (PHP, ASP) with minimal work. Then you can just bookmark the locations (say the index page) for easy access later...

if you are indeed looking for a place to host your site, I am currently using www.godaddy.com which is really basic and cheap (about $3 U.S. per month) and have had no problems so far.

Chris..S
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Web hosting for beginners?

To preview your own websites as you build them, consider installing a copy of apache on your own PC. Apache is the premier web server on the web, its free and its pretty easy to set up and the on-line documentation is very comprehensive (if not always easy to understand).

Main site: http://httpd.apache.org/

If you work on a windows PC, get the latest version 2 download, currently 2.0.53 [edit, see Hugo's note below about all in one packages, a much easier way to go]

If you do install apache and develop your website locally you can even fake the final domain on your own computer. Edit the hosts file (on win xp, \windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts) to include a line (don't change any of the existing lines)

127.0.0.1   www.mydomain.com

As far as online webspace goes. Are you in the UK (I know hatfield house is)? If so, how do you connect to the internet?

Many Pay-As-You-Go ISPs provide some free webspace.

For example, plus.net If you connect at least once every 90 days by phone, they will keep your account active. That gives you 25Mb of clean webspace and 100Mb/month of usage. There are plenty of others - checkout the yahoo list.

Broadband and other pay monthly ISP connections generally provide more features - up to PHP/MySQL/Domain hosting as well. Though as a general rule, the more well known companies AOL, BT, NTL, Wanadoo, etc provide less than the less well known ones.

[edited - to point to Hugo's post on all-in-one AMP packages for windows]

Anonymous
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Web hosting for beginners?

I don't know what the policy of advertising for a business is here so I won't mention the name I used but I paid $2.95/month (with a month free if you pay for the whole year). You get 200MB of Space and 4GB of Bandwidth. If that is enough space and bandwidth then pm me and I will give you their name.

I never, ever had trouble with their servers but I had to switch because they wouldn't install gd lib, which I wanted, so I moved to a server that charges $6.95/month. I also get much more space and bandwidth (3000MB and 50GB).

Hugo
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Web hosting for beginners?

If were talking about web hosts it's probably polite to mention the fact that Tony (forum leader) runs his own web hosting service Wink

Chris makes a valid point that ISPs will generally provide some free space, usually fine for testing purposes, albeit lacking such things as php and quite rightly says that the larger companies are the worst by a long shot if your with one of the better small but technically competent broadband providers such as Clara net, Zen, prodigy, nildram etc they all provide decent free web space.

If you wish to have a localhost test server, and who wouldn't ? you can install Apache and attempt the configuration, which shouldn't be too hard, but an easier option may be to go for an 'A.M.P' install package (Apache, MySql, php) this way you get an Apache server pre-configured with Mysql and php for WinXP all ready to go out of the box. One such package can be found here: firepages phpdev5

Hugo.

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Happyhelen
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thank you

Wow, you guys are sooo nice and provide such fast responses!

So yeah, I'm the UK right now and I'm connected through the internet by ethernet. But I'm going back to the states in like a week...and probably using cable modem or something of that sort. Does that affect anything?

Thanks,
-Helen

Tony
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Web hosting for beginners?

Hi HappyHelen,
Thanks for looking out for me again Hugo Smile

Once you have your site hosted on the web it wont matter where you access it from.
So what the guy's were getting at is the ISP or company you use to connect to the internet, may have free hosting for it's members without the adds that other free hosting services apply.

If you want to install a web server locally for testing have a look at the downloads of firepages, they bundle up Apache, PHP and MySQL as a simple installer.

If your ISP doesn't provide free hosting and you don't want to install the servers please consider MultiWebSpace as a reliable affordable hosting provider.

wolfcry911
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Web hosting for beginners?

And if you have a Mac, Apache web server and php are built into OS X (for local host testing). MySQL can be added as well.