How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files

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Open the Dreamweaver Site Manager

Open the Site Manager
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Open the Site Manager.

Dreamweaver comes with built-in FTP functionality, which is nice because you don't need to have a separate FTP client to upload your document files to your Web server.

Dreamweaver assumes that you will have a duplicate of your Web site structure on your hard drive. So in order to set up a file transfer setting, you need to set up a site in Dreamweaver. Once you've done that you'll be ready to connect your site to a Web server using FTP.

Dreamweaver also offers other methods to connect to Web servers, including WebDAV and local directories, but this tutorial will take you through FTP in-depth.

Go to the Site menu and choose Manage Sites. This will open the site manager dialog box.

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Choose the Site to Transfer Files

Choose the Site
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Choose the Site.

I have set up three sites in Dreamweaver "Dreamweaver Examples," "Hilltop Stables," and "Peripherals." If you have not created any sites, you'll need to create one to set up file transfer in Dreamweaver.

Select the site and click on "Edit."

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Advanced Site Definition

Advanced Site Definition
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Advanced Site Definition.

If it doesn't open in this field automatically, click on the "Advanced" tab to move into the Advanced site definition information.

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Remote Info

Remote Info
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Remote Info.

Transferring files to the server is done through the Remote Info pane. As you can see, my site has no remote access configured.

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Change the Access to FTP

Change the Access to FTP
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Change the Access to FTP.

As you can see, there are several options for file transfer. The most common is FTP.

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Fill in FTP Info

Fill in FTP Info
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Fill in FTP Info.

Make sure that you have FTP access to your web hosting server. Contact your host to get the details.

Fill in the FTP details with the following:

  • FTP host: the machine name of your web server. If you don't know what this is, contact your hosting provider.
  • Host directory: the path to your web site. This is often "public_html" but might be www or something else.
  • Login / Password: your login name and password.
  • Passive FTP: check this box if you can't connect with it unchecked.
  • Firewall: check this box if you're behind a firewall.
  • Secure FTP (SFTP): some servers only allow connections via secure FTP.

The last three check boxes refer to how Dreamweaver interacts with the FTP. Synchronization information is good to keep checked, because then Dreamweaver knows what it has transferred and not. You can set Dreamweaver to upload files automatically when you save them. And if you have check in and check out enabled, you can do this automatically on file transfer.

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Test Your Settings

Test Your Settings
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Test Your Settings.

Dreamweaver will test the connection settings. Sometimes it will test so quickly you don't even see this dialog window.

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FTP Errors Are Common

FTP Errors are Common
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files FTP Errors are Common.

It's easy to mis-type your password. If you get this window, check your username and password. If that doesn't work, try switching Dreamweaver to Passive FTP and then to Secure FTP. Some hosting providers forget to tell you if that's required.

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Successful Connection

Successful Connection
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Successful Connection.

Testing the connection is important, and most of the time, you'll get this message.

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Server Compatibility

Server Compatibility
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Server Compatibility.

If you're still having problems with transferring your files, click on the "Server Connectivity" button. This will open the server connectivity window. These are two more options to help you troubleshoot your FTP connection.

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Local / Network Connection

Local / Network Connection
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Local / Network Connection.

Dreamweaver can connect your web site to a local or network server. Use this access option if your web site is on the same network as your local machine.

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WebDAV

WebDAV
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files WebDAV.

WebDAV stands for "Web-based Distributed Authoring and Versioning". If your server supports WebDAV you can use it to connect your Dreamweaver site to your server.

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RDS

RDS
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files RDS.

RDS stands for "Remote Development Services". This is a ColdFusion access method.

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Microsoft Visual SourceSafe

MS Visual SourceSafe
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files MS Visual SourceSafe.

Microsoft Visual SourceSafe is a Windows program to allow you to connect to your server. You need VSS version 6 or higher to use it with Dreamweaver.

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Save Your Site Configuration

Save Your Site Configuration
How to Set up Dreamweaver to Transfer Files Save Your Site Configuration.

Once you're done configuring and testing your access, click the OK button, and then the Done button.

Then you're done, and you can use Dreamweaver to transfer files to your Web server.