To create web pages and documents such as manuals to put online, which free software to use? From HTML word processing to free website builder software, the solutions are varied .
With a simple editor you have to open two windows, one for the HTML editor, the other for a browser that allows you to see the rendering by reloading the page after each modification. But WYSIWYG publishers dispense with the second window, allowing to modify the content in the page as it is presented to the user.
BlueGriffon (Free website builder software)
By the creator of NVU, BlueGriffon has a WYSIWYG mode like Dreamweaver. In fact the Gecko rendering engine is integrated with the software to present the pages as Firefox does.
The software has the rare ability that Dreamweaver also offers to switch between view and source mode by keeping the cursor position in the document.
But he also has his faults. Loading a page for example is rather tedious and accumulates unnecessary steps. When using PHP files, you have to select this option each time you load a new file, and you wonder why.
Works on Windows, Linux, Mac.
One of the few WYSIWYG page editing software, created by the Linspire Linux (ex Lindows) distribution but focused on Windows. It is a fork of NVU made to advance the software, has full functionality and even goes online (though superfluous with FTP synchronization software). However, it retains the disadvantages of NVU: when we go from design mode to source mode, we come back to the top of the page, there is no contextual relationship between the modes.
The latest version dates from 2010.
Visual Web Developer Express
After Dreamweaver, Visual Web Developer Express is free website builder software online the most complete HTML editor. Manage style sheets, use a database, multiple views. When we select a part of text in design view and we switch to HTML source mode we remain on the edited part unlike what happens with Kompozer.
In the initial configuration, VWD does not recognize .php extension pages as HTML pages. We must add this extension and to do this we go in Tools -> Text Editor (open) -> File extension. Add .php and associate with HTML Editor.
The download includes .NET 3.5 if needed and can be quite lengthy.
Open Live Writer
It is initially part of the Essentials suite, and is of a more limited use since it only works with Windows and .Net installed, and it only concerns blogs, which it connects to (it supports most formats). An open source version has been available since December 2015.
Live Writer is enthusiastic about bloggers because it allows offline pages to be created, with a Wysiwyg interface that is better than any embedded publisher, and then uploaded to the blog once. the completed project, including the images or videos.
The last time I tried it, I noticed that every time an article was updated, the images were put online under a new name, so that after several editions, the hosting is saturated with images in multiple copies. It must therefore be verified that this defect has been corrected.
WYSIWYG editor of Web pages respecting the standards and realized by the W3C. Amaya is accompanied by a template editor. It is also browser and allows to directly edit the pages online and shows the errors in the HTML code.
Several tools are embedded in a command to change the DocType.
It is also an XML editor, MathML, SVG and CSS.
Sea monkey Composer
Mozilla’s HTML editor includes in the Seamonkey suite. It works locally and has a fairly developed interface.
To access the editor:
- Click on the configuration icon at the top right.
- Click Tools and then Web Development.
- To have an independent window, click on the icon on the far right with the closing one.
- Click on “Sources”, then in the working window, in the top left on Sources.
- If your code is not editable, click on “Pretty Print” twice.
Code changes are visible in the current page.
The editor of Advanced Explorer: to edit files on the fly
CKEditor, Tiny MCE and Online Publishers
Free website builder software have an online editor, often quite poor, which justifies the existence of Live Writer. For the price of a limited visual, of a uniform layout, one benefits from an automatic management of the site with classification of the articles in category, generation of RSS feeds . The software Pligg which makes it possible to create its own digg -like is a great success too the number of sites of this type has increased exponentially – but is no longer relevant.
These software have a toolbar and functions of complete editions. It is possible to interface them to a CMS and two tutorials on this site show how to use them to edit static HTML web pages online.
They can also be used locally.
CKEditor . The best known to date, works on all browsers.
TinyMCE . It will be included by default in many CMS.
Libre Office contains a complete word processor that can also create lightweight and acceptable HTML files as web pages.
In HTML form the documents lose some of their visual quality so the software is better for documents such as manuals, which will have a Web version and a printable PDF version, the second to keep the original document rendering.
Since version 4, LibreOffice is compatible with CMIS, a standard for communicating with CMS such as WordPress (WordPress 3.5 requires a plugin).
Google Web Designer
To compete with Microsoft’s Express for Web, Google offers software that has the same look as the defunct Expression of its competitor, which would make applications based on XAML. The latter is replaced by HTML with similar functions. A graphic tool is used to make banners, where some see a tool for creating advertisements.
Web Starter kit
Created by Google, Node-based toolset and Ruby language for making web or local applications. Apparently conceived initially for Linux, it installs laboriously on Windows.
Free website builder software with templates
These sample templates are all free and included in TOWeb .