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DreamweaverFAQ.com » Tutorials » Frames » Using Frames To Align Page Content - Manual Method


Q. How do I center my content without using the "Letterbox Frameset" extension?

A. You can use a little hand coding along with objects already included with Dreamweaver.
**This method requires your page content to be inside a table for left-to-right (horizontal) centering**

Using Frames To Align Page Content - Method 2

The Manual Method

First off, let me point out that the method I will use here doesn't use as many frames as the extension creates. Why? Because I want to give you an alternative method for centering when using tables to hold your content. If you plan to use layers, you will need the extra frames for the horizontal centering. After completing this tutorial you should be familiar enough with frames to add the nested frameset without problems. Therefore I will omit it here.

Creating The Pages

As in the previous example, I like to create my "framed" pages first. So let's begin by doing that.

border.htm- This page will contain what we want to use to surround the actual content on our site.
content.htm- This page, just as it sounds, will contain our sites content.
index.htm- This is the frameset page.

Creating The Frameset

Now that we have our border and content pages finished we are ready to create the frameset (index.htm) page.

With our frameset page open, select "Frames" from the "Object" palette's drop down.
Switch to Frames Objects

Then select the "Top Frame" object to insert the first part of our frameset.
Insert Top Frame Object

Your "Frames" palette Should look like this
Frames Panel with 2 Frames.
And your page should look like this
:What your page should look like now.
*You may be wondering how you will vertically center your content with only 2 frames.
The short answer....... You won't. That is where the hand coding comes in.*

The Hand Coding

You may be wondering why I choose to do it this way. I simply find it easier for me. Experiment for yourself, you might be more comfortable doing it another way. I just think this is faster than trying to combine two "Frame" objects. Which, by the way, would still require some code modification by hand. Unless, of course, you don't mind using nested framesets unnecessarily. In which case simply click the "Bottom Frame" object after selecting the top one.

OK, enough rambling. Let's get into the code!

To get at the code DW4 provides us with a couple of ways:
1. Select the "Code Inspector" from the task bar at the bottom of the window. align_wFrames1k.gif
2. Use the split screen approach by selecting View-->Code and Design.

Our code will look something like this:

<frameset rows="80,*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
<frame name="topFrame" scrolling="NO" noresize src="UntitledFrame-2.htm"> <frame name="mainFrame" src="Examples/align_wFrames2.htm">
</frameset>

We need to modify it to look like this:

<frameset rows="*,420,*" frameborder="NO" border="0" framespacing="0">
<frame name="topFrame" scrolling="NO" noresize src="UntitledFrame-2.htm">
<frame name="mainframe" src="Examples/align_wFrames2.htm"> <frame name="bottomFrame" scrolling="NO" noresize src="UntitledFrame-3.htm">
</frameset>

*Notice that we decided to save some time and went ahead and set our dimensions while adding the new frame. Our content is an image with a height of 420 pixels. This is reflected in our frameset properties. We also gave the new frame, and its source, a unique name.*

Your "Frames" palette Should now look like this:The Frames Panel with 3 frames.
And your page should look like this:What your page should look like now.

Setting The Properties Of Our Frameset

All that is left to do is tell our frameset what pages should be displayed within each of its frames.

If you are comfortable enough with hand coding feel free to set each frame's source from there. For those of you who aren't we will return to the design view and select each section within the "Frames" palette, then use the "Property Inspector" to set the source for that section.

Frames Panel: Selecting Frames

Set the source of "topFrame" to border.htm
Set the source of "mainframe" to content.htm
Set the source of "bottomFrame" to border.htm

Browse for File to be displayed in the frame.
*Warning* If your content page will need to be scrolled, be sure to change
the "Scroll" value to auto or yes. This applies to the "mainframe" only.

That's all there is to it!

The Example

See the finished product!

Download the files!

Related Tutorials

Using Frames To Align Page Content- Method Two: The Manual Method
by Bryan Ashcraft
URL: http://www.dwfaq.com/Tutorials/Frames/align_wframes2.asp

Creating and Managing Framesets in Dreamweaver
by Trent Pastrana
URL: http://www.dwfaq.com/Tutorials/Frames/framesets1.asp

Available Extension(s)

The following extension(s) can be found at the Macromedia Exchange by searching the word Frames.

"Letterbox Frameset" by Project VII
URL: http://dynamic.macromedia.com/bin/MM/exchange/extension_detail.jsp?extOid=16372

::This page last modified 8/13/2013 at 08:37::

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