Frontpage End of Life 6/1/2011

Starting on the 1st of May 2011 we will begin the process of discontinuing support for Microsoft FrontPage Extensions.

** On June 1, 2001, we will completely remove Frontpage from our servers.**

If you use Frontpage or other software requiring Frontpage extensions, this affects you directly.

What Happened?

In June 2006 the Microsoft FrontPage Server Extensions for UNIX were classified as “End-of-Life” by Microsoft. While we kept support for the extensions for the past 5 years, we have come to the point where we need to move on.

As technology improves, the continued support and installation of the Frontpage extensions limits us from adding new features and continuing to update some of the server side software because of compatibility issues with software (such as Apache 2). The developers of the control panel software that we use has also announced that FrontPage server extensions are no longer supported. Additionally, the possibility of encountering a security problem with the Frontpage extensions could leave our servers vulnerable to attack.

When will this happen?

Effective May 1, 2011 we will no longer support the use of Microsoft FrontPage on our servers. The server side extensions will remain on our servers until June 1, 2011 on a -use at your own- risk basis. On June 1, 2011, we will completely remove Frontpage extensions from our servers as we upgrade to Apache 2.

What are your options?

If you are currently utilizing Microsoft FrontPage to develop and publish your web site, you have several options…

** Continue to Use FrontPage **

You can continue to utilize FrontPage to develop and publish your web site. The lack of server extensions only limits some of the advanced features of the product. We suggest using the Find feature within FrontPage and search the source code of all you pages for “webbot” without the quotation marks. This will highlight each instance where the code relies on the server extensions. You can see a list of features that rely on extensions in this Microsoft Article. Publishing can be done with the built in FTP application within FrontPage.

** Switch to a Different Software **

Microsoft, Adobe and many other commercial companies offer newer versions of web site creation software for you to purchase. These products include the latest features and functionality to make updating your site easy.

Tips if you decide to continue using Frontpage

If you decide to continue to utilize the FrontPage program you certainly can – but only some of the features will not work without the FrontPage Server Extensions installed.

Some features used in FrontPage web sites are based on FrontPage Server Extensions released by Microsoft. Things like form processing, themes, hit counters and even web site publishing. These features are collectively known as the FrontPage web-bots, and these features will be disabled once we remove the Frontpage extensions from our servers.

Here is a list of some of the most common ones and suggested work arounds:

** Publishing ** Rather than utilize the FrontPage Server Extensions to publish your web site via http, you’ll need to utilize the built-in FTP client within FrontPage. If you are not already building your pages with FrontPage on your local PC and then uploading them, you’ll need to start as direct to server publishing will not be supported. After you click Publish, change the Remote Server type to FTP and fill-in the information indicated:

Remote Web Site Location = Host Name indicated under FTP User in your control panel
FTP Directory = the domain name you want to publish
You will be prompted for:
Username = FTP Login shown as FTP User in your control panel
Password = Your Password (FTP may be different then control panel password)

Frontpage FTP

** Online Form Submissions **

This is pretty straight forward. You just need to send the fields collected to a script rather than have FrontPage do it. Check out this script for Unix Servers; however there are many similar free products available. These scripts will collect all the fields on your form and send them to an email address of your choosing. Confirmation pages and emails are also available.

** Photogallery **

We really like the free CopperMine Photogallery and Gallery. They are easy to install and use on your web site.

** Site Search **

Perhaps the best solution is to utilize the Google technology and have them index and supply you with a search your site features. One of the products they offer through their Adsense Program is free code for a search bar. It is customizable and allows users to search the web, your site or any site you specify. Your unit may also make a little coffee money at the same time. This will also help in getting your site indexed by the most popular search engine these days.

** Statistics and Reports **

We suggest enabling Awstats in your hosting control panel. It’s a much better statistics program for your site than FrontPage reports ever was.

** Hit Counter **

There are many hosted and script based unit counters that work well.

** Subwebs and Permissions **

You can utilize FTP-Sub accounts available in your hosting control panel if you are using subwebs with different publishing authorities for different parts of the site. This allows restriction of the FTP login account to a certain folder on your site for that particular user.

** Automated Menu System **

If you are using the FrontPage generated menu system based on the Navigation view and build, you will need to replace that system with a traditional html or java based menu/navigation system.

If you have any questions about this announcement, please contact our technical support team.