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Patrick Newton
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Hi,

 

I'm finally trying to take a proactive approach to managing my website and was hoping someone could point me in the right direction. I have zero website related skills but I have fairly good computer skills and am a quick learner. The problem I have is the designer who built my site also uploaded everything and got it running, so I'm helpless to make any changes with out paying him, since I don't know how he did it! I've been through a lot of forum posts and have been through the cPanel users guide from their site but am still lost. Any help is much appreciated! Thanks

 

Patrick

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Hi,

 

I'm finally trying to take a proactive approach to managing my website and was hoping someone could point me in the right direction. I have zero website related skills but I have fairly good computer skills and am a quick learner. The problem I have is the designer who built my site also uploaded everything and got it running, so I'm helpless to make any changes with out paying him, since I don't know how he did it! I've been through a lot of forum posts and have been through the cPanel users guide from their site but am still lost. Any help is much appreciated! Thanks

 

Patrick

 

What specifically do you need help with? Do you need help with getting your website on the servers?

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It sounds like you don't know how to access your files in order to change them. If this is true, then . . .

 

you need an "FTP program" in order to connect to your web server to access your files. You can download a free FTP program from http://filezilla-project.org/. You need to configure the program with your FTP username and password in order to access the server.

 

After you get it set up, drag any file to your desktop that you want to edit. Then upload it after you edit it.

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Hi,

 

I'm finally trying to take a proactive approach to managing my website and was hoping someone could point me in the right direction. I have zero website related skills but I have fairly good computer skills and am a quick learner. The problem I have is the designer who built my site also uploaded everything and got it running, so I'm helpless to make any changes with out paying him, since I don't know how he did it! I've been through a lot of forum posts and have been through the cPanel users guide from their site but am still lost. Any help is much appreciated! Thanks

 

Patrick

 

A lot depends on the framework the designer used. This may not mean anything to you yet, but if he designed the site using HTML and CSS, it will be fairly easy to edit and change (there's still a learning curve, but all the tools to edit the files are free, and there's plenty of information on the net).

 

If the designer used a web design tool like Dreamweaver, it might be more difficult to edit. Dreamweaver outputs "regular" HTML files, but in my experience, the code is pretty convoluted.

 

If the designer used a CMS framework, using template files, it will be harder to find where you make a change that is reflected on your web pages.

 

Post your URL and we can take a look, or, you can use the "View Source" command in your browser (usually under "Tools") to see if there's a reference to a "generator" in the first few lines. For instance, if he used Wordpress as a framework, you would see this line: "<meta name="generator" content="WordPress 3.1" />". Most design tools put such a line in the header information.

 

Once we know what framework he used, we can point you in the right direction for learning how to edit the pages.

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A lot depends on the framework the designer used. This may not mean anything to you yet, but if he designed the site using HTML and CSS, it will be fairly easy to edit and change (there's still a learning curve, but all the tools to edit the files are free, and there's plenty of information on the net).

 

If the designer used a web design tool like Dreamweaver, it might be more difficult to edit. Dreamweaver outputs "regular" HTML files, but in my experience, the code is pretty convoluted.

 

If the designer used a CMS framework, using template files, it will be harder to find where you make a change that is reflected on your web pages.

 

Post your URL and we can take a look, or, you can use the "View Source" command in your browser (usually under "Tools") to see if there's a reference to a "generator" in the first few lines. For instance, if he used Wordpress as a framework, you would see this line: "<meta name="generator" content="WordPress 3.1" />". Most design tools put such a line in the header information.

 

Once we know what framework he used, we can point you in the right direction for learning how to edit the pages.

 

Thanks for the help guys!

 

All I know is he used Codeignitor.. The site is; www.Newton-Med.com

 

Thanks again

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I'm not familiar with Codeignitor, but your web pages look like standard HTML and CSS code. Looks very nice, by the way! The designer did a good job.

 

You will need a HTML editor -- really, any plain text editor will work. I'm partial to PSPad (free from http://www.pspad.com), but there are dozens of free editors available. You will also need to learn some HTML basics. You can start at W3C at http://www.w3.org/standards/webdesign/htmlcss for the official definitions, then use Google for any of the free tutorials. Another option is to check for inexpensive "last generation" HTML or CSS books at the discount book sellers. You can often get the $65 books for $5 to $10, but they are prior versions of the standard. That's OK because most of the stuff is the same from version to version.

 

You could also invest in something like Dreamweaver, which would import the pages and allow you to make changes in a more "what you see is what you get" editor. Others may have recommendations for other tools as well.

 

stocktrader mentioned FileZilla as a FTP program; I use it and like it a lot. For security and simplicity, I would recommend using sFTP on port 22 when downloading and uploading your files. You can also use cPanel's File Manager application to download and upload your files.

 

Its really important to keep a backup of your files. I would download your entire site to a folder/directory on your computer, and don't touch those files again. That way you can restore your site if something goes horribly wrong (and, in my experience, it will!)

 

Good luck!

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I'm not familiar with Codeignitor, but your web pages look like standard HTML and CSS code. Looks very nice, by the way! The designer did a good job.

 

You will need a HTML editor -- really, any plain text editor will work. I'm partial to PSPad (free from http://www.pspad.com), but there are dozens of free editors available. You will also need to learn some HTML basics. You can start at W3C at http://www.w3.org/standards/webdesign/htmlcss for the official definitions, then use Google for any of the free tutorials. Another option is to check for inexpensive "last generation" HTML or CSS books at the discount book sellers. You can often get the $65 books for $5 to $10, but they are prior versions of the standard. That's OK because most of the stuff is the same from version to version.

 

You could also invest in something like Dreamweaver, which would import the pages and allow you to make changes in a more "what you see is what you get" editor. Others may have recommendations for other tools as well.

 

stocktrader mentioned FileZilla as a FTP program; I use it and like it a lot. For security and simplicity, I would recommend using sFTP on port 22 when downloading and uploading your files. You can also use cPanel's File Manager application to download and upload your files.

 

Its really important to keep a backup of your files. I would download your entire site to a folder/directory on your computer, and don't touch those files again. That way you can restore your site if something goes horribly wrong (and, in my experience, it will!)

 

Good luck!

 

 

Thanks for the help, I'll get started digging into some of your suggestion ASAP!

 

I have a little bit of HTML experience from a long time ago but I just don't know which files contain what! I guess the easiest way will be to back it all up and start digging around.

 

Thanks again

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Thanks for the help, I'll get started digging into some of your suggestion ASAP!

 

I have a little bit of HTML experience from a long time ago but I just don't know which files contain what! I guess the easiest way will be to back it all up and start digging around.

 

Thanks again

 

Your home page is probably "index.html" in your public_html folder (it could also be "index.htm"). The rest of your pages will be similar; for instance, if you hover over your "About" link on your home page, you see the destination is http://newton-med.com/about_us ... that's probably a folder under your public_html folder, and in it is probably a "index.html" file that is loaded when you surf to that folder. Your folder structure probably looks something like this:

 

public_html

-about_us

-accessibility

-contact_us

-css

-faqs

-img

-privacy

-sitemap

-terms

 

In most of those folders will be an "index" file that represents one page of your site. If you want to change your phone number on the contact page, you can look in the "contact_us" folder for the "index" file, download it, search for the phone number within the file, edit it, and then upload it back to the same folder. Those kind of changes are going to be easy, but it might be more of a challenge to change images, background colors, etc.

 

Because all of these files are named the same ... probably "index.html" ... you have to make sure you upload the modified file into the right folder!

 

Some folders won't have an "index" file in them. You may have a "cgi" or "cgi-bin" folder I don't show here. The "img" folder I listed contains your site's images (and a couple of folders in there house the source image files the designer used and your slideshow image files). The "css" folder contains your site's CSS (Cascading Style Sheet), where many of the style elements are (background colors, how text appears, how a link turns into a menu item, etc.)

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Your home page is probably "index.html" in your public_html folder (it could also be "index.htm"). The rest of your pages will be similar; for instance, if you hover over your "About" link on your home page, you see the destination is http://newton-med.com/about_us ... that's probably a folder under your public_html folder, and in it is probably a "index.html" file that is loaded when you surf to that folder. Your folder structure probably looks something like this:

 

public_html

-about_us

-accessibility

-contact_us

-css

-faqs

-img

-privacy

-sitemap

-terms

 

In most of those folders will be an "index" file that represents one page of your site. If you want to change your phone number on the contact page, you can look in the "contact_us" folder for the "index" file, download it, search for the phone number within the file, edit it, and then upload it back to the same folder. Those kind of changes are going to be easy, but it might be more of a challenge to change images, background colors, etc.

 

Because all of these files are named the same ... probably "index.html" ... you have to make sure you upload the modified file into the right folder!

 

Some folders won't have an "index" file in them. You may have a "cgi" or "cgi-bin" folder I don't show here. The "img" folder I listed contains your site's images (and a couple of folders in there house the source image files the designer used and your slideshow image files). The "css" folder contains your site's CSS (Cascading Style Sheet), where many of the style elements are (background colors, how text appears, how a link turns into a menu item, etc.)

 

Okay sweet, this got me looking in the right place and it looks like I'm finding some stuff I need.

 

Question: Why would all the index.html files be 'access denied' ?

 

Everything I can get into is a .php file type. I check out the editors mentioned above, is the edit function in cpanels file manager no bueno?

 

Thanks again for all the help

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Okay, so it looks like I got 90% of the numbers changed without ****** everything up...

 

Still have one hold out on my 'contact us' page and I cannot for the life of me find where I need to update this thing...

 

Any ideas? Thanks

 

Which part of the page specifically?

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The phone and fax number on the contact page...

 

This is a guess, but you should have a "index.html" (or "index.htm") page in your public_html/contact_us/ folder. Download it and search for "Phone: (623) 628-8654" in your html editor. If you don't see that file, let us know what files are in the /public_html/contact_us/ folder.

 

Sometimes, the CSS file will have some elements in it, but I didn't see anything like this in your CSS file.

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This is a guess, but you should have a "index.html" (or "index.htm") page in your public_html/contact_us/ folder. Download it and search for "Phone: (623) 628-8654" in your html editor. If you don't see that file, let us know what files are in the /public_html/contact_us/ folder.

 

Sometimes, the CSS file will have some elements in it, but I didn't see anything like this in your CSS file.

 

Every index.html file that is on here tells me "directory access forbidden" which is probably why I couldn't find 90% on my sites actual content. Everything I've been able to change thus far was not in a index.html file..

 

Any ideas why these files would be restricted? or how I can change that? Thanks

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Every index.html file that is on here tells me "directory access forbidden" which is probably why I couldn't find 90% on my sites actual content. Everything I've been able to change thus far was not in a index.html file..

 

Any ideas why these files would be restricted? or how I can change that? Thanks

 

Are you accessing the directories with a FTP program or through cPanel's File Manager application?

 

What type of file have you been editing to make changes so far?

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Are you accessing the directories with a FTP program or through cPanel's File Manager application?

 

What type of file have you been editing to make changes so far?

 

I've downloaded files both ways and still the same result... Used File Manager and Zilezilla

 

I was able to make the other changes in .php files

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I've downloaded files both ways and still the same result... Used File Manager and Zilezilla

 

I was able to make the other changes in .php files

 

Are they "index.php" or other files? It may be that the designer is using a "content management system" and stripping the identifying info out of the headers so they look like standard HTML pages. If that's the case, the numbers could be stored in a database rather than in a static file on disk.

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Are they "index.php" or other files? It may be that the designer is using a "content management system" and stripping the identifying info out of the headers so they look like standard HTML pages. If that's the case, the numbers could be stored in a database rather than in a static file on disk.

 

there is one "index.php" but everything else named "index" is html

 

everything else is "home.php", "about_us.php", etc...

 

They are located at: /public_html/application/controllers

 

I'll keep digging...Thanks again

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You'll find it eventually. Its evidently part of CodeIgnitor (that I'm not familiar with), but the page here indicates the file name should be the page name ... so "home.php" and "about_us.php" seem to make sense. I'm assuming you aren't finding a "contact_us.php" file!

 

Maybe that page will help you understand the format of the site better, although it looks like you have discovered it the old fashioned way ... digging and working through it.

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You'll find it eventually. Its evidently part of CodeIgnitor (that I'm not familiar with), but the page here indicates the file name should be the page name ... so "home.php" and "about_us.php" seem to make sense. I'm assuming you aren't finding a "contact_us.php" file!

 

Maybe that page will help you understand the format of the site better, although it looks like you have discovered it the old fashioned way ... digging and working through it.

 

Yeah I've found all the contact_us.php / home.php / etc... just doesn't have what I'm looking for apparently!

 

Oh well, the search goes on..Thanks for the help thus far I greatly appreciate it.

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Yeah I've found all the contact_us.php / home.php / etc... just doesn't have what I'm looking for apparently!

 

Oh well, the search goes on..Thanks for the help thus far I greatly appreciate it.

 

Combination php and html files can be hard to figure out at first. Look for an "echo" statement in the file. The problem is that if you misplace a semi-colon or put an extra space in the wrong place it can break the layout.

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