Virginia Montecino
Home Education and Technology Resources  |  How-to Guides  |

Create Web Pages with Netscape 7.x Composer
This is a work-in-progress.  I appreciate suggestions and corrections.
 Using an html editor, like Netscape Composer, can make it easier to create long documents with lots of links and graphics and documents with tables.  Programs like Dreamweaver and Microsoft Front Page can help you do more complex things, like create forms and frames.  See more Web publishing resources.
[Remember, after you create a new Web page or edit an existing one using a Web publishing program, you then need to send it to your Web directory by publishing it. Remember, your home page file must be named index.html.] 

Create a new Web page:

1. Click on the File pull-down menu (top, left-hand corner), select New. Then select Composer Page to start from scratch. 
OR:  From the bar in the lower, leftt-hand corner of the screen, click on the composer icon (composer) icon. 

A blank "page" composer page looks very much like a blank wordprocessing page.  You can bold, center, change font style and size, insert images, etc. just as you can in a wordprocessor.

The color of text can be changed by highlighting the text and then clicking on the color icon (font color icon)  and selecting the color. Or select color from the Format menu (near the top of the Composer window). 

You can change page colors and properties (such as color of links and background) by selecting the Formatoption, then Page Colors and Properties.

Other options include alignment choices: allignment icon . Indenting does not work as in a wordprocessor. Notice the alignment "buttons," which allow you to justify left, right and center text. You can also adjust font sizes: from smaller: -a to larger: +a, underlining text.

Edit a Web Page that has already been published:

Click on the File pull-down menu and choose Edit Page. Save the page (click on the File pull-down menu and choose Save or Save As) to your hard drive or diskette drive. 

Basic functions:

Format options
Web-specific formatting tags (below the File and Edit options on the Toolbar) can be selected from a list of options in the pull-down menu.  The options let you format headings, list items, italicize addresses, etc. Try them out and see the results.

The paragraph icon (paragraph) icon lets you choose options such as "pre" (leave the formatting as is in plain text),  Heading formats (1 is the largest size), and address (italicized.

Insert Links
Type in the name of the Web page you want to link to. Highlight the name, then click on the link icon (link) icon or select the Insert command from the menu at the top of the Composer window. Then copy and paste the Web address (URL) in the box.

Insert Images
Select the image icon (image) icon to insert an image,  or select the Insert pull-down menu and select Image.  Then at the "Image location" window, select "Choose file."  Find the location of the image file (The image must be in .jpg or .gif format). Click on the image file name, then select OK.  The image must be sent to your public_html directory space. It does not automatically transfer when you send your HTML file.

Align Images 

Right-click on the image that you inserted and select Image Properties.You can select dimensions; appearance; link; left , right or center alignmentand other options.  You can also select options to adjust the relationship of your text to an image.  Experiment with the choices to see the effects. 

Insert a Table
- Place the cursor where you want the table to appear.  Select the table icon (table) icon or click on the Insert pull-down menu and select Table.  You can select a border or no border, the number of rows and columns, the alignment, size, and in Advanced options, cell padding, border and width options.  Percent (%) widths cause tables to stretch or shrink depending upon the size of the computer screen. Pixel widths are absolute and your table size will be more stable.

- To insert or delete rows or columns, insert the cursor in the row above the one you want to add.  Right click with your mouse.  Then select insert or delete and choose the appropriate option. 

- To readjust a table, right-click anywhere in the table and select Table Properties. You can change the relative size of cells, size of table, etc.

Spell check your Web page
Click the on the Edit pull-down menu at the top of the screen and select Check Spelling

Preview Your Web Page:

First, save any changes by pressing the Save button.  Then, select the preview in browser icon (navigation wheel) to preview your Web page in the browser rather than the editing/composing page. (Or from the File menu, select Browse Page. A Navigator browser window will open displaying the page.

View or Edit the HTML Code:

To create HTML documents with Composer, you do not need to know html.  But if you do, you can have control over your html material and "tweak" things.  HTML editing programs do not always produce the results you want. To view the HTML source code which Composer is creating, select the View menu at the top of the screen and select HTML SourceYou can also edit your source html code if the Composer program did not accurately code what you want.

Publish Your Web Document (transfer your .html file from your computer to your mason server directory (public_html):

Warning: When you publish a new version of an old file, your original file will be overwritten if it has the same name.  So keep a copy of your old file. 

Publish using WSftp:

Though Netscape 7x has a built-in publishing option, it is tricky to set up the account and server settings.  I prefer to use a program like WSftp (Windows only))to publish my files and upload images.  I feel I have more control. 

Download a free copy of WSFTP LE (Iimited edition) if you are an educator or student. 

See these instructions for how to use WSftp.

With WSftp you can rename files and see all of the files in your Web directory.  It is easy to accidentally delete files. So keep a back up of your Web files on a disk or hard drive. 

If you have a MAC, use the Fetch ftp program.

Virginia Montecino   |   Home  | Education and Technology Resources  |  How-to Guides  |  |   top
© Virginia Montecino  updated Nov 2002