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Beginner's Guide

1. What is FTP?
2. What does "Unlimited FTP Site Updates" mean?
3. What is the first step in setting up a website?
4. How do I gain FTP access to my site?
5. How do I "upload" and "download" files using CuteFTP?
6. Where do I put the index.html file?
7. What does "updating the site" mean?
8. What is HTML, and what is an HTML editor?
9. How do I set up email accounts with my domain?
10. What about Email Autoresponders?
11. How do I set up an Email Autoresponder?
12. What is an email redirect account?
13. How do I set up email redirect accounts?
14. How can I track who is requesting email from my Autoresponders?
15. What is a MailBot or ListServ?
16. How do I set up a MailBot?
17. How do I get a domain name?
18. Will you do the domain name registration for me?
19. What about reselling?
20. Do you allow "adult" sites?
21. How do I get access to traffic statistics for my site?
22. Does dotxtra.net really offer unlimited hits?
23. What is dotxtra.net's policy on "spam," or unsolicited email?
24. What about Microsoft Frontpage 98?
25. Hey I just checked out my new site - and the counter does not work!!
26. Do you have an 'uptime' guarantee?
27. Can you help me with my HTML, webpage, CGI programming, etc?
28. How do I change my domain over to dotxtra.net from my old hosting company?
29. Can I change a password to my email account, FTP account, or main account?
30. Where are you located?
31. Do you offer tech assistance by telephone?
32. I don't want to learn HTML or design a web site - can you design it for me?
33. I can't get my CGI script to work. HELP!!

1. What is FTP?
FTP is File Transfer Protocol, an internet protocol used to transfer materials over the Internet. It is very fast, very efficient, and very reliable.

 
 
2. What does "Unlimited FTP Site Updates" mean?
This means that you have access to your site via FTP over the Internet 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can "upload" files to your site - in other words, transfer files from your computer to the dotxtra.net webserver on the Internet - and you can also "download" files from your site - in other words, transfer files from your site on the dotxtra.net webserver, to your computer.
 
 
3. What is the first step in setting up a website?
The first step is to gain FTP access to your site, and upload the initial file to the proper directory. This initial file is generally named index.html, and it is the web page that will be returned when you call up www.yourdomain.com
 
 
4. How do I gain FTP access to my site?
First, get the best FTP program on the Internet, which in our humble opinion is CuteFTP. You can download it at: http://www.cuteftp.com/
After it's installed, run the program (double click on the yellow icon), and then click Add Folder - this is where you will store your FTP site info. Then click Add Site. In the panel that comes up, enter a name - call it anything you want - ftp.yourdomain.com. Then in Host Address, put: ftp.yourdomain.com. (Obviously if the extension is NOT .com - if it's .nu or .edu or whatever, you would use the appropriate extension) In User ID, put your User ID - this is usually the same as the domain name - and then in Password, carefully type your password - I say carefully because it will be masked, so you won't be able to read it - this password is CASE SENSITIVE!

Now click OK in the lower left of the panel, and you will see your domainname in the right hand panel - highlight it and click Connect - lower right part of panel. If all goes well, the program will establish an FTP connection with your site and take you to the htdocs/userid directory. This is the right place to put your index.html file.
 
 
5. How do I "upload" and "download" files using CuteFTP?
CuteFTP is VERY easy to use, and has a very intuitive, easy to use interface. The lower left panel is YOUR COMPUTER - the lower right panel is THE REMOTE SITE - in this instance, your dotxtra.net ftp site. Everything is drop and drag - to upload, drag the appropriate file from the left panel to the right panel. To download a file on the remote server, simply reverse the process - drag the file on the remote server - lower right hand panel - over to the lower left panel. Easy!
 
 
 
6. Where do I put the index.html file?
When CuteFTP opens the site ftp.yourdomain.com, it initally goes to the correct directory - usr/www/htdocs/userid This is the place to put index.html/ Make sure you do NOT put the file into one of the folders you see there - put it UNDER those folders. Also put all your pictures and other files for you site in this same directory.
 
 
 
7. What does "updating the site" mean?
Basically what a webmaster does is download files from a website, operate on them and/or change them with an HTML editor such as Arachnophilia, and the upload the changed file back to the site.
 
 
 
8. What is HTML, and what is an HTML editor?
HTML is HyperText Markup Language - it is essentially a kind of typesetting language, and is used to create images on the web. Our recommended editor - for creating and manipulating these images - is Arachnophilia. It is freeware and can be downloaded at: www.arachnoid.com Read the Help file, practice a while, and you'll pick it up in no time.
 
 
 
9. How do I set up email accounts with my domain?
One account is automatically set up when the domain is set up - [email protected] However, you are entitled to additional POP3 email boxes free of charge. Fill out our secure encrypted form for each new POP3 Email box you want.
 
 
 
10. What about Email Autoresponders?
Email autoresponders are very useful in Internet commerce. Essential, an autoresponder is a robot which resides on your site, and does one thing - when it receives an email - from anywhere - with its name on it - it sends its text back to the source of that email. Uses for these little robots are limited only by your imagination.
 
 
 
11. How do I set up an Email Autoresponder?
It's a bit tricky, but once you get the hang of it, it's easy. First of all create a text file using an HTML editor such as Arachnophilia - do NOT use Notepad or any other word processing program - it will not work! This text file is the text your Autoresponder will return to whoever emails to it. Let's say it's called text.doc. Now, using CuteFTP, upload the file text.doc to your HOME directory. Note, this is NOT the same place you put your html documents. Once the file text.doc is on the remote server in your HOME directory, you must RENAME it so that it does not have an extension. Do this in CuteFTP by going to COMMANDS, then RENAME - rename your text.doc file, simply text Once this is done, any email sent to: [email protected], will immediately receive an email back from [email protected], and the body of the email will contain the text file. Please note also: make sure you do NOT have an actual POP3 email box called [email protected] - this would create a problem. Autoresponders are unlimited! Use as many of them as you like.
 
 
 
12. What is an email redirect account?
These "aliases" are simply lines of code in your HOME directory which "bounce" emails from one email address to another. Let's say you have a webpage and you want people to email you, but you don't want your personal email address to appear on the page. Solution? Use a forwarding email account. Emails sent to [email protected] (the address shown on the webpage) will automatically be forwarded to [email protected]
 
 
 

13. How do I set up email redirect accounts?
This is similar to setting up Autoresponders, but with one extra twist. First, use an HTML editor (NOT a word processor!) to create a text file called redirect.txt (or redirect.doc) in this form:

jim [email protected]
george [email protected]
laura [email protected]
default [email protected]

Once properly renamed, this file will redirect any email sent to [email protected] to [email protected] Emails sent to [email protected] will be remailed to [email protected] - and so on. Any email that the system doesn't recognize (default) will go to [email protected]

Several caveats: when creating the above file, all aliases (jim, george, etc) should be FLUSH AGAINST THE LEFT MARGIN. The target email addresses ([email protected], etc) are a couple of tabs over. Also important: NO spaces after each target; no extra lines between aliases (i.e., make this file single spaced!); and no extra line UNDER the default line.

Now UPLOAD your redirect.txt file to the HOME directory - but be SURE to keep a copy of it EXACTLY as it appears in your HOME directory! (You'll see why in a moment) Now you must RENAME redirect.txt file - go to COMMANDS, then RENAME - and then rename the file: .redirect Yes, there's a leading period, and yes, no extension to the file. That's all there is to it. Oh, one more thing. Since the file has a leading period, it is now INVISIBLE to FTP! That's why you kept a copy! To update the file, simply modify the copy you kept, upload it, and rename it again, as above. Simple, nyet?

Use as many of these as you wish - no extra charge! Uses are endless. Many colleges now provide one of these ("[email protected]") for every one of their alumni - companies assign them to their favorite clients - and on and on.

 
 
 

14. How can I track who is requesting email from my Autoresponders?
You will often want to know who is requesting information from your various Autoresponders. Tracking is easy. Simply add an additional line to your Redirect file. Let's say you have an autoresponder called info, that sends information on your products. Add the following line to your redirect file:

info [email protected]

Now, the autoresponder will send the info to whoever requests it, AND the redirect line will send YOU a copy of the requesting email - so you'll know who's interested in the product. Great for building a mailing list of interested prospects!

 
 
 
15. What is a MailBot or ListServ?
A MailBot is a robot which resides on your site, and which redirects a single email sent to it, to a list of email recipients. There are companies out there specializing in setting these up - many of them charge plenty for it too! With your dotxtra.net Web Domain, however, you can set up as many as you like - free!
 
 
 

16. How do I set up a MailBot?
Basically, the MailBot is just a variation on the email redirect account, covered in (.13) above - all the same rules apply - it goes in the HOME directory, and you must rename it .redirect - it's thus a file that is invisible to FTP. Create it with an HTML Editor - NOT a word processor. It will look like this:

myclub [email protected] , [email protected] , [email protected] , [email protected] , [email protected] , [email protected]

NOTE: Now any email sent to: [email protected] will automatically bounce from your domain, back to all the folks on the list above. NOTICE: this is the drill: From the hard left margin: alias name tab tab email space comma space email space comma space etc If you alter the list, which you probably will, to add and subtract members, be sure to maintain the spaces and commas as shown here.

 
 
 

17. How do I get a domain name?
It's very easy - you just apply for one. If you want the USA 'com' 'org' or 'net' extension, go to this web address to check and see if the name you want is available: www.internic.net They will take your application online, and you can generally begin using the name within a few hours. Give them these name servers:

NS1.KAKAPO.BIZ 66.98.150.182

NS2.KAKAPO.BIZ 66.98.150.183

Internic will send you an invoice for $70 which covers the first two years. A less expensive choice is the nu domain. Check name availability at: www.nunames.nu You can reserve and pay for a year's domain registration ($25) right on line with a credit card.

 
 
 
18. Will you do the domain name registration for me?
Yes! We are Registrars! And we don't charge for this service - it's FREE with the purchase of one of our packages (Click for Details). We do ask that you check the availability first and we can only register .com, .net, or .org domain names. For other dot extensions, visit http://www.networksolutions.com or attempt a web search for "domain registration" and the dot extension you are attempting to register.
 
 
 
19. What about reselling?
You may resell space in your domain. Of course there are several ways to approach it. One is simply to sell directories in your space - www.yourdomain.com/client1 and then www.yourdomain.com/client2 and so on. But - if you want to make some SERIOUS money, check out our turn-key webhosting business opportunity - it's brand new and it is INCREDIBLE! Details? Send a blank email NOW to: [email protected]
 
 
 
20. Do you allow "adult" sites?
Yes, but because of legal and traffic considerations, there are a number of special rules we impose on adult sites. First, we charge $49/month for sites containing adult content, payable one year in advance (US$588). Second, traffic is limited to 5 Gigabytes of transfer per month. Gigabytes over this limit will be billed at $12/Gigabyte. We reserve the right to ask for a deposit for traffic overage in advance if your site is high volume. Third, all content must be strictly legal in all jurisdictions; we reserve the right to shut down any site with no refund for any violation of this rule. We do not offer refunds on adult sites. We use a special signup form for Adult Sites - find it here.
 
 
 
21. How do I get access to traffic statistics for my site?
Very easily - go to this URL: http://www.yourdomain.com/logs You'll find detailed reports in various formats on your traffic, including where hits are coming from, at what hours of the day, month, etc. Also you'll be able to tell which files are being requested. Essential for fine tuning your web marketing strategy!
 
 
 
22. Does dotxtra.net really offer unlimited hits?
For the vast majority of domains, traffic never becomes an issue and yes, within reason, you should never worry about the number of hits your site receives, but as a practical matter, no provider can provide you with unlimited resources for a fixed price. Bandwidth costs money, and unlimited amounts of it are not available to anyone. Therefore, we set a limit of 5 gigabytes of transfer per month on your domain - anything over this we bill at $12/gigabyte. We reserve the right to shut down any site without notice that is in arrears on payments for overage on traffic.
 
 
 
23. What is dotxtra.net's policy on "spam," or unsolicited email?
The sending of unsolicited commercial email, or "spam," is strictly prohibited. We have a "zero tolerance" policy on spam, and reserve the right immediately to terminate without warning any domain, without refund, that sends out unsolicited commercial email, in any amount.
 
 
 
24. What about Microsoft Frontpage 98?
dotxtra.net's servers fully support the Microsoft Frontpage HTML Editor and Publisher. However, there are two ways to approach using Frontpage 98. If you want to PUBLISH your web pages to your dotxtra.net domain using Frontpage, we structure your domain as a Frontpage domain. This has some downsides - for example, Frontpage basically takes over the domain - it disables FTP, and it disables Telnet access as well. In other words, once you convert your site to full Frontpage - both Editor and Publisher - ONLY Frontpage can be used to access your domain. Many of our clients prefer to use the Frontpage Editor only, and then use an FTP client such as CuteFTP to upload webpages - this is in our opinion the 'best of both worlds.'
 
 
 
25. Hey I just checked out my new site - and the counter does not work!!
Most everything will work on the site immediately; the counter and a couple of other functions, however, are set to begin working when your 'alpha' name begins answering - if your site is brand new, this will take 24 to 48 hours.
 
 
 
26. Do you have an 'uptime' guarantee?
Yes. We guarantee that your site will be up a minimum of 99.9% of the time. If we fail in any given month, you receive one full free month of hosting service.
 
 
 
27. Can you help me with my HTML, webpage, CGI programming, etc?
Time permitting we give advice via email on these issues but remember, we are providers of webspace and can help you with 'content' only as time permits.
 
 
 
28. How do I change my domain over to dotxtra.net from my old hosting company?
First: go to www.networksolutions.com and enter your domain name in the WHOIS system - check to see if you are the Administrative Contact - if you are, you can change over to our servers right online if you originally registered with Network Solutions. Change to our DNS servers, which are: ns1.kakapo.biz 66.98.150.182 ns2.kakapo.biz 66.98.150.183 If you are NOT the Administrative Contact you must get in touch with the old hosting company and get them to do the change. If you did not register with Network Solutions, you must go to whichever site/company that initially registered your domain.
 
 
 
29. Can I change a password to my email account, FTP account, or main account?
Yes, you can do this yourself easily. Be aware, however, if you change your password, we will not be able to go in and fix some problem on your site without your telling us the new password - OR - we may have to go in and change your password ourselves. To change your password, open a telnet client such as CRT and go to: yourdomain.com You will log in as a user, say: someuser and you will have to give your password. Once you're in, type this command: passwd someuser then just follow the prompts to change the password.
 
30. Where are you located?
dotxtra.net is a wholly owned subsidiary of MediaCraft, Inc., located at 15814 Champion Forest Drive #310, Spring, Texas 77379. We have been in business for 9 years. We maintain our servers at a secure facility professionally monitored 24/7. dotxtra.net branch office is located in Austin, TX.
 
31. Do you offer tech assistance by telephone?
Sorry, we do not provide technical/sales assistance by phone at the moment. We are keeping our running cost very low to provide best price of our services. Hence, we are not able to provide phone support at this time.
 
32. I don't want to learn HTML or design a web site - can you design it for me?
Yes! We offer highly competitive design services through a network of talented professionals. Email us at [email protected] for more details.

 

33. I can't get my CGI script to work. HELP!!
Here are some tips on CGI:

*Scripts must be made executable with chmod 755 filename

*Any script must end in .cgi to ensure execution.

*Scripts that dont respond with Content Type tag as firsLIne, must be named nph-Scriptname.cgi . The nph- stands for non-parsed-headers.

*Perl 5 is located at /usr/bin/perl perl 4 is at /usr/bin/perl4.036 , make sure the first line has this right.

*Perl scripts will REFUSE to run if uploaded in binary from a non-unix computer. Make sure you upload scripts in ascii mode only!!!

Perl 4 scripts usually will need to have any @ or $ escaped with \ character to be perl 5 compatible. ie print "webmaster\@yourdomain.com"

The directory cgi-bin is reserved for our shared cgi directory. Your cgi(s) are called from your cgi-bin with an alias. This is the only way the server can distinguish between the main cgi-bin and the cgi-bin in your /www/htdocs directory.

Example Alias

Let's say your domain is joe.com.

Use FTP to go to: ftp.joe.com

You'll find a folder there in your main directory called cgi-bin

That is the cgi-bin for joe.com

Now let's say you upload a script to that cgi-bin, called script.cgi

The ALIAS address of that script is now: http://www.joe.com/cgi-joe/script.cgi

NOTE WELL: The address is NOT: http://www.joe.com/cgi-bin/script.cgi

In setting up your script, you will need the PATH - the path of the above example is: /www/htdocs/joe/cgi-bin

Yes this is confusing but you must get it right for the script to work!

index.cgi is valid, as a directories home page for a cgi script. Like wise you could replace index.htm with index.shtml to use PARSE(Server Side includes).

Server Side Includes only work in files with .shtml extension. The execute bit and read public bits must be on to use .shtml.


.shtml files need to have their permission changed to 755 -- chmod 755 filename.cgi

Cool server variables

If you can't figure out why it doesn't work , run it from the command LIne, or rename it to nph-Scriptname. You'll see more error messages.

CGI is programming, don't be mistaken into thinking it is as easy as HTML. It isn't. We have a list of consultants well versed in CGI and would be glad to work for you on a consulting basis.

If you are going to use perl, buy a Perl book. If you can't figure it out, ask us and we will help you by email on a time permits basis.

There are many documented examples in /www/htdocs/cgi-scripts

If You Are Unable to do your own cgi scripting and setup You can try

CGIMALL http://cgimall.com This is a great place to shop for free scripts that they will install for you very reasonably.

Other Sources For Learning Cgi Are:

http://www.visca.com/clueless/

http://ednet.gsfc.nasa.gov/Mathews/cgi/start.html

http://members.aol.com/LiVeShOtNj/graphics/cgihelp.htm

http://www.metronet.com/perlinfo/scripts

http://www.metronet.com/perlinfo/other-archives.html

http://www.metronet.com/1h/perlinfo/other-archives

news:comp.lang.perl.misc

news:comp.lang.perl.announce

Introduction to Perl

Kira's CGI Cookbook