Managing Assets

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Managing Assets

With NetObjects Fusion, you can manage all the assets files, links, data objects, and variables used in your site. In Assets view, you can navigate to the pages on which these assets appear, delete unused assets, and verify the location of assets that are in use. For information about how to add assets to a site, see Page View Basics.

NetObjects Fusion uses aliases for files and external links, so you can globally replace an item that appears on several pages' such as a picture or an external link by replacing the file or link once in Assets view. If you insert a variable in text boxes on different pages, you can edit the value of the variable in Assets view and NetObjects Fusion updates all instances of the variable throughout your site automatically.


Working in Assets View

When you switch to Assets view, choose which kind of asset to view by clicking one of the four tabs below the views bar. You can sort a list by clicking a column heading, and you can change the width of any column by dragging the column divider to the left or right.

Depending on the selected tab, Assets view shows:

Asset type Column headings
Files Name, Type, In Use, Location, Size, Date, Verify Status
Links Name, Link To, Type, Target, Verify Status
Objects Name, Type
Variables Name, Contents

Managing File Assets

When you click the Files tab in Assets view, a list of the files associated with your site appears, including external files and those generated by NetObjects Fusion. File types include image, audio, video, applets/plugins, Java class, HTML, data source, and link target.

In Assets view, you can add assets, edit asset names, and go directly to the page containing a selected asset. You can verify the locations of assets in your site, and you can open an asset file for editing in the application associated with it. You can also replace assets, delete selected assets, or delete all unused assets in a single action.

For example, if you have an image file of an arrow that indicates the next page in the site, you could name this asset Next Page and place it on several pages. If you later decide to change the image to a pointing finger, you need only edit the file asset so Next Page uses the pointing finger image file. NetObjects Fusion automatically changes the image on all the pages that include the Next Page image asset.

The File dialog displays an asset's name, location, and the pages on which it is used. To display the File dialog, double-click an asset's name in Assets Files view.

Image files that you place on stacked pages to populate an internal data object are not listed in Assets view. You can manage such files directly on the stacked pages. For information about data objects and stacked pages, see Data Publishing.

File Asset Characteristics

To effectively manage assets, it helps to understand the characteristics of asset files and how NetObjects Fusion handles them in Assets view.

  • Assets view lists all assets ever added to a site whether they are currently included in the site or not.
  • Assets view is a list of pointers to the asset files in their directories. Assets view does not contain the actual asset files themselves. When you publish a site, assets are copied from their current location to the publish location.
  • Assets are not copied to the \Assets folder except in special cases when you import a site that contains assets in its assets directory or start a site based on a template with assets.
  • Assets view does not show the contents of any specific directory on your local hard disk or server.

Adding a File Asset

  1. In Assets Files view, from the Assets menu, choose New File, or click New Asset on the views bar.

The File dialog appears.

  1. In the Location field of the File dialog, type the path and file name of the asset you want to add, or click Browse and select a file.
  2. If you want, edit the Asset name and click OK. See Editing Asset Names and Locations.
  3. To force publication of the file, even if it is not in use, select Always publish file.
  4. Click OK.

When you add an asset in this manner, it is available for use in your site, but it is not yet actually in use. The asset now appears on the Assets tab in the Open dialog. See Reusing Assets.

Reusing Assets

By treating object files as assets, NetObjects Fusion provides you with a convenient way to replace or update multiple instances of an object. Reusing assets can also reduce the number of files stored on the server. Instead of adding multiple copies of a file in several locations, you add the asset once and then select from the list of existing assets when you want to place another instance of the asset. To place an asset:

  1. In Page view, choose the appropriate tool and draw a box to specify where you want to place the asset.

The File Open dialog appears.

  1. Click the Assets tab to see a list of current assets.
  2. Select the asset you want to place and click Open.

NetObjects Fusion places the asset on the page and opens the appropriate properties panel. In Assets view, you can replace all instances of this asset in your site using a single command, or add file assets. See Managing Assets.

Editing Asset Names and Locations

Giving custom names to assets can make them easier to manage.

  1. In Assets Files view, double-click the asset name to display the File dialog.
  2. Type a new name in the Name field and click OK.

You can also edit the location directly in the File dialog. For example, you could enter a URL instead of a file path to point to a dynamic image on a server. Such images, however, are represented by an X in Page view, because the asset is not accessible.

Opening a File Asset in an External Application

NetObjects Fusion can automatically open a file asset in the external application with which the file asset is associated. For HTML documents, and .gif and .jpg image files, you can specify your preferred editing application in the Application Options dialog. See Setting Program Options. For other types of files, see Editing Objects and Assets.

To open a file asset in an external application:

  1. In Assets Files view, select the asset.
  2. From the Assets menu, choose Open Asset.
  3. Make your changes and save the file in the external application.

Displaying a Page Containing a Specific File Asset

  1. In Assets Files view, double-click a file asset to open the File dialog.
  2. Select the page you want to see from the list of pages.
  3. Click the Go To button.

The page you selected appears in Page view.

Deleting a File Asset

You should only delete assets not in use. If you delete an asset in use on a page, the object containing that asset appears as a blank or with an "X" through it in Page view.

To avoid deleting assets in use, double-click the asset in Assets view to see if it's used on any pages before you decide to delete the asset.

To delete a file asset:

  1. In Assets view, right-click the file asset you want to delete and choose Delete File Asset from the shortcut menu. You can also select the file asset in the list and press the Delete key on the keyboard.
  2. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.

You cannot undo this operation. You must use the New File Asset command on the Assets menu to recreate the file asset.

Deleting All Unused File Assets

  1. In Assets view, from the Assets menu choose Delete All Unused File Assets.
  2. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.

NetObjects Fusion removes all file assets for which the In Use indicator is not Yes.

You cannot undo this operation. You must use the New File Asset command to recreate file assets.

Verifying File Assets

To make sure assets publish correctly, you can verify that all file assets are in their expected folders. However, if any portion of the file's path has changed, the file will not be found or verified. For example, if the hard disk drive letter is not the same, or not present, or if a folder name is changed or the directory is moved, or if the file name is changed or the file is moved, the file will not be found.

  1. In Assets view, from the Assets menu choose Verify All File Assets.

NetObjects Fusion verifies and reports the path status of all files.

  • When a file's path information is correct, NetObjects Fusion lists the date and time found in the Verify Status column.
  • If a single file is not found, the Verifying Files Used by File Assets dialog appears identifying the missing file and the original path.
  • If a folder containing assets is not found, the Verifying Folders Used by File Assets dialog appears identifying the missing folder and its original path.
  1. Resolve the paths of any lost files or folders.
  • To specify a new path, click Browse and locate the file or folder.
  • To skip the lost item and continue verification, click Skip. NetObjects Fusion gives this file Not found status and goes on to verify subsequent files or folders. If the file is due to be published, you receive a publish error.
  • To stop the verification process, click Cancel. The verification status of the current file or subsequent files is not updated.
  1. When verification is complete, click OK in the confirmation dialog.

Managing Links and Link Targets

When you click the Links tab, a list of all the links and link targets used in your site appears, including external links, file links, user-defined internal links, and smart links. See Creating Links and Anchors.

Links between entries in a data list and their associated stacked pages do not appear in Assets view. You can manage such links directly on the data list pages. See Creating a Data List.

Updating an External Link

The Link To location varies depending on the type of link. In Assets view, you can change the location of an external link yourself by changing the URL. You can also change the name of the link for Assets view but not the link's other characteristics.

  1. In Assets Links view, double-click the external link you want to update.

The Links dialog appears.

  1. Change the name in the Name field if desired.
  2. Update the URL in the Link To field and click OK.

You can only update the location of one link at a time. To update other external link URLs, repeat the process.

  1. If you have a list of links created in HTML and import the HTML into Page view, the links are automatically added to Assets view. Otherwise, you cannot import a list of links in Assets view.

Displaying the Page Containing a Link

  1. Double-click the link in Assets Links view. The Links dialog appears.
  2. Select the page you want to see in the list of pages.
  3. Click the Go To button.

The page you selected appears in Page view.

Adding an External Link

  1. In Assets Links view, from the Assets menu choose New Link, or click New Asset on the views bar.

The Links dialog appears.

  1. Enter a name.
  2. Type the link destination and click OK.

Be sure to include http:// or a similar designator.

Deleting a Link

  1. In Assets Links view, select the link you want to delete
  2. From the Edit menu, choose Delete Link or press Delete.
  3. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.

You cannot delete a link that is in use. You must use the Link dialog to unlink.

You cannot undo this operation. You must use the Add Link command to recreate the external link. If you accidentally delete a non-external link, you must recreate it in Page view.

Updating Link Targets

To update link targets:

  1. In Assets view, double-click the link target you want to update.

The Link Targets dialog appears.

  1. Change the name of the link target if desired.
  2. Click OK.

Verifying Links

To make sure links will work properly when a site visitor clicks them, you can verify link destinations.

  1. In Assets Links view, from the Assets menu, choose Verify All Links.

NetObjects Fusion displays a progress bar as it verifies and reports the status of link destinations. It accesses the Internet to verify external link references. If you are not connected to the Internet, the external links are not verified.

  • When a link's destination is found, the date and time of validation appear in the Verify Status column.
  • If a link's destination is not found, the problem is described in the Verify Status column.

When verification is complete, the progress bar disappears.

  1. Resolve the destinations of broken links by double-clicking the link and editing it as described in Updating an External Link.

Link verification takes place in the background, so you can switch to another view and continue working while links are being verified.

To verify links through a proxy server, open the Windows Control Panel and double-click the Internet icon. In the Internet Properties dialog, click the Advanced tab, select Use Proxy Server, and configure your proxy server settings.

When NetObjects Fusion cannot verify that an http, rlogin, tn3270, snews, or JavaScript link is valid, "Unsupported URL Type" displays in the Verify Status column. If NetObjects Fusion cannot verify a mailto, news, or telnet link, no status displays.

Managing Data Objects and Photo Galleries

Data objects are collections of fields of data. You can use a data object to publish data without using CGI scripts or database programming. For information about data objects, including how to create and delete them in Assets view, see Data Publishing.

When you click the Data Objects tab, NetObjects Fusion displays a list of all the data objects used in your site. In an internal data object, you can edit the name and field names and add new fields. See Changing an Internal Data Field Name.

For an external data object, you can change Simple fields to Image fields and vice versa, but you cannot edit field names or add new fields, because these items depend on data in the external data file. Data objects can also be deleted, but use care when deleting and make sure the data object is no longer in use on the site.

Photo galleries are a special type of data object. For information about photo galleries, including how to delete them in Assets view, see Creating Photo Galleries You can configure a photo gallery here by double-clicking it.

Managing Variables

Text variables make it easy to update text that appears throughout your site. User-defined variables are displayed in Assets Variables view so you can edit, create, or delete them. NetObjects Fusion also provides standard variables, such as the date and time the site was created or last modified, but these are not displayed in Assets Variables view.

Adding a Variable

  1. In Assets Variables view, from the Assets menu choose New User-Defined Variable, or click New Asset on the views bar.

The New Variable dialog appears.

  1. Enter a name and value for your variable and click OK.

Editing a Variable

  1. Double-click the variable in Assets Variables view.

The Edit Variable dialog appears.

  1. Edit the name and value of the variable and click OK.

If you edit the value of the variable, NetObjects Fusion updates all text blocks containing that variable with the new value. See Creating a User-Defined Variable for information about adding variables to your pages.

Deleting a Variable

  1. In Assets Variables view, select the variable you want to delete.
  2. From the Edit menu, choose Delete User-Defined Variable.
  3. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.

You cannot undo this operation. You must use the New Variable command to recreate the variable. Do not delete a variable that is in use. If you do, it will be replaced with Undefined User variable:variable name in the text where it was used.