Web Publishing for Genealogy

Going Public

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Publishing Your Pages

Once you have finished creating your pages and you have thoroughly tested and spell-checked them, you make them public by uploading them to the Web server belonging to your Internet provider. The exact process by which you do this will depend on how your provider organizes Web space on their system. You should make sure you have two pieces of information from your provider:

  • how to access your Web space on their system to upload the pages, and
  • the URL of your home page once it is mounted on their system.

Uploading

The normal method of copying files to a server of any sort is to use a program called FTP. If you have already used this to download software from software archives, you will be familiar with the general process, and it works in the same way if you want to upload files. However, because you will be uploading to your own private area you will need to use your own login and password.

Some Web authoring tools come with built-in utilities to upload your pages. For example, Netscape Composer provides what it calls "one button publishing" to automate uploading your pages. A more general tools is Microsoft's Web Publishing Wizard Many HTML tools have similar utilities.

Your URL

The URL of your pages will depend on what sort of Internet account you've got. For many ISPs it will simply be the name of the provider's server followed by your own identifier. For my own genealogy pages it is http://homepages.gold.ac.uk/peter/ i.e. the URL of the Web server on which my pages are located, followed by my username on that system. Some ISPs, however, provide subscribers with their own domain name, so that it appears that each user has his or her own personal Web server, rather than simply having their own directory on a general server (this is called a virtual server). For example, Tripod member pages have URLs of the format user-id.tripod.com.

Your ISP should provide documentation about what you need to do (including how to use FTP to upload pages) and provide support.

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6. Going Public