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Which software do I use for web development

Posted on 2003-11-14
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Last Modified: 2013-12-25
My boss tells me we need a web site, and we needed last week. I've played around with HTML, Perl and Java. I've put together a Power Point of what I want the client side to look like. The users will need to customize and pull up reports from our SQL server running MS Access as a front end. Security is important - usernames and passwords can be setup offline. We won't be taking credit card info. But, we need to limit access to the reports based on the customer's username. We are not interested in lots of glitz - functional is more important. We may have a couple hundred usernames. We own Frontpage 2002. We have commercial DSL with a static IP. It is more important to have something up and running fast than to have it complete.

1. Will Frontpage do what I want or is there good reason to spend the extra bucks for dot net? Or is something else better?

2. I would like to hire someone by the hour to help me get started and help me over the hurddles. Doesn't matter where you are geographically (just people in the US and Canada please). We can do everything by phone and on the internet. But if you are in the Boca Raton, FL area - it wouldn't hurt. It would help if I can pay you with a credit card. I might be able to pay you with Paypal

3. I'm in a rush (see my first sentence). If possible, I'd like to show my boss something on Monday (11/17). Doesn't have to be complete, but I would like to show that I can get the job done quickly. This assumes that going with Frontpage is the right way to go.
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Question by:kantrowitz
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by:Bit_Twiddler
ID: 9756359
It's not 100% clear what you are trying to accomplish since you mention the users will need to customize and pull up reports. Could you elaborate?  

FP can design pages that connect to and interact with databases but unless you plan on hand coding Active Server Pages in FP you will have to rely on FP's wizards. It may get the job done but making it all work the way you want it may be cumbersome depending on what you want as an end result.

Macomedia's Dreamweaver might be a better choice if your wanting to do something with databases, But you will need time to learn it's ins and outs.

But the actual design tool you use is only part of the equation. You will need a web server to host the pages and your choice in that area will depend on the traffic you expect and a host of other issues.  You will need to make a choice as to whether you want to use PHP, ASP, ASP.net, JSP or some other means to develop the web application or applications. Since you mention security as a issue you will have to look at a firewall in addition to a client login etc.

One thought ... If you are in a rush... is to do the forms or reports in Access and export them as HTML pages then publish them to your server.  The resulting code will be on the bloated side but it may help speed up the process.

Also If you are looking to solicit someone for hire, this is not the forum to do this as it is against the guidelines here on EE as I understand them.
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by:kantrowitz
ID: 9757513
Thank you for your answer. In order for the user to get the report they want, they will have to enter some details about the report - date range and which fields they want displayed. What they submit will be turned into a sql query.  It isn't clear from your answer if FP will do this. I hope this added piece of info will clarify my question.

I'm not looking for someone to do the development for me - I'm looking more for some hand holding.
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Bit_Twiddler earned 250 total points
ID: 9758601
Thanks for your clarification.  What you want to accomplish can be done using FP but the bulk of it would have to be done by hand coding inside FP's HTML view and not by using FP's wizard or templates. In my opinion Dreamweaver MX would be a better tool to use.  

But that is getting ahead of things.  The first thing you need to decide is what development language and technology you are going to use and that depends on what webserver you are going to be hosting the site on.

For the sake of argument I'm going to assume you will be running on Microsoft's Internet Information Services (IIS). If that is the case then one way to accomplish what you want to do is to use Active Server Pages (ASP) and use either  GET/PUT or server variables to pass the input from the date range and fields they want displayed which would get assembled into your SQL query and then run.

In any case which ever route you choose it most certainly will involve some hand coding since to do what you want to do requires using  HTML embedded programming languages.  VBScript or JavasScript in the case of Active Server Pages,  PHP,  Java in the case of Java Server Pages, CFML in the case Cold Fusion and Visual Basic or
C# in the case of ASP.Net. Just to mention a few routes you could take.

One reason I mentioned Dreamweaver MX is that all of the mentioned languages are supported by it.
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