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Archived Message:

Diane's frontpage tip

EBookCompiler Diane sent me this instructions on how she does Frontpage with Activ E-Book Compiler.  Hopefully this helps someone

About Front Page.  I open a new web site.  I import the image files just into the web file not putting them into the image file.  What I have when I am finished is all of the files, pages and images outside of the front page folders.  When I go to make my ebook. I simply copy them all and place them into the source folder of your program.  I use the active e quick project to set up the ebook file . It is simple and takes no time at all as you can copy all the files with a click of the mouse.    I hope this is self explanatory. If not send me a note and I will try to explain it better.

Posted on: 3:59 am on October 19, 2001
EBookCompiler push

Posted on: 3:12 pm on March 19, 2002
Peter Aleff Diane's tip works, but if she had no problems she must be one of those people who routinely win the lottery twice a week.  FrontPage 2000 caused me several major problems, and here is how I worked around them.  Maybe this can save someone else the frustrations I had to go through.

1.) As Sunil discovered for me, this program from the lowest circles of hell has a nasty habit of overwriting the relative links to other pages in the same site with absolute links that list the whole path to a file on my computer.  Such links are useless when that web is either published or used to make an e-book, and they bypass the password protection when you try the e-book on your computer.

The workaround is that before each uploading you use the "Replace" function in the "Edit" menu, paste the unwanted long file path up to the name into the top line of text to be replaced, including the quote mark just before it, and type into the bottom line only that quote mark.  Run the "Replace" command to get the list of pages where the bad line occurs, then double-click the red dot in front of the first listing to replace the entries there, then on "Next document" for the same until you have exhausted the list.  Tedious if your site has lots of pages, but necessary if you want it to work.

2.) I initially used on all pages a shared bottom border for the repetitive contact and copyright information.  However, this feature of FrontPage is temperamental, and that border may or may not appear on your site or in your book.  It worked in two of the four e-books I compiled so far, but not in the other two.  Also, it disappeared on and off from the Unix server where I first had my site, and I had to switch to a host with Windows servers for that border to appear consistently.  

To work around this problem, I pasted the info from that shared border into the bottom of each page body itself and then disabled the shared border.

3.) I had used little pictures on the top of my pages as links to the different sections in my site, and I wrote the section titles on those pictures with FrontPage.  These so linked text additions were also too much for the Unix server and worked only on Windows, and the pictures with those links did not appear at all in the compiled e-books, except as the little red crosses that indicate there should be a picture.

Workaround:  I added the text to each picture in PaintShop Pro so that I did not have to write on them with FrontPage.  Eliminating the FrontPage text this way solved the disappearing problem and also shortened the code for those picture links significantly.

There were a few additional annoyances, too, but mostly minor ones, and ultimately my site and books wound up working OK, just as for Diane.  

However, I would like to find out where Diane got her four-leaved clover and rabbit feet or other good-luck charms, and how she cajoled her computer to make it do what she wants despite this effort-sabotaging caricature of a program.

And if you insist on working with FrontPage, arm yourself with much patience and stoicism and avoid tossing your computer out the window even if it deserves that punishment a thousandfold.  Also, use it only when your horoscope is auspicious.  Good luck!

Peter Aleff at recoveredscience.com
-- e-books on riddles in science,
easy to read and hard to forget

Posted on: 1:33 pm on June 20, 2002

(Edited by JohnDodson at 2:17 pm on June 27, 2002)

Posted on: 7:07 pm on June 20, 2002
EBookCompiler Okay guys lets cool it.

Diane's tip (apparently) worked for her.  For whatever reason didn't work for Peter, and John found a way worked for him.

Everybodys experience and insight is different but nonetheless valuable.  I know HTML, but don't know frontpage, so I can't judge who is right.  It is quite possible that what works for one person doesn't work for another because they use the program differently, their computer is setup differently, or their web site is setup differently - in other words more than one person can be right.

Whoever posts next, please remember this forum has friends in the domain name, and it's there for a reason   And by the way I'm serious, no flame wars if you want to keep posting here.

Let's concentrate on how to achieve our authoring goals,  and helping each other, rather than the other stuff.

Posted on: 2:09 am on June 21, 2002

(Edited by JohnDodson at 2:16 pm on June 27, 2002)

Posted on: 2:34 pm on June 21, 2002
EBookCompiler Thanks John for taking the first step.

Both you and Peter are valuable contributors to this forum.  I do appreciate it when we all try to show our best sides.

Posted on: 3:43 am on June 22, 2002
Peter Aleff Thank you for your defense, Sunil, and for your comments as well as apology, John.

I swear I did not mean to bash Diane.  To the contrary, I am grateful to her that she posted that tip, and admiring because it worked so so smoothly for her whereas I ran into many problems.  I genuinely thought someone might avoid these problems if they were forewarned.

John's comments on FrontPage behavior may indeed reflect his good experience, but mine was less good.  Contrary to what the FrontPage manual says, publishing my web to a server did not correct the absolute links, although all the servers I tried had the FrontPage extensions installed.

The absolute links also appeared in the e-books and bypassed there the password protection because the browser went to the unprotected file in the FrontPage web instead of the protected one in the e-book.  I still have to remove the long paths manually each time before I recompile any of my books.

Similarly, the pictures with the hyperlinked text on them worked fine on my computer but not in the compiler and not on two Unix servers whereas the identical web displayed OK on the Windows server.  The paths to the pictures were the ones FrontPage had established.  I know that this is against all theory, and Sunil did not want to believe it either at first, but then he saw the two webs side by side.  I simply report what happened.

I hope that Diane does not get offended by my calling her lucky  -- I wish people would say that about me -- and that John will admit that some programs, even from mighty Microsoft, sometimes just can have bugs.  I think it is useful to report such experiences, and it is in this spirit that I offered them.

Have a nice day!


Posted on: 9:12 am on June 22, 2002
JohnDodson Yeah your right, Microsoft has more than it's share of bugs.

Try the explanation I gave earlier for fixing the links and see if you have any success.  The thing that I noticed was when I have a "web" open in frontpage and I edit a page, if I save the page by closing it the links are written as absolute.  However, if I make a link and type the relative link in the hyperlink dialog box and save it while the page is open, frontpage saves it exactly as I entered it.  See if that works for you.

A big no-no that I found out also is if you publish a web and then edit and save it later by opening it from the internet into frontpage rather than opening the web that is on you computer, it will rewrite all the links on the pages you opened and saved, and to make matters worse, it will break the extension on the server.  Another thing that will break the extension on the server is posting a web with frontpage and then editing it with an internet html editor that is built into the web host.  Bad, very bad.  This could be what happened to the pics if you edited anything from the internet with either one.

None the less, I really recommend making the project first, and then save pages as you create them into that projects source folder.  Again, making all links and saving the pages before closing them.  Let me know if it works or not.  One other thing, and I'm sure you already have, check your extensions on your computer.  If they need repaired or replaced, they will mess everything up when you save and when you publish.

Good luck Peter.


Posted on: 3:44 pm on June 22, 2002
Peter Aleff Thank you, John,

for your advice.  I usually save my work every few minutes while the page is open and rarely wait til it reminds me upon closing.  (Except, of course, the times before the computer crashes because then I usually lose half an hour's work.)

I have not yet found (or systematically looked for) such a pattern of saving open or closing to correlate with the absolute links, so ever since Sunil discovered them in my pages,  I simply take the precaution to check for them before uploading, and to fix them with the "Replace" routine when there are any.  That way I am sure the links are right, even if it is a little more work for me.

I have never made any changes directly on the site but always on my computer.  However, I thank you for your warning against doing so, I was unaware of that potential danger to the links.

Please let me know what you mean by "extensions" on my computer.  Do you mean file extensions, such as .htm or .gif, or the FrontPage extensions that my hosts need on their server for my web to work?  

I activate occasionally the "Detect and repair" feature of FrontPage in the hope it might fix its bugs, but have never found that it made any difference.

Let me also mention another bug in FrontPage.  It offers you dynamic html, so I used this to make my sub titles drop in as a spiral or word by word.  That looked great on my computer, except those subtitles did not show up at all in Netscape 6.2 or Opera 6.0, and they also did not show up online, whether I had a Unix or Windows server.  They do, however, work in Sunil's compiler, even in a copy of my own book that I downloaded from my site.

I learned then from the Windows knowledge base Q220125 that this happens when you assign a color to the drop-in text.  They recommend to create for that text a new style with that color as default.  However, the Style dialog in my copy of FrontPage does not work, so I made all those subtitles stationary and eliminated all the dynamic effects although they had looked good.  This simplified the site, and the stationary text shows up every time.

For all I know, there may be a way of getting that Style creating to work, but I can spend only limited amounts of time on chasing down stuff that does not do what it should do, and if there is some expedient way to just avoid a problem, even by renouncing a feature, I rather go that way.

I wish I had been forewarned about that dynamic html bug before having to change a couple hundred pages by hand, and I hope my report helps someone else to avoid that.

Thank you again for your comments.


Posted on: 2:44 am on June 24, 2002
JohnDodson Peter,
The extensions that I referred to are the same ones that are installed on your server.  These extensions are included on the FrontPage disc and should install by default but don't always do that, so sometimes you have to install them manually.  The way to do this is to insert your disc, which should bring up the interface giving you an option to "Detect and Repair", "Add and Remove", "Uninstall", and "Install FrontPage Extensions".  If you click the extensions button, it will tell you if they are already installed.  If not, it will install them.

Anything that requires the extensions on your server to function proper, also require them on your PC for you to view them properly, upload them properly, and even create some functions.   I'm not 100% sure, but this could be why your Style function doesn't work.

One other possible solution: With a page your creating open, click on "Tools", then "Page Options", a dialog box with popup, click on the "Compatibility" tab,  then click on the "Browsers:" thumbnail and select "Both Internet Explorer and Navigator", also click on the "Browser versions:" thumb and select "4.0 and higher", last go down to "Technologies" and put a check in every checkbox.  (You'll see one that says DHTML too.)

This will give your pages a much higher across-the-board capability.


Posted on: 4:01 pm on June 24, 2002
Peter Aleff Thank you, John,

for your detailed advice on how to get the bells and whistles in FrontPage 2000 to work.  

It comes to late for me because even if I did get that Style creating feature to do its job, I would not want to apply the correction for the dynamic html to my over 200 pages.  I would have to do it manually: my pages and sub-titles are just different enough so that a Find & Replace program gets stymied, even with tags.  And I am just not ready to put that much time into fixing a cosmetic nicety because now that my basic site is up and clickable, I just want to finish my books.

However, I hope your instructions will help the next readers of this thread who use FrontPage but have not yet fathomed the various idiosynchrasies and tricks of that program.  May your advice save them the time I lost!

By the way, I looked at your site, and I like those programs you offer to make the password selling easier.  Once I build enough traffic to my e-books to run into the problems you describe, I intend to switch to your system.  

Keep up the good work!

Peter Aleff at recoveredscience.com

Posted on: 8:34 am on June 27, 2002
JohnDodson Nope, there's no way I would go back and edit 200 pages either.

The thing with me is I learned to do html and java with frontpage.  I never could bring myself to put the time into learning how to hard code html so I started with frontpage.  From there I spent endless hours finding out that I still had to know something here and there and ways to get around some of frontpage's bad habits.

I eventually just jumped into the middle of java and it still confuses me if I try a project to big.  Anyway, everything I know I learned the hard way.  If you ever need help on something email me and I will do my best to help you with it.

Glad you like my programs.  They were a labor of love once I convinced myself there had to be a way to reduce time spent selling my other ebooks.

Good luck,

Posted on: 2:30 pm on June 27, 2002
Peter Aleff Thank you, John,

for your kind offer of help.  I expect to take you up on it when I get back to improving my site.  For now, I am mostly trying to bring traffic to it because without that, even the most perfectly oiled site is useless.  This is another area where I will need lots of luck.

Meanwhile, accept my best wishes for good fortune to you, and may the Internet trucks heap a mountain of money over your house.

Posted on: 11:32 am on June 29, 2002
Diane Wilson Hey all, I took no offense whatsoever.  I think I succeeded so easily because I know very little about techie stuff so I do it the blonde way!!!! Hmmm win the lottery twice a week?  I wish!  
Now I have a new computer, Frontpage 2002 and Xp   send me a dozen rabbitts feet as I try to make some more ebooks.  


Posted on: 7:40 am on July 1, 2002
Peter Aleff Now I can sleep better, Diane,

now that the threat of your potential wrath for an unintended offense is no longer causing me nightmares.  I am not very computer literate either and used FrontPage because I am too lazy to learn HTML and to do coding by hand.  That is what robots are for.

Your tip on Sunil's board encouraged me to realize my book project, and it is certainly not your fault if I encountered some rocks where you sailed smoothly.  

In case I can reciprocate with a tip that might save you some time: instead of manually copying the files from the FrontPage web, I simply used the "Scan Folder" command in his Compiler's "Edit" menu  and gave it the address of that web on my computer.  That worked fine, and the file names did not get messed up in this step.  You might try it, too, together with the "Refresh Files" command just below it to transfer your updates instantly from the web into the book.

What kind of books are you making?  

I lost the address for the rabbit's feet that make you win the lottery twice a week, but I am sending you hereby a magic spell that will protect you all week long from direct meteorite impacts and herds of stampeding unicorns.

Thanks again for your tip and now for reassuring me.

Peter Aleff

Posted on: 8:16 am on July 1, 2002

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