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1. I am trying to setup a footer that will be identical on all pages of a 50+ page site. The footer will occasionally change. When I change something, I want to be able to do it once and have it affect all the pages identically. Does anyone know of a good tutorial which would show how to do this? If not, what term(s) would I use to google for information?
2. I am using FrontPage 2002 SP3. Are there noticeable differences in upgrading to FrontPage 2003 that make 2003 worth it?
(1) For anticipated global changes, FP2003 uses the model of "including one page in another", which actually includes parts of pages from independent files.
So, for example, you can make a footer file which is maintained in one place and inserted in all the pages of a site, with relative references automatically fixed up at insertion. You write it as a webpage in html and give the page fragment a filename (such as "footer.htm"), even if you never use the page independently and only use it as a fragment to be included.
Then in each page where you want that code included you just write its name in a special comment, like
<!--webbot bot="Include" U-Include="includes/footer.htm"
which means to copy and "relocate" all the code within the <BODY> tag of the page "footer.htm" in directory "includes".
A single page can be assembled from over a hundred fragments in separate files, and a fragment can be used in hundreds of pages (in my personal experience) with very good performance. All of the includes are checked after insertion, so errors such as broken links are detected and reported (in the FP2003 site reports) before the site is uploaded to the server.
Unlike "server-side includes" which are done when a page is requested, "FrontPage2003 includes" assemble the parts of pages into the files once, before FTP'ing to the server. The server can be a Unix/Linux server or a Windows server, and does NOT need to have any FrontPage Extensions installed; the server doesn't even know that its static pages were assembled by FrontPage2003.
Microsoft has free online training which includes both of the above techniques:
How do search engine spiders handle the information in the include?
Do they read the included text as if it is part of each page or can they not 'see' it?
To a search engine or a user, the page is like any other page. The SE or user has no way of knowing how the page was put together behind the scenes.
I asked rfrontaine (both at the board and in a PM): kindly explain the rationale behind making such a bold statement about FrontPage.
Why in the world would someone write a statement like that without an explanation or response when asked? My question is a natural one since I use FrontPage. Is there something wrong with the program or is it just a matter that some consider it too lowly?