Getting Started in Windows

Preface

This tutorial will show you how to setup your work environment for an Emergence website in Windows.

Your new Emergence site is most likely going to be inheriting itself from a base website. In this case we'll use skeleton.mics.me

The first thing we need to do is setup our work environment. We're going to use the built in Windows WebDAV client to connect to our site and then we'll use an open-source free program like Notepad++ to actually edit code.

About Windows WebDAV Support

Windows XP, Vista, and 7 come with a WebDAV client built into the operating system. However in Vista and 7 by default you can only connect to HTTPS hosted WebDAV connections.

One alternative to the default client is the program NetDrive. The duration of this tutorial however will be showing how to use the built in Windows WebDAV client.

Because by default windows will not connect to regular HTTP WebDAV connections, you will need to first enable this.

For more detailed technical information on the Windows default WebDAV client check out the SabraDAV wiki on the topic as well as this excellent summary of all the Windows WebDAV clients.

Connecting to WebDAV with Windows

The first thing we need to do is enable HTTP connections for WebDAV. To do this we need to modify a registry variable in Windows.

If you are familiar with the Windows Registry please make the following changes.

If not then please make a new .txt file in Windows, rename it to .reg file. Copy the text below into that text file and save.

Make sure that these registry settings are setup before attempting to connect. Because of the way Windows does caching it might lock you out until a restart if you try to connection first.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
        
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WebClient\Parameters]
"UseBasicAuth"=dword:00000001
"BasicAuthLevel"=dword:00000002

Now you can simply open the .reg file and windows will automatically apply the registry settings after a brief confirmation dialog.

Now we can mount an Emergence WebDAV folder as a drive letter in Windows. Go to the "Computer" or "My Computer" folder in Windows and click "Map network drive".

Windows Map Drive

Now you will see a dialog that asks you to put in some information about this network drive that you want to mount.

You're going to want to enter "http://example/develop" where example stands for your website's domain or hostname. You can pick any Drive letter to represent your WebDAV mount. Click Finish when ready.

Windows Map Drive Dialog

It will then ask you for your username and password. If they turn out to be correct you will already be connected and if you open it up you will see the following.

Windows WebDAV Connected Network Folder

Alternatively for those technically inclined you may also mount the WebDAV drive through command line like in the following screenshot.

Mapping Windows WebDAV Connection with Windows Command Prompt

Setting Up Your Code Work Environment

If you are already connected to WebDAV and you have a proper syntax editor already installed then you are done. Simply open the PHP file you want to work on and start working.

However for the sake of this tutorial my recommended work environment would be Notepad++ with the Light Explorer plugin which you can find for free in the Plugin manager for Notepad++.

If you spend enough time customizing you can turn your work environment into something that looks like the screenshot below.

Notepad++ Configured for Emergence Development