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Building Your First Web Site?
Creating your own site can be a satisfying experience. Here are some tips to help get you up and running.
Before doing anything on the technical side, you need some kind of basic idea to work with. I suggest first getting some paper and a pencil. Start by sketching a layout of how you would like your web page to appear. For example, a simple title at the top, the area in which you would like any content, pictures and so on. Now its time to do some programing!
Don't let the word programing scare you. Anyone can learn and there are several sites that offer free tutorials. One such site is http://www.w3schools.com/html/default.asp. Although it is not necessary to be a top notch programer to build and operate your web site, you should learn the basics of html. I recommend that you thoroughly learn about tables. They are widely used and with them, you can create a professional looking layout (even as a beginner).
You can use any basic text editor, like notepad, to write, edit, and save your code (html). When saving your work for the first time, choose Text Document for type of file, then save with the extension htm (for example index.htm). Your home page (the first page people usually see) is normally saved as index.htm. To see how your page looks, double click on the file and it should automatically open up in your browser.
Now that you've got your web page ready to go, it's time to find a host (a place for your web page to live). Since this is your first site, I suggest you use Free Web Hosting. Some host will put advertising, such as a banner, on your site as the cost of free hosting. Others will only charge you to register your Domain Name (www.YourSite.com). Be careful not to accidentally sign up for extras such as url protection, spam control, etc. (unless you feel you need them) as they will add to your cost. These sites will have a limit on bandwidth (how much data that can be transmitted per month), email accounts, and maybe a few other things, but are still great for first timers. If later on you feel you need more, then you usually can upgrade. To find a host, just use any search engine and the keyword phrase Free Web Hosting.
Ok! You've sketched a layout for your web page, learned some basic html, coded your web page, found your host with the most (couldn't resist), and registered your URL (www.YourSite.com). Now it's time to upload (transfer) your file (web page ) to your host. To do this you need a FTP program. FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. When using this application, there are usually two windows. The left window shows your computer files, and the right window shows the files stored on your host. For a good tutorial and to download a freeware FTP program, FTP Commander, go to http://www.nexcess.net/hosting/support/tutorials/ftp/ftpcommindex.php.
Now you should be up and running. But don't stop there. Continue to tweak, add pages, learn to link to other pages and sites, and frequently add new content. Who knows, you could eventually learn to profit from your creation.
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