iWeb for Musicians

How To Plan The Website Layout

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Site Layout

Unless you plan to keep your website small with only a few pages, you need to think carefully about how to structure it. If you keep adding pages, the navigation menu will grow huge and start to overpower the content.

For a medium sized site of up to about 30 pages you can get away with having Main pages and Sub pages.

These sub sites can be built on separate domain files so that they can be loaded into iWeb, updated and published individually.

This saves a lot of time if you are building several websites and/or sub sites.

Its common practice in the iWeb community to build several sites on one domain file and then split them off to separate ones by duplicating the domain file as many times as you want and then deleting the surplus sites. Each domain file is then kept in a separate folder and launched in iWeb by double clicking it.

You can also use a third party application like iWebSites to handle these files.

To avoid the possibility of domain file corruption and the inevitable loss of websites, I like to build my sites on fresh blank domain files and I keep one in a folder so that I can duplicate it to start a new site.

The best time to create and save this blank domain file is when you only have one domain file and its in the default  location - Home Folder/Library/Application Support/iWeb. Quit iWeb, drag this file into the trash, relaunch iWeb and the application will create a new one. Save this with just one blank page and drag it into a suitably named folder for future use and then reinstate your original one from the trash.

I keep all my domain files in separate folders in a “master” folder called iWeb which is located in my Home Folder.

The iWeb folder is kept in a second Dock created with application Dock-It. This way I can launch any site with just two mouse clicks.

Sub Sites

When your sub site is ready, publish it to a local folder.

The files for the website “VisualMedia” are shown in [A].

Change the name of the index.html file to SubSiteName.html as in figure [B].

Upload both the file and the folder to the root folder on your server.

The URL to get to any page on this sub site is.......




Large Sites

If you plan to have a site with more than 20 to 30 pages you should consider building your site on several domain files. This makes it a lot easier to handle by allowing you to load the sections into iWeb, update and publish them one at a time.

iWeb for Musicians is built this way. The sections are linked by a main navigation menu that employs external hyperlinks. The individual sections are navigated using a sub menu that uses  internal links.

You can see how the site is structured at .......... http://www.iwebformusicians.com/iWebMusicWebsite/WebsiteMap.html

Separate Domain Files

Backup, Backup, Backup.....

Due to iWeb’s inability to import published files its essential to keep up to date backups of your Domain files. Even if you have a Time Machine backup, its a good idea to upload a copy of the current Domain file to your server every time you publish changes. This way you will be covered if your hard drive crashes or your house burns down!

Main Menu:  Landing Page  |  Music  |  Movies  |  Video  |  Info  |  Contact

You can use the iWeb default navigation for the Main pages and exclude the Sub pages from this using the Page inspector. From the point of view of Search Engine Optimization and Browser Compatibility its better to build a custom one in a text box.

The sub navigation has to be built in a text box and can be horizontal or vertical to suit your page layout.

Above is an example of a horizontal main navigation layout. Each page title is that of a main page and the title is created as a hyperlink to it.

On the music page, and its associated sub pages, there is a sub navigation menu to link to the individual album pages.

In these examples, all my links point to this page!

Sub Sites

Larger sections of a website can be built as a Sub Site. In my example, I have created a sub site named Visual Media.

The sub site is published separately and uploaded as a folder to the root folder on the server. It has its own navigation menu and is included as an external hyperlink in the main navigation menu of the primary site.

The URL will be - http://www.domain.com/Sub-Site-Name/

There are a couple points to note with iWeb when you are running Lion.

The User/Library folder is hidden so you need to access it from the Finder "Go" menu.

Choose "Go to Folder...", Shift-Command-G, enter this into the window...


... and click the "Go" button.

iWeb & Lion OS X 10.7

If you are working with multiple Domain.sites2 files they won't open in Lion. Click HERE to download DomainCracker.app and drag it into the Dock [A]. Click the the app to get the window shown below [B] and browse to the Domain file.



Copyright © Roddy McKay - 2009 - All Rights Reserved

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