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How To Inspect Your WWW Folder

From the Radio Menu at the top of any of your local weblog pages, choose "Folder". This will load a page that looks something like this:

This displays the contents of your local www folder as well as links to some of the files on your public website.

Do you notice the 'Edit This Page' button?

This seems a bit odd because you wouldn't actually want to edit this page yourself, nor does Userland let us do so. It is retained (I suspect) to make it easer for Userland developers to manage the overall user interface structure. You can click on it if you want. It will display (open) the actual www folder on your desktop.

Understanding the Structure

There are six columns of interest on the folder page.

Leftmost Column Links

Links to the items are on the far left. These behave somewhat unpredictably. The little page-like buttons  want to open an editable window for the selected file (say, #prefs.txt)  but display an empty text entry area on my system. I wouldn't enter anything in there if I were you! (The .xml files are displayed correctly in your browser but are not editable).

The folder icons  open a detailed view of the selected folder displaying its subfolders or files for further inspection. They also open the actual folder on your Windows desktop.

I don't find myself using these links very often but your mileage may vary.

Title Links

These behave predictably.

Click on a title link to inspect the selected file in your browser or to open up a detail page that lists the files in a subfolder of a folder. This opens the Gems subfolder within the www folder when I clicked on the gems item link in the screen capture above.

Once the subfolder is open, you can inspect a file in your browser by selecting it with your mouse.

IMPORTANT: title links open the folders or files in your local www folder on your own machine.

Date

This indicates the last time a folder or file was modified.

Size

The size in kilobytes of the file or the number of items in the folder.

Hits

This is the number of times a given file or folder was requested by you from your local (not your public) webserver. Remember, Radio contains a full-blown webserver working on your behalf behind the scenes.

Link

When the link button  is displayed, you can click on it to load the folder or flie contents into your browser.

If you click on a file, various things may happen depending on the file type.

For instance, clicking on the link for index.txt will return you to your local desktop home page itself.

Clicking on the rss.xml link will display the rss formatted file created for your most recent weblog entries.

Clicking on a graphical file will display the graphic in your web browsre. You can then copy-and-paste them conveniently from Internet Explorer to your weblog if you choose.

If you click-selected a folder, you will see something like this (I clicked here on the gems link again):

Clicking on mySubscriptions.opml will display that file in your browser.

Clicking on the Parent Directory link will return you to the main www folder display.

The reason why the #prefs.txt file is displayed when you click on the gems text link (column two of the www folder page display) but not when you click on the globe (column six) is because #prefs.txt is not upstreamed to your public website location. #prefs.txt is only stored locally.

IMPORTANT: The globe icon link button  only displays folder or file contents that have been upstreamed to your public website. When you link from your weblog to another file in your WWW folder, make sure you are linking to a file that has been upstreamed publicly.

Worth The Trouble?

Given some of the subtleties and unusual behaviors I have described, you may be thinking, "best I don't fool with this page at all lest I crash my weblog or Radio."

No! Don't take that away from this. Simply follow these two simple tips:

1. Until you are more comfortable with Radio, use this page purely for inspection of folders and files. This view gives you a great idea of what your www folder contains and hints at the way that Radio itself was designed. This will stand you in good stead as your expertise increases.

2. Use this folder page as a great way to locate and then copy-paste graphics to your own weblog.

 



© Copyright 2002 Russ Lipton. Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.
Last update: 06/09/2002; 3:52:23 PM.