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Chapter 4. Browsing with Macromedia Contribute > Browsing Connected Websites

Browsing Connected Websites

As easy as it is to browse to sites with Contribute (just as you already do with your favorite browser), it's even easier to reach sites with which you have established a connection. In addition to allowing you to enter the page address directly into the Address field, Contribute gives you direct access to certain types of pages within connected sites. You can browse to any of the following:

  • Home pages

  • Linked and unlinked pages within the site

  • Drafts of pages you've worked on, but not published

  • Recently published (last 10) pages

In most cases, these options are available both through a menu choice and through a button or onscreen link.

Jumping to Home Pages

Immediately after defining a connection, Contribute jumps to the home page of the site. A home page is the web page that is displayed when a visitor browses to the site's domain, such as www.bountygeneral.com. In addition, the connection is automatically added to a list found under the Home Pages button on the toolbar. To go directly to a site's home page, just select the connection under Home Pages, as shown in Figure 4.2.

4.2. Direct access to all connected sites is available through the Home Pages button.

If you prefer to use the menus, you'll find the same list of sites under View > Home Pages.

Test Drive 4.1 Browse to the Bounty General Home Page

Let's check out what's happening at Bounty General:

Select Home Pages from the toolbar.

Choose Bounty General.

We'll be browsing through the BountyGeneral.com site as we take other Test Drives in this chapter.

Visiting Linked and Unlinked Pages

Chances are, much of your work will be updating pages within the site and not the home page. If the pages you need to modify are directly linked to the home page, the fastest way to reach them would be to jump to the home page, as described in the previous section, and select the appropriate link.


The names shown under Home Pages are taken from the connection name. You can change those names by selecting Edit > My Connections, selecting the site, and choosing Rename.

But what if the page is buried deep in the site structure—or worse, what if the page is not accessible from a link at all? Don't worry. Contribute offers a file Explorer-like interface that allows you to browse to any web page within your site.

To browse to any page within a connected site, follow these steps:

Browse to the home page of your site by choosing its name from the Home Pages button.

If you're already in your site on another page, you don't need to return to the home page.

Select the Choose button, located on the toolbar to the right of the Go button. (You can also use the menus—View > Choose File on Website—or a keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+Shift+O.)

The Choose File on Website dialog appears, as shown in Figure 4.3.

4.3. Navigate to any file on your site by first selecting Choose from the toolbar.

If a file is within a folder, open the folder by double-clicking it or by selecting it and choosing Open.

Preview any file by selecting it; the preview appears on the right side of the dialog box (see Figure 4.3).

Open any file by double-clicking it or selecting it and clicking OK.

After Contribute opens the selected file in Browse mode, you can select Edit Page to begin making your modifications.

Test Drive 4.2 Find the Employee of the Month Page

Bounty General's Human Resources department regularly designates an employee of the month. Let's find out who has been awarded the honor this month:

Make sure you're already showing the home page or another page in the Bounty General site.

Select the Choose button on the toolbar to open the Choose File on Website dialog box.

Double-click the hr folder.

Double-click employee_of_month.htm, as shown in Figure 4.4.

4.4. Even unlinked pages, like this Employee of the Month page, can be reached by way of the Choose File on Website dialog box.

We'll revisit this page in the next Test Drive.

Opening Draft Pages

With Contribute, you can always save your work in progress, which is called a draft. These drafts are stored on your local system and can be edited at any time, even when you're offline (not connected to a site or the Internet). Contribute keeps a handy list of your drafts available for you. If you have the Sidebar open, your drafts are shown in the Pages section (Figure 4.5). Selecting a draft immediately opens it in Contribute, ready for you to edit.

4.5. Return to any unpublished draft page by selecting it from the Pages area of the Sidebar.

Viewing Recently Published Pages

One thing that's definitely true about an active website is that certain pages are never quite finished. When you find you need to make corrections to a page that you've recently published, Contribute makes those pages easy to find because it keeps track of the previous 10 pages you published. To open one of your latest published pages, choose View > Recently Published Pages and select a file from the list, as shown in Figure 4.6.

4.6. Contribute makes it possible to jump right back into a recently published page and begin editing.

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