Web Development FAQ

How do I access my Website?

One of the most common questions we get is simply "How do I see my website?". In order to view your website, first you must determine the name of the accounts assigned to you by either your Instructor or the web Administrator. Please contact your Instructor for further information regarding this.

For simplicity's sake, we will use the example account for this demonstration. A12345678 is this account.

User A12345678 wishes to view their website that they finished uploading to their FTP account on the server. This user would then append a ~A12345678 (as this is the user's account name) to the address of the student webserver.

The full address would be as http://www.irscstudentweb.org/~A12345678

What is the public_html folder?

Another common question is the purpose of the public_html folder. This is the single most important folder to you as a Web Design Student. The public_html folder is your personal corner of the server that allows you to publish a website to the public. The first step in creating your website will be to deposit your files into this directory, so do not remove this directory.

What is an index file?

An index file is a very important part of your website. This file, be it php or htm(l), is the default item your browser looks for when navigating to a general address.

An example of this would be as follows:

When you typed the address http://www.irscstudentweb.org into your browser's address bar, the browser looked for an index file because you did not specify a direct path to the page you wished to visit. Without an index file, typing that same address would display a list of files rather than a webpage. Imagine that this website had no index file, but instead of just typing the address you typed http://www.irscstudentweb.org/faq.php, which is a direct link to this page itself. You would see the page normally.

In summation, the index file is the default page for the browser to bring up if a direct path is not specified.