5. Site Management

As you develop your site you will need to maintain the pages that are already on the web and to publish new ones. Your site can quickly become outdated if old items are not replaced regularly.

Another common problem for web sites is broken links. These can occur because:
  • the linked site moves to a new server
  • the page is moved in the linked site
  • the site shuts down altogether
To avoid this problem you should regularly check your internal and external site links. There are online services which can check for broken links on your site. Examples of such services can be found at:

http://www.webmasters-resources.com/HTML/Link_Checkers/

A well maintained links collection will attract your visitors back to your site regularly.

To aid future site maintenance, you need to organise your files into folders and directories from the outset. There are several key points to remember:
  • Keep backups of new and old files on your local drive
  • Give files sensible names
  • Use server side includes (SSIs) for navigation and common page features
  • Use folder hierarchies - don't put all your files in a single top-level directory

Organize Your Folders and Directories

To help you maintain your website, your directory structure should be appropriately organised. This will aid site maintenance as the site grows. Files having similar types of information are best collected together into a single directory. Your site structure will encompass a series of directories with different categories. Its a good idea to separate different types of files into their own directories too. Images, for instance, should be given their own top-level directory with other specific image directories within it. Directory access can also be restricted to certain specified domains or people can be given usernames and passwords to enter the site. See the Frequently Asked Questions section for further details.

To help you maintain your site:
  • Give your files meaningful names
  • Create one index.html file for each directory
  • Use restricted access directories where necessary
  • Remove obsolete files and images off the webserver

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