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    Use this index to find information regarding your hosted domain.

Note that SFF Net People Pages (www.sff.net/people/...) are not hosted domains. These instructions are only for those that have a full Internet domain name registered and hosted by SFF Net. See the SFF Net People Pages section of the Your SFF Net Web Page help documentation if you have an SFF Net People Page.

Detailed Instructions Page Index

Accessing your Hosted Domain

To access your page, FTP to public.sff.net, using your SFF Net username and password to log in. Set your remote folder to your own domain name. For example, if you use a traditional command-line FTP program and your hosted domain's site is named www.bettyboop.com, you'd FTP to public.sff.net and then CD to /www.bettyboop.com. (The www is indeed part of your folder name.)

Some FTP programs allow you to use a single URL to access your site, i.e. ftp://public.sff.net/www.bettyboop.com, while others may require you to specify the server name separately from the destination folder like this:

    Server (Host) Name: public.sff.net
    Directory: /www.bettyboop.com

Your FTP or page creation program may use other names for the above items (such as "Host Name" instead of "Server Name"), but the basic principle is the same.

If you have problems connecting via FTP, your firewall(s) may be preventing FTP connections. Check to be sure. You may also need to change your FTP program to use passive mode FTP (PASV) instead of active. Check your program's documentation about how to make this change.

    Your default filename
    Users navigate to your site using an URL (Uniform Resource Locator - a.k.a. your www address). If the user (or link) only specifies the directory name on your site in an URL without also including reference to a specific filename (i.e. entering http://www.bettyboop.com/ instead of http://www.bettyboop.com/myfile.html), the server will send a default file to the browser.

    Every site should have exactly one default file specified in the top-level directory so users browsing to your site will get a response instead of a "File Not Found" error. Default files for any sub-directories on your site are optional.

    Your default filename can be any of the following. We recommend using index.html.

    1. index.asp
    2. index.aspx
    3. index.htm
    4. index.html
    5. index.php
    6. index.pl
    7. index.cgi

    The server searches for default files in the order shown above. This means that if you have both an index.htm and an index.html, then the server will only show the index.htm file to visitors.

    Note: If your domain was created before Feb. 1, 2001, the file type index.htp may have been included for backwards compatibility with older servers, and the order of preference shown above may be different. If your domain was created after February 1, 2002, you should not use use the .htp extension.

Shared graphics

You have a special virtual directory called /gfx on your site. This is a shared directory that is mapped into your own site's space (i.e. http://www.bettyboop.com/gfx/). You may browse the /gfx directory directly. Note: The gfx directory is only visible when browsing (using http://), it will not be visible when you are looking at your directory and files using ftp.


You have several options for adding scripting your your site:

    You have a directory called /scripts. Shared CGI programs are located in that directory. (If you have migrated here from another server on SFF Net, you may also have a directory called /CGI. This is a synonym for the /scripts directory. You may use either name, but we recommend using /scripts).

      Note: The /scripts directory is NOT visible when browsing (using http://) and it will not be visible when you are looking at your directory and files using ftp. However, when you reference program files in the scripts directory from your pages, the server will find them.

    You may run Perl scripts from any of your directories. You do not need to know the location of the Perl runtimes or libraries. The system is configured to ignore any directory information your script provides. Your script filename extension may be either .pl or .cgi.

    You may run ASP scripts from any of your directories. If you need a component loaded, please write to Tech Support and ask about it.

    Built-in Applications:

      The following programs are available free for your use on our servers:

    • Email
      Create an ASP file in your own directory. Here's a sample you can use as a template. Be sure your final version is called yourfilename.asp when you upload it to your own directory. The sample shows a typical feedback page, but you can modify it for generic form-to-email pretty easily. Full documentation is available at the GWXMail site.

    • Comments (form to email)
      Use <form method=POST action="/scripts/comments.exe/nul"> in your HTML. Full documentation is available at the Comments site.

    • Guestbook
      See How to Configure your Guestbook

    • Page Counter
      • Include the text <!--#totcnt--> on your page wherever you want the count to appear.
      • At run time, the server will replace the totcnt code with that page's hit count.
      • Sample: You are visitor number 59452 to this page.

    • Date and Time
        Note: These Server-side include (SSI) codes will not work on any page with a .ASP extension.
      • Include the text <!--#echo var="date_local"--> on your page wherever you want the date to appear
      • Use <--#config timefmt="%m/%d/%Y %H:%M:%S"--> before the echo command to configure for date and time
      • At run time, the server will replace the echo command with the current date or (or date and time)

    • Banner/Link/Quote Rotation (No longer supported)

      • This function is temporarily unavailable.

    Email Mailboxes and Aliases

    Your hosted domain may have both mailboxes and email aliases associated with it.

    A mailbox is a full POP3 account that resides on our mail server and requires the user to have an SFF Net username and password to send and receive mail. For example, you could have a separate mailbox for your sales group, your engineering group, etc. The number of mailboxes you may have is determined by the type of account you have with SFF Net. See the SFF Net signup information for details. Mailboxes can only be set up by SFF Net. If your domain is eligible for multiple mailboxes, you can request them from techsupport@sff.net.

    An alias is a special email definition that redirects incoming mail to an existing mailbox on the SFF Net servers or to an email address at another location. Aliases allow you to have any number of special email addresses@yourdomain, and you can have multiple addresses sending to one or many people. For example, you could have email sent to sales@yourdomain.com and info@yourdomain.com redirected to your sales manager's email address at Hotmail, and all other mail sent to yourdomain.com sent to your SFF Net mailbox.

    You may set up aliases yourself using the Domain Aliases control panel. You get to the control panel through SFF Net's WebMail program. Start WebMail and click the Options link. Choose the Domain Options link from the list.

    Pick your domain name from the drop-down list:

    Email aliases

    You'll see the Domain Aliases control panel page.

    Domain Aliases Control Panel

    • Existing Aliases
      This is where you can edit or delete aliases that are already defined. Select the alias you want to modify, and click the Edit button (or Delete if you want to remove it).

    • Add New Alias
      Use this section to add a new alias to the list. In the Name box, enter the email address name you want to add (i.e if you want the email address to be info@bettyboop.com, you'd enter info in the Name field. Enter the email address you want the alias to redirect to in the Email Address field. When you've filled out the fields, click the Add button to add the new aliases.

    • Mail addressed to any other address@...
      This section specifies what happens to email addressed to any address@yourdomain that does not have an existing mailbox or alias.

      • Bounces with a "no such mailbox" message
        This sends a bounce message to the sender indicating they sent to a non-existent address. This is the recommended choice, as it prevents receiving spam sent to random addresses at your domain.

      • Redirects to the same username but @
        If you select this option and fill in a domain name in the box, the mail will be sent to that user@theotherdomain. For example, if you have sff.net entered and email arrives for bettyb@bettyboop.com, it will be redirected to bettyb@sff.net.

      • Redirects to this email address
        Selecting this option will set the email address you enter as the default address for your domain. Not recommended due to the spammer tactic of sending large amounts of spam to common names at every domain. Use the "Bounces with a 'no such mailbox' message" option instead and create aliases (see above) only for email addresses you actually need.

    Your Private Area

    On request, we can provide you with a directory on your site called private that allows you to grant controlled access to anyone you'd like. Only those visitors to your site who provide a valid username and password assigned by you can access this directory. Note: Regular SFF NET People (www.sff.net/people/...) pages cannot have private areas.

    NOTE: Private directories are only set up upon request for hosted domains. If you need a private area, write to Tech Support to request one.

    IMPORTANT: You are solely responsible for maintaining the usernames and passwords and making sure your users understand how to access your private area (see the FAQ for Private Area Users below). SFF Net administrators don't know who your users are, and cannot reset their passwords or help them if they contact us with questions about getting into your site. Please don't request a private directory unless you're willing to take on this responsibility and make it clear to your users that you are their sole contact for help.

      Using the Private Area Control Panel (Hosted Domain Webmasters only)

      You use an easy-to-use web-based control panel to grant and remove access to your private directory. To start the control panel, you browse to your site using a special URL. Enter http://www.[yourdomain]:9902 into your browser. For example, if your domain is bettyboop.com, browse to http://www.bettyboop.com:9902.


      You'll be asked for a username and password. Put in your SFF Net username and password. If you control more than one site, you will see a pick-list. Choose the site you want to administer and click the Select button. If you are only authorized for one site, you won't see the pick-list; instead you'll automatically get your site.

      Private Area Control Panel

      Adding/Editing/Deleting Users
      If you want to edit an existing user, find that person's name in the drop-down list and click the Edit User button. Make your changes and click the Save User button.

      To delete a user, find that person's name in the Edit Existing User drop-down list and click the Edit User button. Then click the Delete User button.

      To add a user, fill out the blanks in the Create a New User section and click the Create User button. If you have included the person's email address, the control panel will automatically send new logon instructions by email. Changes take effect immediately.

      Private Area Control Panel

      Frequently Asked Questions by Webmasters

      • What usernames are allowed?
        Pretty much anything you want, as long as the username isn't already in use by your site, or by SFF Net. The control panel will not allow you to duplicate names.

      • How do I change a user's password?
        Passwords are changed on the Edit Existing User screen (see above). If you have included the person's email address, the control panel will automatically send new logon instructions by email. Changes take effect immediately.

      • How do I change a user's username?
        The control panel will let you change a person's full name, password, and email address, but not the username. To change the username, you must delete the existing user and create a new one using the new name.

      • I have my users set up correctly, but they keep getting prompted for a password. Eventually they are either denied altogether, or get to see just part of a page. What am I doing wrong?
        Visitors can't be two people at once. The visitor's browser will submit user information for every access to the server. If you are pulling content from areas with different user restrictions, the browser will suffer split personality, and the visitor won't get to see the content.

        Keep your content together, either all in one directory, or all in your main directory and directories underneath it.

      FAQ for Your Private Directory Users

      Here are some common questions (and their answers) your users may have about accessing your private directory. You may want to point them to this FAQ or answer them yourself.

      • Guest or Member?
        Guests have usernames and passwords assigned by an area's webmaster. Members are people who have paid for an SFF Net account. Some areas allow access only by guests, others only by members, and others by both guests and members. If the area you want to access only allows guests, then you are a guest whether or not you are also an SFF Net member. In this case, your guest username and password have nothing to do with your SFF Net username and password.

      • I have a username and password for a particular private area, but it keeps getting rejected. What should I do?
        Passwords are case-sensitive. This means Password, PASSWORD, and PaSsWoRd are three different passwords. Make sure your capslock key isn't on and try again. (Usernames are not case-sensitive.)

        If you still can't get in, check with the webmaster for the area you are trying to access. The webmaster assigns usernames and passwords, and can verify or change your password.

      • I'm a guest in several areas, but my username and password is different for each. When I switch from one area to another, my browser keeps asking for a username and password even after I put the right one in. How do I fix this?
        Just shut down your browser and then restart it. This problem is caused by the way browsers and servers interact. Your browser remembers the username and password for each site based on the server's name, not the particular area on the server. Multiple protected areas on the same server confuse many browsers. Closing your browser makes it forget your username and password.

      • Am I supposed to use my SFF Net username and password?
        That depends on how the private area is set up. Some areas allow access by SFF Net members; others are restricted to only those individuals the webmaster chooses to let in. If you aren't sure how a particular area is set up, ask the webmaster for that area.

      • I forgot my password. How do I get it reset?
        That depends on whether you are a guest or a member.

        • If you are a guest, you must contact the area's webmaster directly. Only each area's webmaster can change passwords for that area.

        • If you are an SFF Net member and access the private area with your SFF Net username, then SFF Net tech support will have to reset your password for you. You request this from the Member Services page.

      • How do I know who the webmaster for a particular area is?
        All of the private areas are invitation-only. The webmaster is the person who invited you and set you up with a username and password. If you've forgotten who that is, you may write to tech support and ask.

      • How can I see a list of all the private areas?
        You can't. The private areas are private, and access is by invitation only. If you forget the name of your private area, ask that area's webmaster for help.

      • I'm a guest. Will my username and password work elsewhere on SFF Net?
        No. Guests usernames only work on the private web server, and only for the area where you are a guest.


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