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The following documents are geared towards using VirtuFlex with Microsoft FrontPage.

Five Steps to Integrating FrontPage97 and VirtuFlex
"Combining the Ease of FrontPage97 with the Power of VirtuFlex"
October 31, 1997
W. Curtiss Priest, Ph.D

Want Dynamic web pages? Try this. Combine the ease of FrontPage with the power of VirtuFlex -- a great new "web middleware" tool that lets any web browser access database information -- and change the data, too.

To experience VirtuFlex, visit www.virtuflex.com.   Try the teleconferencing demo and then click to see the code that generated the page -- one line. That's all.

VirtuFlex isn't for everyone. While FrontPage has menu items that let you automatically embed standard HTML elements like FORMs, VirtuFlex involves writing a "macro." But think of VirtuFlex like writing Basic in Visual Basic. Let FrontPage do the work of setting up the page, and then you "insert" VirtuFlex "code" to do the rest.

VirtuFlex requires NT, but compared to Windows95, NT workstation is extremely stable and sells for less than $100.

Since the two products were not designed specifically to work together here are a few tips to get going.

To be sure the embedded HTML in an interlace remains as you typed it, you should use the "Insert HTML" in FrontPage.

Without this, FrontPage tries to make sense of VirtuFlex interlace HTML and this is usually not correct. When you close and reopen the file, you find that FrontPage has mangled the VirtuFlex code.

Or -- you can simply insert the following "comment directives" for FrontPage to ignore a body of HTML using "View HTML" (which lets you edit the HTML directly) --

This looks like:

<!--webbot bot="HTMLMarkup" startspan -->

[[SET:DefaultDbase:c\:\ntimed\tddemo.mdb]] <p>[[DBASE:SELECT:[Member Table]:LastName like 'Cahn':<p>Last name is {LastName}</p>]]

<!--webbot bot="HTMLMarkup" endspan -->

[without these comment directives, FrontPage tries to make sense of the <p>'s, and adds and deletes them until it thinks it is correct.]

So to summarize:

1. Use .HTM extensions for VirtuFlex templates so FrontPage both:

a. Reads them for link information
b. Invokes the FrontPage editor (instead of notepad)

2. VirtuFlex templates -- like other HTML files for FrontPage must reside in the "project" directory. This directory, in my case "TD" -- is located at c:\inetpub\wwwroot\td If a file is NOT in this project directory -- its Icon changes from that of a "page" to that of a "small world" -- indicating that it is a reference to page that is OUTSIDE and not editable.

3. Give FrontPage link information by hiding an href in each page that mirrors what template your FORM calls.

This looks like:

    <a href="http://linct1.org/organiza.htm></a>

where organiza.htm is the VirtuFlex template being called in this page (since there is no text labeling this, it is invisible to the user's browser.)

This hidden link lets you navigate in FrontPage Explorer

4. When VirtuFlex code includes HTML markup elements -- surround the code with these either by using "Insert HTML" or by pasting these around code using the HTML editor -- "View HTML":
<!--webbot bot="HTMLMarkup" startspan -->

VirtuFlex code goes here

<!--webbot bot="HTMLMarkup" endspan -->

The result is a very high turnaround environment. You can quickly get to a sub-page, edit it, test it, and iterate. The "diagram" map of FrontPage Explorer shows all the linkages and lets you see what relates to what, and helps you quickly navigate.

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Last updated: Thursday November 16, 2006 18:22 -0500