1. Working with Servers
Making the leap from creating static Web pages and static sites in Dreamweaver to using Dreamweaver's advanced features to create full-blown, database-driven dynamic sites (or Web applications) requires working with the server side of Web technology.
A dynamic page, such as an online news page or a search-engine results page, includes content that may change each time the page is loaded in a browser. Dynamic pages update their content by connecting to a dynamic content source, such as a database, retrieving information, and adding that information to a Web page before it's displayed in a user's browser.
To build dynamic sites in Dreamweaver, you'll need both a Web server and an application server. Choosing these is usually more a matter of what's available to you or what your client is using rather than weighing one feature over another.
You'll also need to choose whether to host your Web server and application server on a remote or local computer, and, as you'll soon find out, there are advantages and disadvantages to each.
In this chapter, you'll learn how to install and configure a Web server on a PC using Microsoft IIS and Apache, and on a Macintosh using Apache. You'll also learn about the five server technologies supported by Dreamweaver, and how to install and access application servers on a PC using Active Server Pages (ASP), Macromedia ColdFusion, and PHP, and on a Mac using PHP.