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index page problems with frames

Posted on 2004-03-25
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Last Modified: 2010-04-06
I have an index page that uses frame for the banner, left and main sections ...

Recently the index page on the web only displays the banner and the rest is just whit ...

I have checked in front page and the three pages display fiine in normal mode, but two are lost under preview ...

I can't seem to fix this ... I have replaced the main and left frames with diffent pages and they won't display ...

How do I fix this and what causes it ... it has happened in the past a couple of times and I had a backup that
worked ...

My site is down due to this ...
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Question by:AEII
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26 Comments
 
LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:bruno
ID: 10682646
can you post the code here for me to take a look at, or a link to the site?

bruno
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10682748
What did you use to create the page? Dreamweaver? GoLive?
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Expert Comment

by:bruno
ID: 10683182
hey weed ltns...
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Author Comment

by:AEII
ID: 10684285
The link to the site is:
 
www.qasidirect.com

I did not develop the site originally, I believe it was done in dreamweaver ...

I use Front Page 2002 to manage it and make minore corrections ...
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Expert Comment

by:j3one
ID: 10684325
I would just combine the top image with the main page, unless you are wanting to open content only in the bottom frame. I would lean away from frames If I were you. It will make the design easyer and more profional...
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10684346
Ok, the fact that you're using frontpage says alot. It worked, you edited with frontpage, and now its whacky. Frontpage re-writes html in all sorts of crazy non-standard ways. Run it through Dreamweaver, let it clean up the code, fix any lingering cosmetic problems and re-publish it without taking it to FrontPage.
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Author Comment

by:AEII
ID: 10684391
I understand your comments, but none are options ...

1) I don't have dreamweaver ...

2) I use front page ...

3) I don't plan to rewrite the site anytime soon ... just get the page to work again ...
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10684398
Whether you realize it or not, frontpage is rewriting the site without you knowing it. When you open a site in FP, edit it, then save, it mangles the HTML. That's why it no longer works.
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Author Comment

by:AEII
ID: 10684442
I do understand what you are saying ... can the index file be fixed or run through dreamweaver (by someone other than me)
and fixed ?

Do all three files need to be run through dreamweaver ?

It seems to only happen on the index page ... all other pages are not affected ...

I don't have this problem with any of the 25 other sites I have developed and manage with FP ...
I am not a Microsoft groupey, but I use FP for all other 25 sites and need to due to my abilities ...

If this can be repaired ... I will just make sure to make enough backups in case it does it again ...

I did not edit the file this time ...
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10684470
I would run EVERYTHING you've ever edited with FP, through Dreamweaver. It could be done by anyone who knows what theyre doing, and can run the proper cleanup scripts.

Also keep in mind that FP generated pages often look fine in IE because IE *likes* butchered HTML, but in other browsers it can look very different or not work at all.

I cant recommend highly enough that you invest in Dreamweaver. It's a far better WYSIWYG HTML editor.
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Expert Comment

by:Lobo042399
ID: 10684678
Hi AEII,

I agree completely with Weed there and for one more reason. Anyone of us could clean up the code in Dreamweaver and send the files back to you; but next time you do editing in FrontPage you risk getting into this problem again, so it won't be a real fix, only a bandaid.  At $399 Dreamweaver is a good investment.

Good Vibes!

Lobo
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10684689
I think webwoman would also agree. She has in the past.
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Expert Comment

by:HaydnH
ID: 10685697
"At $399 Dreamweaver is a good investment."

For $399 I'd consider teaching youself HTML and using a text editor to edit the pages. No matter what wysiwyg editor you use it will never be as clean as a hand coded page.

Haydn.
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Author Comment

by:AEII
ID: 10686482
Everyone so far,

I appreciate your recommendations regarding Dreamweaver, I really do, and I understand your position
and advise ... but this is not a solution.

1) I am not planning to purchase Dreamweaver (I do have Version 3.0, can this fix the code ?)
2) We outsourced the development of this specific site, we will continue to outsource if required in the future
3) I do not plan to convert from Front Page to manage the other sites, and all other sites designed in FP work fine

The comment about the bandaide is not a correct analogy ... more from my point of view ..

I go into an emergency room with my leg cut badly at an artery ... the doctor(your advise) comes in and sees
that I am bleeding to death (the website is down) ... and wants me to go on a low fat diet with exercise to reduce my blood pressure ... and I consequently bleed to death ...

I am a president of a small consulting and training organization, again, what can be done to stop the bleeding ? I will begin the diet and exercise once I can walk again ...
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Expert Comment

by:HaydnH
ID: 10686623
"what can be done to stop the bleeding?"

Ok, lets look at the code for the framset, this is located in the index.htm file of the website, as it stands:

________________________________________________________________________________

<frameset rows="141,526*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
  <frameset cols="*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
  <frame name="topFrame" scrolling="NO" noresize src="banner.htm" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" >
  </frameset>
  <frameset cols="*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
  <frameset frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0" rows="*">
    <frameset cols="153,862*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
    <frame name="leftFrame" noresize scrolling="NO" src="nav.htm" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0">

    <frame name="mainFrame" src="main.htm" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="auto">
    </frameset>
  </frameset>
  </frameset>
</frameset>
________________________________________________________________________________


As you can see you've got 5 frame sets to contain 3 frames - not good! I suggest you open the index.htm file in a text editor and change it to the following: (make a back up first!!)

________________________________________________________________________________
<html>
<head>
<title>QASI: Quality Assurance Systems International</title>
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1">
</head>

<frameset rows="141,526*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
  <frame name="topFrame" scrolling="NO" noresize src="banner.htm" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" >
    <frameset cols="153,862*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
      <frame name="leftFrame" noresize scrolling="NO" src="nav.htm" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0">
      <frame name="mainFrame" src="main.htm" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="auto">
    </frameset>
</frameset>

<noframes><body bgcolor="#FFFFFF">

</body></noframes>
</html>
________________________________________________________________________________


This will fix the problem of the frames not drawing. You can open it in a browser to confirm it's working at this point. Now I suggest you open the page in FP again, save it and see if FP puts the "junk code" back in. I'm assuming it won't and so the the bleeding will have stopped.

If you have any problems with this, please post back here.

Regards,

Haydn.
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Accepted Solution

by:
HaydnH earned 250 total points
ID: 10687336
I've just looked at the QASI url and see it's working now, what stage are you at? Pre resaving in FP? or after resaving in FP?

Haydn.
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Author Comment

by:AEII
ID: 10688727
I finally found a backup of the index file ... made several more backups and uploaded it ...

I appreciate your support and help ... I know very little about HTML language, but understand the programming logic

If it was just the extra framesets, if it ever happens again, I will know where to possibly begin ...

Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:Lobo042399
ID: 10691980
>>For $399 I'd consider teaching youself HTML and using a text editor to edit the pages.

Considering our friend AEII can afford to have his website down for the few moths that it'd take him to learn to code in HTML, sure!

It was never implied that Dreamweaver produces clean pages; what was implied was that FrontPage uses garbage code and non-standard tags.

Lobo
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Author Comment

by:AEII
ID: 10692007
And your point is ???
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10692066
The point is that writing the HTML by hand would be even cleaner than Dreamweaver, but it's just not practical to take the few months it would take to learn HTML. Dreamweaver's code isn't perfect but its FAR better than anything FP produces and far faster than learning HTML.

FP will get the job done, for a while anyway, but it's like limping along on 3 cylinders instead of all 6. Eventually all your sites will run into problems similar to this one purely because of bad FP code. As experts here at EE we see all the issues folks have and FP is responsible for the vast majority of the "poorly written code" HTML problems.
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Expert Comment

by:Lobo042399
ID: 10692216
AEII,

There's nothing personal in my comment. The whole point is, as Weed explains, that as long as you continue to use FrontPage you'll have code problems. Let me explain the reason.  Some guy at Microsoft comes with a brilliant idea, How about a HTML tag that makes images invisible? Cool! Another guy decides it's a really good idea and includes the new <INVIS> tag into FrontPage while another guy at Microsoft takes note if it and includes support for the same <INVIS> tag into Internet Explorer. All is peachy until someone uses Safari or Netscape to open a page hat has the <INVIS> tag and wham! no invisible image there! How come? Because it's not standard code. Of course, there's no <INVIS> tag, I just made it up to illustrate the point that FrontPage uses non-standard code.

Yes, it would be easier and cleaner to use Notepad and crank your own code as Haydn suggested, but as you pointed, you know very little about HTML and you'd have to spend months in order to learn it; that was the point of my comment to Haydn, not to put you down but to highlight the unfeasability of his suggestion.

I understand you don't want to purchase Dreamweaver; that's your right. However, short of buying a couple of books and spending months learning to hand code in HTML; Dreamweaver is the best solution. Really. And no, we don't get paid comission for reccomending it; gosh, I wish!

Regarding your analogy of the Emergency Room, how about this? You're a soldier who is using a crappy gun (FrontPage) and as a result you shoot yourself in the toe (your website.) You end up in the Emergency Room (Experts Exchange) and sure, you get your toe patched, but nobody says a chirp about what caused the accident, so you go back to the front with the same crappy gun. How long before you're back in the Emergency Room?

Good Vibes!

Lobo
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Expert Comment

by:HaydnH
ID: 10702099
Strangely, with this problem that FP has created re: the frameset not working, Mozilla (& Netscape) displayed the page fine - it was only IE that didn't.... very strange that FP can create code that non IE browsers can read but IE can't.

"short of buying a couple of books and spending months learning to hand code in HTML"

Considering that the web site has already been designed I really don't think it would be too difficult to update/maintain it using a text editor. Anything that AEII has problems with can be answered in a few minutes on experts-exchange. Besides - we're not talking assembly here - HTML/CSS is really not that complex.

Haydn.
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Expert Comment

by:weed
ID: 10705232
*I* don't even edit HTML by hand. I might tweak a few tags here and there, but there's no way i'd start creating tables etc with a text editor. Some people can do that, most of us cant. Some of us want to spend the time doing other things.

I noticed that Safari displayed the page as well. Highly amusing that it butchers code to a point where IE cant display it. That's MS for ya.
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Expert Comment

by:Lobo042399
ID: 10707914
>>very strange that FP can create code that non IE browsers can read but IE can't.

Talk about a really bad HTML editor, eh?

As Weed, I very rarely spend time editing HTML in a text editor. Not that I can't, but why bother trying to reinvent the wheel? When I started having fun with HTML all that was available out there was Notepad and a long-gone dinosaur called HotMetal that ran in Win95. I could probably go and build a site in Notepad alone, but if I do it it'd be more of an exercise in ingenuity than anything else.

>>Considering that the web site has already been designed I really don't think ...

Considering that a car has already been designed and built by highly trained people, etc etc... Does it mean anyone can just go under the hood and replace a worn-out cylinder jacket?

Good Vibes!

Lobo
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Expert Comment

by:HaydnH
ID: 10711468
"all that was available out there was Notepad and a long-gone dinosaur called HotMetal"

Oooh, I remember HotMetal, there was a unix version aswell btw. I constantly had to go through remiving junk from pages people had edited in that =/



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Expert Comment

by:Lobo042399
ID: 10711759
Yes, and it was a pain in the neck to use so after playing with it for about an hour I dropped it. The first time I used a (so-called) WYSIWYG editor was Netscape Composer, which didn't do a bad job and was actually better than  other editors when it came out... and it was a freebie!  I still had to set-up my frameset HTML in Notepad but it saved me plenty of time, and it was easier to go in and delete the garbage ID code that it added to a page than typing the whole page in Notepad.

Good Vibes!

Lobo
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