How EXACTLY to make a website

The first thing you will need is an HTML editor; unless you want to learn HTML code, which is a very difficult task! It's outdated, but FrontPage Express that came out between 95'-97', is very easy to use; plus it's free.

  1. Download and install it.
  2. Next, you will want to create a folder on your hard drive that will be used to store your website. It would be the easiest to just put it on your desktop. It doesn't matter what you decide to call it. I'll call it "Website", to keep it clear.
  3. A website's very beginning will always be an index file. For example; When someone goes to, what the web browser is really doing is going to The index.html file is almost always the homepage. So make a page and save it in your Website folder as "index.html". It would be better to save it under that name before you even get started, even if it means saving it as a blank page first. This way, when you add a picture to it, FrontPage knows WHERE on your hard drive the page is compared to where the image is. This is very important. So just save a blank page as "index.html" and then re-open that page in a new window. You click "File", then "Save as". The following screen appears.

Click "As File"

Type in "index.html", even though under that it says it will be saved as "HTML File (*.htm,".html)", you should still specify weather it is to be an .htm or .html extension. Most people use html and not the htm file extension (Also, I would use all lowercase letters.)

  1. Images: Lets say you have an image you want to put on this page. Go inside your work folder that you made to store your website in and create a folder. It doesn't matter what the name is but keep in mind when you are done and you upload your site to the net, that folder name will be displayed in people's browser as a directory name. For sake of simple communication, lets call it "images". Any pictures you want on your site will first have to be placed in this folder. Go back to FrontPage Express where you are working on the index.html file and place the curser where you want the image to be. Next, click "Insert" at the top of the screen and then select "Image". A window will pop up:

Make sure "From File" is selected, Click on "Browse". A window will come up and then you need to navigate to your "images" folder and select the image you want inserted.

Your selected image should now appear on your page.

Keep in mind, when first inserted, an image will be displayed at what ever resolution it really is. What I always do is after inserting an image, I will left click on it and then there will appear black dots on each side of the image and on all four corners. Don't mess with the ones on the sides as doing so will distort the image proportions. Instead, click on one of the corners and you will find that you can adjust the image size by doing this. Then after you have adjusted the image to the desired size, it will look its best if you go into your images folder and use some kind of image software to adjust the resolution of the actual image file to match the displayed image size on your page. Spinwave is considered to do this pretty well. They sell a GIF cruncher and a JPG cruncher. The JPG cruncher will work on any image, it just won't maintain the animation of a GIF image when saving. It can still be used on non-animated GIF images though. Another program that is free and works almost as well is Irfanview. It won't downsize animated GIF images at all though but is free and does work almost as well as Spinwave in terms of image quality.

You can find the displayed image size by right-clicking on the image, then selecting "image properties", then clicking "appearance".

In the above example, it is being displayed at 417 pixels wide and 357 high. What ever the width and height is, that's what you need to adjust the image file itself to be. Doing so will increase the image quality on your webpage, and if you were working with a very large resolution image that you were planning on displaying as a wallet sized photo, then the file size of that image will probably be dramatically reduced, resulting in a very noticeable increase in download speed for visitors to your website who are still stuck with dial-up internet service. Tip: Most image processing software will save image files with either all capitalized file extensions or all lowercase file extensions. They seem to just pick which one at random too. To force it to save in either one, you must actually type it in. Example: imagename.jpg or imagename.JPG (Save it using what the original file was as the file path is case sensitive)
Example: The command, <img src="images/Stars.gif", will not find the image it's looking for if the image has been renamed to Stars.GIF

Setting a background image: Select "File", "Page Properties", then "Background".

then check "Browse Image", then click the "Browse" button and select the image, then "OK". The background on your page should now change to the selected image.

  1. Links: To insert a link pointing to one of YOUR other pages (That you perhaps haven't even made yet), you first type the text that you want hyperlinked, then highlight that text with your mouse, then select "insert", then "HyperLink" (Or you could use the shortcut: Ctrl+K)

In this scenario, I am pointing to the page "2ndFileName.html", which I haven't even made yet. There's two ways to do this. You can make all the pages, then put them together later as then you would know all the file names, or you could do it step by step and make up a file name before you have even made the page for it yet; thats the easier way. Keep in mind, it is case sensitive. 2ndfilename.html isn't the same, nor is 2ndFileName.HTML. Every character should match exactly. Note: In this example, I am assuming you are going to save all your webpages you make in your Website folder and not any of them in any subfolders. To keep it simple, I would recommend storing any pictures to be used on the website in the subfolder, "images", as talked about previously, and any of the html pages I make I would store directly in the "Website" folder.

The "Target Frame" box should be left empty if you're linking to one of your own pages. Many people will type the word "blank" or "_blank" in it to force the viewer's browser to open up a second window. This is usually used only on hyperlinks that are directed at someone else's page. But some people like for a new window to open up no matter what. And some people prefer to use a single window throughout their entire site, even when clicking on links to other sites. So leaving it empty will make the viewer's browser open that hyperlink in the same window and putting in the word "blank" or "_blank" will cause another browser page to be opened when someone clicks the link.

Note: When making a link pointing to ANOTHER website, you need to put the entire path in and not just the filename.html. Example: If I wanted to put a hyperlink to the search engine,, I would put this in:

It's also possible to set the Target Frame so that, automatically, ALL the links on that page will open in a different window. Click "File", then "Page Properties". And enter either "blank" or "_blank" (Without the quotation marks) into the space marked "Default Target Frame". The difference between the two commands are that with 'blank", you click another page's link and a window opens up. But when you click on another foreign link, it loads in that same window. With "_blank", every single foreign link you click on will open up a different window.

  1. Tables: I like using tables to put an image in and then at the botom of the image I can insert a description of that image and the words will stay within the image width. Click on "Table", then "Insert Table"

Set the rows to "2" and columns to "1". Make the width really narrow, like 10%. The reason is, an image will "stretch" the table width to make the table the same width as the image. Then when the words are entered, they can go no farther on each side as the width of the table, which is now the exact width of the image. When done, the image can be inserted into the top row and the words into the bottom. I would keep the cell padding on "0" for this particular use. The cell padding is the distance kept between what's entered into the table and the inside of the border. Everything else regarding tables and cells is pretty self explanatory. (The cells, in this case, are the two "rows") You can always change the properties by right-clicking on the table and selecting either "Table Properties" or "Cell Properties".

When using tables for other uses, such as to put a paragraph in, many people make the mistake of selecting "Pixels" and then entering the width to be wider than the monitor resolution. Remember, people who view your site might have their computer's resolution set to something different than you do. That's why I usually just use the ""Percent" setting.

  1. Meta Tags: These are placed inside the HTML coding so that search engines can find your site more easily. I still don't know the whole story on them though. Some say the "Keyword Tag" is the most important and others say search engines like Google don't even look at that tag anymore and instead focus more on what's in the page's title. I would just run a search on it to find out more from someone who knows more than I do; but be warned, you will get a lot of contradicting information. Here's the meta tag for this page: You can see I left the keywords out though.

When I enter the meta tags, I will just right-click on the HTML document that I want to insert them into and then select "Open With", then "Notepad". Copy and paste the following text somewhere between the <head> and </head> lines as it is above. (Though the page title can also be entered by selecting "File" and then "Page Properties")

<meta name="keywords"
content="Enter the words most associated with this particular web-page here">
<meta name="description"
content="Enter a brief description of this particular web-page here">
<title>Enter the page title here</title>

To save it back into an HTML type of file and not as a text file you select "File", "Save As"

Click the down arrow by the "Save as type" box, select "All Files" and above that you enter the document name. You have to add the ".html" or else it will save it as a ".txt" file type.

This method of editing HTML documents comes in handy when you are working with scripts, as this particular HTML editor does not recognize most of them and so you have to add the scripts in after you get done making the page. (For those who don't know, scripts are mostly just fancy stuff for web-pages. They are not really needed to create a website. But they're fun afer you get the hang of it.) Click here to see some script code at work. (Only veiwable using Internet Explorer) Go to to see all the rest, some of which will work on Netscape but generally, most willl only be viewable using Internet Explorer. Here's one that works on IE5x/6x and NS6x/7x, and to a lesser degree on Opera7x and NS4x.


To be continued . . . .