Frame in CSS

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Let me know if it possible to pursue an objective similar to using a
frame layout, but in CSS. The basic goal involves creating a main menu
on the left column and having the content appear on the right. The
left frame would contain two menus updated independently outside the
static html file. Let me issue the standard disclaimer that I am not a
web developer and have basic to intermediate knowledge of html.

Let me explain the purpose.  My project relates to creating
troubleshooting documents for various computing activities. The main
menu has a list of topic specific items in the root folder (e.g.
Tips\menu1.html). Each specific item has a topical menu in individual
folder (e.g. Tips\Windows\menuWindows.html). For example, the main
menu would link to Office, Networking, Internet, and Windows. The
Office sub-menu would link to Word, Excel, Outlook, and Access; and
contain specific topic, which expand and contract in content. These
menus would continually change when adding or subtracting topics.
Static code would make updating menus topics time consuming especially
at the main menu level.

Why choose HTML over another document format like PDFs? Other formats
require additional software and can be platform dependent. I plan on
placing these documents on external drive. These documents should be
ideally viewable with just a browser and on most platforms like
Wintel, Mac, and Linux. I find myself using numerous applications at
random times. I archive useful tips and troubleshooting instructions
on a daily basis; as I may not revisited this application for entire
year; thus these documents serve as memory aid.

My initial thoughts were to shy away from frames and explore CSS
possibilities. Maybe, I could code two content boxes; float them left;
with two distinct menus; a main menu & topic menu. Each menu should be
updatable outside the static HTML. Would this notion be farfetched in
CSS (or should I just resort to frames)? Please clarify suggestions
with examples, links, or other generally useful information.

Re: Frame in CSS


You have at least 4 options:

1. Iframes. They are frames inside one HTML page.

2. div with the content manipulated with javascipt:


4. Just use ordinary frames
Their practical for the use you do, but keep the text formatting and layout
in CSS as you suggest.

New computer algebra system: /
My website:

Re: Frame in CSS


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CSS is about style, not including files in one another, so it's not a  
solution for your problem.
You've got several options:

Since you want to use those files locally, server-side scripting is pretty  
much out of question. I think your best options are either plain old  
frames or static, yet automatically generated pages. For links and more  
info see above.


Re: Frame in CSS

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Thanks, Martin and Mitja; your replies were very helpful. The links
are excellent.

I am still on the fence about the best approach, yet I am leaning
toward traditional frames. PHP would be ideal, yet you need to run
these documents with server side support, which becomes cumbersome for
me when viewing on a general browser.  Javascript could works as well.
Do you need additional compilers when viewing dynamic content?

Let me know if you have more links on dynamic content for recent
browsers. I searched Google before, yet the results are numerous and
time consuming to review. Your comments help refine my search. I need
to read more about iFrame, yet they seem very similar to Frames.
iFrame may be used to have the two menus.

The main decision about the preferable approach really lies if I want
to create independent pages that link to dynamic menus; or frames that
links to the content and forcing myself through the front page. To
clarify myself, I have about a hundred documents with notes about
different topics. Currently, I locate them through Windows Explorer
since they are categorized in specific folders. Actually, most
documents are in Word. Now, I want to create a navigation approach
that allows me to select the topic from the file structure or from the
document's navigation system. The ideal approach will allow me to
navigate additional topics like troubleshooting your internet
connection relates to networking & OS topics; each document is in
their respective folder. The frame approach begins at the root and
step into each category/folder. So I can't zip up a folder and email
it to a colleague. I am looking for the best of both worlds.

Most of these documents are for personal use. I am not part of a
technical support help desk team. As mentioned, I do use numerous
applications at random times. My notes help me remember key
idiosyncrasies about OS or application. I remain no expert in any one
application; yet remain a jack of all trades. I prefer html since it
allows me to control the bloating inherent in other documents format.
For example, I could re-use certain screenshots and style sheets
across these documents. In addition, Word document bloat when one uses
numerous screenshots.

Let me know if you have additional thoughts to add to this discussion.

Re: Frame in CSS

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the IE-only solution (I'll make this cross-platform) was
<div id=tip></div>
if (navigator.appName=="Microsoft Internet Explorer") { //I think this is
    tip.innerHTML="<i>instant HTML!</i>"; //IE-only, but really cool.
} else {
    document.write("<i>instant HTML!</i>"); //works on anything, but

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not for javascript.  ASP, PHP, vbscript, and javascript are scripting
languages.  they are interpreted on-the-fly rather than compiled like C++.
javascript requires time on the browser to run (may slow things down for the
user some).  PHP-generated HTML doesn't, unless you are doing a lot of
complicated DB queries.

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iframe is an embedded frame inside a document.  you specify the width and
height.  it also has some quirks compared to regular frames.

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you can embed Word documents using <object></object>
you can also force a download of .doc files rather than a display in IE by
using PHP to send header()s. just google "php header file download"

Now, I want to create a navigation approach
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did you know PHP has the ZIP library and a mail function embedded in it?

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