- Web Development Tutorials

Using Your Materials

A quick look at Notepad and Web Browsers
Okay, to begin using HTML you will want to familiarize yourself with the software you will be using. So, to get started, open Notepad (or your text editor). You should see a completely blank page. Now, type in the text below. We will make use of it later with the Web browser.

Type the following:

<title>Test Page</title>
Hi there, you have just written your first Web page!

Once you have finished, go to the "File" menu and click on "Save As". This will prompt you to create a name for your file. In the box, type in: test.htm

At the bottom of the prompt you should see a space that says "Save file as Type" or "Save as Type". The default is .txt, so you will need to change it.  Click on the down arrow on the right side of the input box. You should be able to highlight All Files(*.*) . Click on this to make the change. You should see something similar to the picture below:

sample box- using the all files option

This is an example using Windows 95. The text was enlarged so you could see the part we are interested in at this point. Now you may choose the drive and directory to save to, and click on "Save". You can use this routine each time you create a new HTML file.

If you do not get the option to save the file as the type All Files(*.*) , then select the plain text file type (usually shown as Text Documents, Text Files (*.txt), or something similar in the dialogue box). Be careful not to save it just yet though if you are using Windows. Windows will save it as test.htm.txt by default. To get around this, you will need to place quote marks around the filename, as shown in the image below:

sample box- using quotes around the file name

If you have a Mac, the way to do this will depend on your text editor. Something similar to the methods above should work for you. If someone with a Mac would like to write up something in more detail about this (as I don't have a Mac), feel free to send it to me.

Now you will want to use your Web browser to view the file you just created. So, start up your Web browser. If you are given an option to connect to the Internet, you can cancel the connection and you will likely end up with a blank page. You may also see an error saying the browser could not connect to "http://somepage.html" or something similar. You should be able to hit OK and get a blank page. Now, in the location box (where you manually type URLs), type in the path to your HTML file.  If you have the file in a directory called "myfiles", you would type the following:


If the file is on a floppy disk, you can type


provided you did not place it in another directory on the disk. Most browsers will display the page when you hit enter.

Another option you have, especially if you hate typing paths all day, is to use the "Open Page" option. To use this, go to the "File" menu in your Web browser.  Look for an option that says "Open Page", "Open File", "Open Local File", or a similar phrase. Click this option and you will be able to browse for your file and open it from there. The image below shows where this can be found in some versions of Internet Explorer:

sample of opening a file in the Web browser

Once the page is displayed, you will see something like the following:

Hi there, you have just written your first Web page!

I know, it's not much yet, but you have written your first Web page. You are now prepared to use HTML to build a Web page! Let's move on to Basic Formatting.

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