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FrontPage 2003 Vs. DreamWeaver MX

A question for people who have used both FrontPage 2003 and DreamWeaver MX. Which one do you think is the best bang for your money?

Web Designer
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Dreamweaver MX has a strange and quirky interface, but is a lot more powerful than FrontPage 2002.

I don't know about FrontPage 2003, tough.

MX
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

If you are comfortable with CSS and/or trying to design pages with less code/bload and/or bandwidth is a concern I'd go with DreamWeaver.

Nothing tops hand-coding for getting pages as slim or clean as possible, but DreamWeaver certainly makes a good effort at it.  And Macromedia has put in a lot of work with the WASP members to make their product produce standards compliant (or nearly) code with little effort.

The interface is also reassuringly comfortable if you've worked in Flash, Freehand, or any other Macromedia product.  It is not too foreign if you use Adobe products either.

Lou
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

I agree with Lou.

If you are going to use a tool to create your XHTML/HTML/CSS, DreamWeaverMX 2004 is as good as you'll get.

I'd be pretty scared of the markup a Microsoft product would generate. I'm not saying it won't validate as standard XHTML, but I wouldn't trust it to look the same in IE and the other browsers.

Michael Sica
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Perhaps more importantly it can be a bear to work through by hand if you need to insert something manually or want to import it into a CMS later.

Lou
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

TopStyle - it's written by the guy who wrote HomeSite, which I believe has (sadly) been scuttled by Macromedia.

http://www.bradsoft.com/topstyle/index.asp

Walter Rumsby
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

HomeSite is actually bundled with the Windows version of Dreamweaver.

Dreamweaver is a fairly solid product, but it does have one glaring omission as a site management tool: you cannot run a link check on external links, only internal ones. It amazes me that a so-called "state of the art" program does not provide this basic feature, which is essential for maintaining your site. You can verify external links with HomeSite, but I curse Macromedia everytime I have to quit Dreamweaver just to perform this basic function.

Brad
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

As has been discussed before: if you check your external links at a certain time and the page/site is not retrievable there's only one information in this - that the page/site was not retrievable at exactly that time. It does not tell you that the page/site will never again be retrievable.

Slashbot
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

I havent tried the latest version of FP either, but going on what I saw in the previous versions...

The big difference  is that Dreamweaver does not try to "own" the code it produces where as FP does. Dreamweaver is probably more geared towards users who (wants to) understand the code.

Eric DeBois
Thursday, December 04, 2003

"As has been discussed before: if you check your external links at a certain time and the page/site is not retrievable there's only one information in this - that the page/site was not retrievable at exactly that time."

Yeah, but an external link check at least confirms which links ARE working. Then you can double-check the list of those that aren't to find out what's wrong. In my eight years of experience working on Web sites, a large percentage of the "bad links" identified in an external link check really are bad and need to be replaced. The percentage of those that were unretrievable due to temporary server problems at the time of the link check is small, like in the 1-5 percent range.

Brad
Thursday, December 04, 2003

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