How to Build a Database Driven Web Site

If you ever want to create a state directory, article directory, dating site or link directory, you need to know about creating database driven web sites. This may seem like a daunting task at first, if you have never done it, however I was in the same boat as you. It is not as difficult as you think.

Benefits of building database driven web sites

-Store vast amounts of information about your products or services.

-Efficient data sorting and retrieval

-Complex queries and statistical analysis performed relatively easily

-Separate site design from site's content

-Create new pages on the fly without manually creating or editing new web pages

-Makes it easy for client to post content, update records without the need to know html or rely on a web developer.

-Advanced search capabilities

-Attract repeat visitors with fresh and constantly updated content.

-Update site information online without the need to upload web pages.

-Site maintenance greatly reduced.

-Enhance web interactivity

Requirements

MySQL - to retrieve information from a database, you first need to have a database. That's where MySQL comes in. MySQL is a relational database management system, or RDBMS. It's a software package that is very good at organizing and managing large amounts of information. MySQL also makes that information readily accessible by using a server-side scripting language like PHP.

PHP - this is a server-side scripting language. With PHP installed, your Web server will be able to read a new file (called a "PHP script") that can retrieve information instantly from a database and insert it into a web page before sending it to the browser that requested it. PHP is completely free to download and use.

Check with your current Web host. Make sure they have already installed MySQL and PHP on your Web server. Most web hosting companies already have it installed. If not find a web host that provides this service.

Steps to building a database driven web site:

You will be building a link directory site using a mySQL database and the WSN Links Script (a PHP script). Here's an example of the "Colorado Business Directory Site" that was built, based on following the 7 steps below:

http://www.hereiscolorado.com

1. Check that your web host has PHP 4.10+ (or PHP 5) and MySQL 3+ installed on the server.

2. To create the mySQL database on the web server:

-login to the cpanel of your server ie domainname/cpanel with your user name and password.
-click on 'MySQL Databases' icon.
-enter database name
-click 'add db'
-click on 'go back'
-under 'Users' enter user name and password for database
-click 'add user'
-click on 'go back'
-click on 'add user to database'

You should now get the reply that your database installation was successful.

3. Download the PHP script files to your desktop at: WSN links - http://www.isitebuild.com/cgi-bin/a/t.cgi?wsnlinks

4. Extract files from the ZIP folder and save them to a folder on your computer.

5. Upload all the extracted files to your hosting space

6. Set the correct permissions for your files.

7. To complete the installation and to customize the script, read the manual at:

http://www.isitebuild.com/cgi-bin/a/t.cgi?wsnlinks

You can continue to customize or edit your site online by accessing the admin panel within your web site.

Adding, sorting, retrieving, searching data, creating new pages, links etc can now easily be accomplished.

Congratulations!... you successfully have built yourself a database driven web site.

Herman Drost is the Certified Internet Webmaster (CIW) owner and author of http://www.iSiteBuild.com Affordable Web Site Design and Web Hosting. Subscribe to his "Marketing Tips" newsletter for more original articles. [email protected]. You can read more of his in-depth articles at: http://www.isitebuild.com/articles

In The News:

Web Developer  Seven Days
Stephen Caples  Mississippi State Newsroom
The Future of Web Development  Business 2 Community

The Power Of CPanel

cPanel is a control panel for your website and allows... Read More

Websites: You Get What You Pay For!

So you finally decided to invest in a web presence... Read More

2 Key Ways to Make Your Site a Success

If one more business owner tells me their website sucks... Read More

Have You Got Your Ear To The Ground Or Your Head In The Sand?

What happened on your website yesterday? What about last week... Read More

Website Content & Usability

Writing for the web is totally different to writing for... Read More

A Web Site for Your Small Business: How to Set Up a Website

Your web site will be your window to the world.... Read More

Three Things Every Website Should Do

When I started my company in 2002, I knew I... Read More

Preventing Repeat Form Submission Using PHP Sessions

We've all seen those messages on some websites warning not... Read More

Sticking To Your Plan

So you have a good idea for a business and... Read More

Top 5 Webmaster Tools You Can Pick Up For Pennies

1. SiteSpinner V2 - On Sale www.deprice.com/sitespinner.htmSiteSpinner is a user-friendly... Read More

Web Sites ? Should I Learn or not?

A common dilemma most small and medium businesses face when... Read More

Achieving Differentiation With Your Website

Internet Marketing is not a miracle marketing strategy ? competition... Read More

Five Reasons You Have to Stop Your Web Site

That's right. Your method, behavior and strategy you are now... Read More

How To Write More Powerful Online Text

Although there are significant differences among the various types of... Read More

My Yahoo Search - Beyond Bookmarks

Yahoo has long offered email, an online calendar, notes, bookmarks,... Read More

CPanel Fantastico - Features and Benefits

Fantastico is a 3rd-party cPanel add-on and can be purchased... Read More

12 Essential Tips to a Professional Business Website

1. Choose a big enough font size. A size 12... Read More

Dreamweaver 8 Preview

August 8 2005, Macromedia announced a release of Studio 8.... Read More

Eight Deadly Web Site Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Creating and maintaining an effective presence on the Web has... Read More

How to Listen on the Web

When building a relationship, listening is more important than talking.A... Read More

4 Marketing Tips for Resourceful Webmasters!

The internet is a sea of knowledge. Getting your information... Read More

Art, Artists, and the Web:Part: 2--First Steps in Building an Artist?s Website

What you should do and know if you are an... Read More

Content Management ? The New Standard in Web Design

The evolution of web development parallels the model of technology... Read More

How to Promote Your Law Firm Website On the Internet for Maximum Profit

Making maximum profit from your law firm website is important,... Read More

Thinking Of Taking Money Online? Whats Best For Merchants? PayPal, WorldPay or Something Else?

It's now easier than ever to take payments on the... Read More