MISSING IN iCLOUD
2. WEBSITE HOSTING
3. FILE STORAGE & SHARING
Apple's online service,
iCloud, is intended primarily as a method for
easily syncing data such as calendars, contacts, emails and pictures
between your Macs and your iOS devices. Though it was touted as a
partial replacement for the old MobileMe service, it is lacking a
number of facilities which were available there.
This article offer some advice on migrating those facilities which
iCloud won't provide.
Apple's iWeb, part of iLife, was originally designed
only to upload to
MobileMe in a seamless one-click operation. With its easy for methods
for creating basic websites with no technical knowledge it enabled
thousands of non-technical users to create and publish their personal
With the demise of MobileMe this hosting has ceased. Up to and
including iWeb '08, it was only possible to publish to other hosts by
'Publishing to a folder' and then uploading that local folder to a
website host using a separate FTP client. From
iWeb '09 an FTP method was built-in, making it easier to publish to a
host other than MobileMe.
In order to upload your existing site in iWeb '09 and
Click on the name of the site in the
sidebar: the publishing settings pane will open. Set 'Publish to' to
'FTP'. Enter the name of the site and a contact address (if desired).
In the 'FTP Server Settings' section you will need to know the server
address (your hosting service can tell you that), and your username and
password for that service. Your site will be published in a folder with
its name at root level of the server, with an index.html file at root
level (which will overwrite any index.html file which may be there
already). The 'Directory/Path' field may need to include a path such as
'/webspace/' or 'ht_docs/' - this is dependent on your hosting service
and they should tell you this. If you want to publish within a folder
you can add that to the path.
You can then click the 'Test connection' button so that iWeb can check
that it can get access to your server space. You should enter the URL
of the site in the 'URL' field so that rss feeds and internal links
have the correct address.
To publish using an earlier version of iWeb:
From the File menu choose 'Publish to a
folder'. You should create a folder somewhere convenient specifically
for this and choose it when publishing to a folder: this folder should
not contain anything else.
You now need an FTP program (FTP is the 'protocol' used for uploading)
to upload the contents
folder to your server. Cyberduck
is free (donation requested): Transmit
is $34 but I think better. You will need the server
address (your hosting service can tell you that), and your username and
password for that service. You can drag the contents of your folder to
your webspace, or create a folder there and drag the contents to that
if you prefer.
Some facilities that iWeb provided when
hosted on MobileMe will not
work on other servers: comments on weblogs and photos,
password-protecting your site (some hosts may provide this), searching
in the weblog, and a hits counter (again, some hosts can provide code
for this). Slideshows in iWeb will work on other hosts than MobileMe
(they use different code when FTPing which doesn't depend on scripts
hosted on MobileMe as the MobileMe version does); however there is an
issue with the 'buttons' which control the slideshow which are images
hosted on me.com - these depend on images which used to be hosted on
MobileMe. The poster 'Old Toad' on the Apple
Forums has provided a workaround, described at http://oldtoadstutorials.net/No.26.html
Although iWeb continues to work Apple have removed it from sale, which
is another point to consider before
committing to it.
If you have not yet started a website and are tempted to use iWeb, I
would advise against it; as it's no longer for sale and won't be
updated, there is always the possibility that a future system upgrade
may break it. The nearest programs to iWeb in facilities and general
ease of use are RapidWeaver
, which I think is preferable to iWeb
anyway, and EverWeb
which is designed to be similar to iWeb but with more facilities.
Websites made in other programs
It's always been possible to create websites in other programs such as
RapidWeaver, DreamWeaver, Flux and so on, and upload them to the Sites
or the Web/Sites folder. Uploading existing websites to another host is
quite simple, involving only changing the protocol to FTP from WebDAV
and entering the server address, username and password, and directory
path as detailed above. The main problem comes if you have internal
absolute links - i.e. those which give the server name - as opposed to
relative links, which simply show the path to another page on the same
server. Absolute links will need to be tracked down and changed. If
your site includes a podcast then all the links to the media files in
the feed must be absolute links and all these will need to be changed.
Weblogs are a special case of websites, and iWeb makes use of
facilities in MobileMe when creating a weblog: it's liable not to work
properly on other servers. Rage Software have created a program called iWeb to WordPress
which is designed to transfer
your weblog to the Wordpress hosting platform. It cost £32.95: I
haven't tried it. You can create weblogs in RapidWeaver and most other
website creation programs.
There is a huge choice available. You should be careful about 'free'
hosting sites: they will probably add adverts to your site and may have
uncomfortable restrictions. It's advisable to choose a firm based in
your country, or at least your continent, if you can, and preferable to
have one with telephone support. Choose a plan with more than enough
server space, and remember that, particularly if your site is popular,
bandwidth (the amount of data downloaded by visitors) is a significant
issue. Many plans specify a bandwidth limit: some offer unlimited
bandwidth but be careful - some of these exclude music and video files
which with a popular podcast could run you into limits quite quickly.
Read the small print. If you exceed your bandwidth limits in a
specified period you will be either charged extra or blocked.
If you are using a Mac it's advisable to choose a firm which can
support Mac users: in theory there shouldn't be a problem as web and
FTP access is universal, but if your firm doesn't understand Macs they
may decline to offer support for almost any problem, Mac-related or not.
There is an issue with podcasts that you need to be aware of when
hosting service. iOS devices handle podcast episodes by use of a method
'byte-range requests', meaning that they request part
the episode media file at a time, rather than the whole file. Many
servers can't handle this, and the problems that iPhone users were
experiencing with podcasts has led Apple to make the ability to handle
this a requirement when accepting new podcasts. Existing podcasts on
such servers haven't so far been rejected, but as iOS devices won't
work it's best when finding a new server to check this. Ask them
whether they can handle 'byte-range requests' - if they say 'no', or
don't know what it is, find another service. (This applies to the
episode media files, not the feed, so if you are using different
servers it's the one hosting the episodes which is the issue.)
The next page
will examine web
storage, which is a different issue from web hosting.