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Dreamweaver MX: The Missing Manual by David Sawyer McFarland

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Check In and Check Out

If you’re the sole developer for a Web site, the Site panel’s Get and Put buttons are fine for transferring your files. But if you’re on a team of developers, these simple tools can get you in trouble.

For example, suppose your boss emails you an important announcement that he wants posted on the home page immediately. So you download the home page from the Web server and start to edit it. At the same time, your co-worker Bob notices a typo on the home page. He downloads it, too.

You’re a much faster worker than Bob, so you’ve added the critical news to the home page and moved it back to the Web server. But now Bob transfers his corrected home page to the Web server, overwriting your edits and eliminating that urgent notice you just uploaded. (An hour later, your phone rings. It’s the boss.)

Without some kind of system to monitor who has what file, and to prevent people from overwriting each other’s work, collaborative Web development can be a chaotic mess. Fortunately, Dreamweaver’s Check In and Check Out system provides a civilized answer to this problem. It works like your local public library: When you check a file out, no one else can have it. When you’re finished, you check the file back in, releasing control of it, and allowing someone else on the team to check it out and work on it.

To use the Check In/Check Out feature effectively, it helps to keep a few things in mind:

  • When you’re developing a Web site solo, your local site usually contains the most ...

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