Help! - Website with database

  sueh 10:25 09 Feb 04
Locked

I have been asked to design a website with a database of members attached. Can anyone direct me to some advice as to how to go about this in FrontPage - preferably a step-by-step guide for plonkers?

  Taran 12:08 09 Feb 04

Data driven sites often brings people crashing back to earth at an alarming rate. Desiging and implementing your database is more important than writing the site itself. A bad database design will be unwieldly and make it difficult if not impossible to effectively pull information out and get information into it.

Now, before I go off on one with a long-winded explanation of the ins and outs, it would help to know a couple of things first:

1. Which version of FrontPage are you using ?

2. Since you will need some dynamic content which is likely to involve an Access database and ASP pages or at the very least a CSV file, what exactly does the web host support that the site will be published to ?

3. Do you have any experience at all in database design ?

4. When you say a membership system, is this to have log-in forms and parts of the site for members only or is it merely to keep track of a club member list or similar ?

The good news is that there are several free to use membership systems available that you could port to your project but without knowing what it is you actually want to do and what sort of information you want to process it's impossible to give an off the peg solution. Do you want a forum area, a chat system, log-in and log-out, member only areas of the site and so on or...

As much detail as you can supply would help one of us to point you in the right direction.

  sueh 15:10 09 Feb 04

Hi Taran:
Here I come ... crashing to earth! Answers are as follows:

1: FrontPage 2002

2: Host fully supports all default components for ASP. A full list is at click here and they we support all ADO commands

3: I'm reasonably experienced with Access design but not much SQL experience. Can design queries okay in Access.

4: I think they just want a kind of directory of members so visitors can search by area or by discipline. No private area for members. No registration on line. (Well don't think so anyway).

Thanks a lot for your help ....

  Taran 21:22 09 Feb 04

"a kind of directory of members so visitors can search by area or by discipline".

Care to elaborate on that a bit for me ?

Are we talking names, full addresses, tel/fax/mobile numbers, email addresses and so on and is a search by area going to be on a county or postcode basis [or similar].

I'm assuming that the search by discipline would be along the lines of lookng for all memebers who do Kung Fu out of a list of possible martial arts, or all who do traditional longbow archery out of the possible archery types ?

When I said more detail required, I meant it. A lot more detail would really help.

  sueh 11:02 11 Feb 04

Hi Taran:

Thanks again for your time - and sorry I wasn't more precise.

"a kind of directory of members so visitors can search by area or by discipline".

To elaborate a bit more. The client is a group of professionals in the complementary medicine field - hypnotherapists, aromatherapists and so on. The idea is that Joe Public will select, say, Reiki Practitioner and get a list of those + also showing the town - like Tom Smith - Newcastle, Jane Doe - North Shields. Towns will be county-wide rather than nationwide. From this list they select a practitioner + get email and phone details + maybe a short resume of what they do. The client has not yet been clear as to whether address fields will also be shown on this summary page - but sod's law dictates that it will. So, in essence, a class contact database.

Thanks again for your time. Is this enough detail?

  sueh 11:04 11 Feb 04

Last sentence, penultimate para should read "a classic contact database" !

  Taran 13:39 11 Feb 04

I knew a Tony Smith from Newcastle once, but never a Tom Smith. Go down Westgate hill, hurry past Pink Lane [like you do] and turn left at, well, never mind...

To save me loads of typing, try this:

Go to Google click here and use this as your search query, including the quote marks:

"frontpage"+contacts database

You get more returns than you could shake a stick at and some of them are excellent walk-throughs of exactly what you are after.

click here - this one deal with adding a contact database to your FrontPgae web as a subweb. If you don't want to have it running as a subweb, you don't need to. The tutorial has screenshots of every step taken and is dead easy to follow.

click here is an introduction to FrontPage database features and click here is specifically about FrontPage 2002 for online business database projects.

click here this one deals with a simple contact management database using FrontPage.

I suggest you try all of them, follow all steps listed in all of them and try a few dry runs. Then you can lift out the features and methods you want to incorporate into your own project to get the exact fit you are after.

T

  sueh 13:59 11 Feb 04

Right, I'm standing in Pink Lane and the instructions ran out .....

Seriously, thank you so much for all your help. I'll certainly (a) click all the links and (b) do a dry run.

And if I'm ever in Pink Lane ...

Thanks again - you're a star. Taran tara !

Sue

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