AcademyX's Dreamweaver course will illustrate how to use these features in a practical web site application.
Passing Simple Variables with the URL and Dreamweaver Bindings
Dreamweaver makes most tasks easy to perform regardless of the server technology you employ by isolating the common feature sets and writing the appropriate code for you. For instance, we will share information from one file to another file using the URL string to pass information from one page through a link to the next page. We will experiment with the ColdFusion version and compare how one would do the same thing with Dreamweaver/ASP and Dreamweaver/PHP.
Sharing Form Data across Pages with Form Variable Bindings
When a user types information into a form and then submits that form, the information is passed to the server and may be retrieved and used by subsequent pages. We will establish a new binding in Dreamweaver so that we may greet a visitor by name after they've filled out a registration form.
Dreamweaver: Forms and Validation
Web forms consist of a number of input devices used to collect information from the visitor. In the Advanced Dreamweaver class, we will discuss the various input fields and learn how to perform basic client-side validation. If the visitor fails to supply information for a given text field or if the visitor provides faulty information, we can alert the user of his or her mistake before the information is sent to the server-side processor.
Sending an Email with a Contact Form
ColdFusion is a server technology language developed by Macromedia (now part of Adobe) and often provides simplified solutions to common problems. To send an email when a user submits a form can requires some programming with PHP or ASP, but ColdFusion makes this a simple task that we can implement in the Dreamweaver Advanced class. You will :
- Examine the code for retrieving form information (previous exercise).
- Use the CFMail dialogue box to insert the basic code.
- Substitute the appropriate fields to get the visitor's name and email.
Server Behaviors: Adding Dynamic Text and Images from a Database
Information stored in a database can be retrieved upon the request of a web page to dynamically add new information to a website. In class you will:
- Specify the data source (the database) to be used.
- Examine the tables/fields.
- Query the database for a set of results (dataset).
- Use a field in the dataset to add dynamic text to the page.
- Use a field in the datase to specify the source file of a dynamic image on the page.
Application Objects: Creating Master Page and Detail Pages for Databases
Retrieving dynamic information from a database can be easy when its a simple field with one result. It can be more difficult to set up a list of many records from the database and individual pages with details for each item in that list. Dreamweaver provides a tool to dynamically create the Master and Detail pages. It will let you specify the number of records to show per screen, and it will generate forward and backward links as appropriate. We will create a query and then use Dreamweaver to dynamically generate our content.
Server Behavior : Inserting Rows into a Database Table
Gathering information from a webpage to be inserted into a database is an extremely easy feature to implement using Dreamweaver. If you've established the form and the form fields, it is simply a matter of adding a server behavior to Insert Record. Once you've selected the behavior, you specify which form fields map to the fields in the database table. In class we will create two different forms that insert records into an existing database.
Updating Records in a Database
When you retrieve dynamic content from a database, the data can appear as plain text (content) or it can be used to pre-fill form fields. For instance, we will create a webpage that retrieves information from a database and uses that to pre-fill text fields. We will then allow the user to update certain fields and then submit the new information into the database.
User Authentication: Login Pages and Restricted Access
Among the server behaviors and application objects that Dreamweaver provides, User Authentication allows a developer to require a visitor to login before accessing certain information. Dreamweaver crafts the session variables necessary to restrict access of certain pages to visitors who have logged in. In this exercise you will:
- Create a login page.
- Add a server behavior to login the user, specifying the username & password information from the database
- Establish a login failed page.
- Restrict access of certain "sensitive" pages to logged in users only
- Redirect users who are not logged in to the log in page