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Take Control of iWeb: iLife ’08 Edition
Mar 12, 2009

Take Control of iWeb: iLife ’08 Edition

Learn how to make useful, attractive Web sites with iWeb!

Apple’s iWeb aims to help you build an attractive Web site quickly and easily, but not all of iWeb’s features are fully explained. If you want step-by-step instructions and plenty of time-saving tips, Web pro Steve Sande can help. In Take Control of iWeb, Steve walks you through all the steps for building an iWeb site and uploading it to MobileMe or to another Web host. You can look over his shoulder as he enhances iWeb’s templates with a designer’s eye, using tools like masks, reflections, and Instant Alpha.


p class=”quote”>Are you using a later version of iWeb? This title is about iWeb ‘08/iWeb 2. However, an iWeb ‘09 edition is available.

Example    Raven    Starburst    Mountain

More Info

Steve teaches you the best ways to make all types of iWeb pages—including blog, podcast, photo, and movie pages—and he covers topics that go beyond the basics and way beyond the online help. You’ll learn how add special elements to your site: iPhoto albums and galleries, YouTube videos, a Twitter feed, Google AdSense ads, Google maps, and forms that integrate with Google Docs. You’ll also find coverage of how to edit graphics so your site loads faster, how to import podcasts and videos, how to make image maps, and even ideas for working with CafePress, Google Checkout, and Zen Cart to create an online store.

Read this book to learn the answers to questions such as:

  • How do I create graphical effects like those in the above clickable images?
  • What are smart guidelines for naming sites and Web pages?
  • What’s the deal with iWeb Domain files?
  • What URL will my home page end up with?
  • How do I create an RSS feed for my blog?
  • How do I make an image map? (There is a way!)
  • Can I create an entire online store with iWeb?
  • How do I edit a graphic so its background color matches the color of my page?
  • What if I don’t want to publish to MobileMe?
  • What if I want to publish to MobileMe, but with my own domain name in my URL?
What's New

This list, which was excerpted from the ebook, notes the main new features in iWeb ‘08 that the ebook covers:

  • .Mac improvements: Apple has updated the .Mac service to make it more useful to iWeb users. For instance, you can now Publish to a Personal Domain on .Mac. Apple has also increased the amount of disk storage and the monthly bandwidth allowance, so even large and heavily visited Web sites can exist on a .Mac account. However, the .Mac terms and conditions still prohibit the use of .Mac-hosted sites for ecommerce.
  • Web widgets: With a new feature called HTML Snippets, you can add things like news headlines, live webcam feeds, YouTube videos, and stock tickers to your Web site. For examples, see Add a YouTube Video and Add a Form.
  • Google integration: Apple and Google have been getting cozy lately, and the integration of Google AdSense and Google Maps into iWeb 2 is a perfect example of the level of cooperation between the two companies:
    • The Google AdSense widget enables you to Add Google AdSense Ads to your Web pages.
    • The Google Maps widget provides a way to Add Google Maps to your Web content with one click.
  • New templates and theme switching: Apple has created 8 new themes for iWeb 2, bringing the total to 26. When you Choose a Template for your Web site, consider a new iWeb theme to give your site a makeover.
  • Instant Alpha: A powerful new photo editing tool, Instant Alpha, removes background clutter from photos you use in iWeb sites, giving the images a more professional appearance.
  • Improved integration with iPhoto: Through enhanced Photo pages, Web galleries, and My Album pages, iWeb 2 makes it easier than ever to Add Photos to a Web site.

Is there another edition that covers iWeb ‘09?

Indeed, there is. See Take Control of iWeb ‘09. It covers iWeb ‘09, also known as iWeb version 3.

Does this ebook cover MobileMe and iWeb?

Yes, it does! Although version 1.0 of this ebook shipped long before .Mac switched to MobileMe, in 2009 we released version 1.1 of the ebook, and it is fully MobileMe-savvy. If you buy the ebook now, you’ll get version 1.1. If you already own the 1.0 version, open it up and—from page 1— click the Check for Updates button. On the resulting Web page, you should find a download link for version 1.1.

Q: Does this book cover iWeb 2 or iWeb ‘08?

A: Yes. Apple confusingly gives iWeb (and the other iLife ‘08 applications) two version numbers, one that applies to the program, as in iWeb 2 (it’s the second version of iWeb) and another that refers to the iLife suite, as in iWeb ‘08. Sorry about that! We use iWeb ‘08 when talking about the program on the site, since we feel readers are more likely to look for that, but we talk about iWeb 2 in the book, since we feel that’s more clear when discussing the actual software.

Q: Do you have an ebook that covers iWeb 1, which came with iLife ‘06?

A: Yes, we do. See Take Control of iWeb: iLife ‘06 Edition, which covers that version of the program.

Update Plans

We do not plan to update the PDF of this ebook. However, a new edition that covers a newer version of iWeb is available.

Posted by Adam Engst

  1. iWeb Publishing to MobileMe to End in 2012

    Apple has announced the end of its MobileMe service, effective 30 June 2012, and has also announced that many of its functions will find equivalents in the new iCloud service from Apple, due to debut sometime in the last quarter of 2011. As it turns out, however, Web hosting on MobileMe is not going to be replaced by an equivalent feature in iCloud. Apple provides some details what iCloud will include and what it won’t in its Mobile Me transition page (you can also read more about the transition in the TidBITS article, “Apple Details Transition from MobileMe to iCloud,” 24 June 2011).

    Specifically, the capability of using MobileMe to host your iWeb site, as described in the “Publish Your Site” chapter of “Take Control of iWeb: iLife ‘08 Edition” (pp. 41-49) will end on 30 June 2012. In addition, the capability of using MobileMe Web galleries in an iWeb site, as described in “Work with MobileMe Galleries” (p. 97), will end at the same time.

    Apple recommends that you move any iWeb sites to a different Web hosting service before MobileMe shuts down, and explains the procedure in its document, “MobileMe: How to move an iWeb site from MobileMe to another web hosting service.”

    Apple also provides instructions for saving any photos you have in Web galleries in its support document, “MobileMe: How to save your MobileMe Gallery photos and movies”; however, at present Apple provides no guidance to users about what to do with iWeb sites that currently rely upon such galleries. We suspect you’ll have to find a new online home for your photos and movies and redesign your iWeb sites accordingly.

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  2. Managing Multiple Web Sites in iWeb

    Reader Michael B. asked, "I found the section on managing multiple iWeb sites in the ‘08 edition fascinating. However, I notice the same info is missing from the new ‘09 edition. Could you please say why? … I would dearly love to manage multiple sites—if only to experiment to see which template looks or works best."

    Here’s author Steve Sande’s reply: “The capability to work on multiple Web sites is built into iWeb ‘09. In past versions of iWeb, the only way that you could really accomplish this was to create separate Domain files, and open only the Domain file for the site that you wanted to update and publish. The new Site Publishing Settings, which are listed in the book starting on page 44, allow each Web site in a single Domain file to have its own publishing location and method.”

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  3. iWeb ‘09 Edition Is Available

    We’ve just released Take Control of iWeb ‘09, by Steve Sande. The 152-page new edition covers all the new features in iWeb ‘09 (plus those that remain from previous iWeb versions, of course).


    p>Generally speaking, Take Control of iWeb ‘09 walks you through the steps for building an iWeb site and uploading it to MobileMe or another Web host. You can look over Steve’s shoulder as he enhances iWeb’s templates with a designer’s eye, using tools like masks, reflections, and Instant Alpha. You’ll also learn the ins and outs of uploading, with special coverage of using a custom domain name and uploading to third-party hosts.

    New iWeb ‘09 features discussed include still-more widgets that can add special content to your site (for instance, a Twitter feed) and the new FTP capabilities that vastly simplify uploading to a third-party Web host. As with the recently released Take Control ebooks about GarageBand ‘09, this title is unusual in that it offers book-length coverage of a single iLife application.

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  4. Hear Steve Talk about iWeb on the MacVoices Podcast

    Listen to episode 969 of the MacVoices podcast and hear Steve Sande, author of Take Control of iWeb ‘09, talk about how much fun he’s been having when writing about iWeb and hanging out with the crew at TUAW. Steve gets under the hood with the details of what’s changed in iWeb ‘09 (more than most people though after Apple’s iLife ‘09 rollout at Macworld Expo in January) and shares his candid observations about his likes and dislikes with respect to iWeb over time.

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  5. iWeb ‘08 Ebook Adds MobileMe and Twitter Info

    We’ve just released version 1.1 of Take Control of iWeb: iLife ‘08 Edition. Author Steve Sande has updated the text to make sense for MobileMe, not .Mac, and he has added an appendix that explains how to display your Twitter feed on an iWeb page.

    Why release a new version of an ebook about iWeb ‘08, when iWeb ‘09 is available? First, lots of people are still using iLife ‘08 and don’t yet wish to put the time and money into an upgrade, and second, we were able to create the update reasonably easily as a interim step while drafting a new edition to cover iWeb ‘09.

    Readers who own the iWeb ‘06 ebook can upgrade to this new version with a 25% discount, and those who own the iWeb ‘08 ebook can download it for free. If either of these situations applies to you, open your existing PDF to page 1 and click Check for Updates. (If you’re already on the Check for Updates page for the 1.0 version of the iWeb ‘09 ebook, look above, on the Downloads tab!)

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  6. iWeb in iLife ‘09: Small Changes, Big Impact

    At first glance, iLife ‘09 doesn’t appear to offer much in the way of improvements to the iWeb user. But after delving deeper into Apple’s announcement, it’s apparent to me that the new version of iWeb has significant changes that should help in the design and publishing of iWeb sites:

    • It appears that there are some new themes. In particular, Fine Line has the appearance of a WordPress blog, while BeBop has a happy, retro 50’s look.
    • The Media Browser has a new added button—Widgets. This button makes it simple to add a number of widgets, including a new countdown timer, RSS feeds, and YouTube videos. There are even widgets that can embed iSight photos or videos into an iWeb site.
    • The biggest change appears to be in the area of publishing. Publishing your iWeb site to any server other than MobileMe used to involve publishing the site to a folder, then uploading the entire folder to the server via FTP. Now you just enter your FTP server information into iWeb, and you can publish your site and any changes directly to the FTP server.
    • Apple has also linked the new iWeb with Facebook. Any time you change your iWeb site, your Facebook friends are notified so they can see what’s new.

    Posted by (Permalink)

  7. Several Sites? Several Servers? Multisite for iWeb to the Rescue!

    iWeb is great for publishing one site to one server; preferably a MobileMe server. But what if you’re trying to use iWeb to create a number of Web sites that are hosted on multiple servers? It’s not easy—you have to save each site to a separate folder, then upload or synchronize those sites to the server with an FTP client one at a time. [iWeb ‘09 is vastly better at publishing multiple sites to multiple servers, and at FTP-based publishing. June 25, 2009 —Tonya]

    Clarkwood Software, LLC has an answer: Multisite for iWeb 2.3. This Mac OS X application works with iWeb ‘08 and older versions as well. Use iWeb to build multiple sites, and then fire up Multisite for iWeb. It takes care of putting the sites into individual files, which means that you needn’t publish every site every time you want to publish one.

    In my ebook about iWeb ‘08, I talk about how to create separate Domain files for individual sites. Multisite takes care of that work for you. You can use Multisite to duplicate, delete, and create sites, import or export sites, and even create separate Domain files to send to other people.

    You can try Multisite for iWeb before you buy. A fully functional 30-day demo is available from the Clarkwood Software Web site. A license for Multisite for iWeb is only $19.95.

    Posted by (Permalink)

  8. Publish iWeb Sites to Any Server

    One of the common concerns of iWeb users is the difficulty encountered in publishing iWeb sites to servers other than MobileMe. Mac developer Scott Finney of Plyxim has a solution for you. Scott’s Easy iWeb Publisher 3.0.3 makes uploading an iWeb site to another server as easy as dragging a folder and dropping it on the program’s icon. Unlike most FTP clients, Easy iWeb Publisher uploads only those files that have changed, so your iWeb updates are as fast as if you were hosting your site on MobileMe. Easy iWeb Publisher is shareware with a $7 suggested donation.

    Posted by (Permalink)

  9. Making iWeb Work with Firefox 3

    If you recently updated your Firefox browser to version 3.0, you may have experienced some issues with Photo Album pages, Photo Slideshow pages, and with blog comments. Fortunately for iWeb ‘08 users, there’s an easy fix—make sure you’re running version 2.0.4 (or later) of iWeb ‘08. You can check the version number by choosing iWeb > About iWeb. If you don’t have the latest version of iWeb ‘08 installed, use Software Update on your Mac (available under the Apple menu or in System Preferences) to check for and install the update.

    Posted by (Permalink)

  10. More Custom iWeb Themes

    Are you bored with the 26 themes that come with iWeb 2? You might want to consider trying some of the new third-party themes that are available:

    • In early June, Jumsoft announced ten new iWeb themes that can spark your Web design imagination. The themes are priced at $9.99 each, or you can buy the entire pack of themes for $69.99. My personal favorite themes from this collection are the sparse, paper-like Simple Info and the pastel-and-plastic Business.
    • iPresentee has a well-designed set of five new themes, each priced at $10 ($20 for the set of five). I liked the happy and bright Playable theme, and the animated Orange Light theme could be useful for a number of businesses.
    • Lamiavia has expanded on their line of custom iWeb 2 themes, now offering a total of 20 excellent designs.

    All these third-party themes come in a number of page styles (usually six or eight per theme), and have special installer programs to make adding the themes to iWeb a snap.

    Posted by (Permalink)

The Author

Steve Sande is a Mac consultant with Raven Solutions, LLC and has worked with Macs since 1984. Steve’s writing can be found almost daily on The Unofficial Apple Weblog, where he also hosts the weekly TUAW TV Live video podcast.