What To Do With Your iWeb Site

What To Do With Your iWeb Site

Last week I posted here about the lack of mention of iWeb and MobileMe website hosting in any of Apple’s communications about its forthcoming switch to iCloud.

I’d understand it not being mentioned by Steve on stage, but I expected to see at least some sort of help document somewhere. But no, nothing.

I even contacted Apple’s press people and asked them directly: “What’s the official advice for iWeb users who host their websites on MobileMe?”

I got no answer.

So I’m assuming that means there is no official advice. So if you’ve been using iWeb to build your site and MobileMe to host it, what are your options?

1. Continue to use iWeb to build the site, and host it elsewhere

In your site publishing settings, enter the details of an SFTP service from a web host. There are thousands to choose from.

This is going to be one of the simplest short-time solutions, but unlikely to be a good choice for the long term, because if iWeb is sidelined then sooner or later it will simply stop working. Apple will no longer provide support for it, declaring it obsolete. Chances are you’ll end up having to use different software eventually.

2. Switch to a different site building tool, and host elsewhere

Your options here are almost endless. You could move to an entirely hosted service like WordPress or Blogger, and transfer your domain there. While both of them started life as blogging services, both have matured into decent hosting services for all sorts of sites, not just blogs. With a little work and imagination (not to mention a good choice of theme), you can turn sites here into almost anything.

Another option is to switch to an alternative desktop site editor, and set it up to publish your site at another web host. If you liked iWeb, the closest alternatives are Sandvox and RapidWeaver. Both have their pros and cons, and both are available for free trial download. Try them both before you make a decision.

Here’s the thing: I can understand Apple’s decision to kill this service. Few people used it, and Apple’s interests lie in serving the many, not the few. Fair enough.

But those few were still customers, people who have paid Apple money for a service.

If Apple intends to continue its hosting services for iWeb sites, photo galleries and so on, it could at least do those paying customers a favor and answer their pleas for more details. And if it doesn’t intend to continue those services, it should make that plain too.

If Apple expects people to put their trust in iCloud, it wouldn’t hurt to demonstrate that the trust people previously put in MobileMe wasn’t misplaced.

Related
  • Cian

    i use mine via dropbox
    publish to dropbox public folder
    copy public link to .TK and rename it
    simple
    theres a youtube tutorial somewhere out there 

    heres my site, made from scratch,
    http://www.cianshelves.tk 

  • Cian

    i use mine via dropbox
    publish to dropbox public folder
    copy public link to .TK and rename it
    simple
    theres a youtube tutorial somewhere out there 

    heres my site, made from scratch,
    http://www.cianshelves.tk 

  • Support 18inc

    WHAT! Soo, I have at least 50-100 people paroozing my site daily, mostly people who know me and want to see my art(which is why I created my iWeb site) and now my options are…build your site from the ground up and learn new software and switch over billing info and spend a week maybe month finding a service I like…OR….continue using my web site that may randomly not work one day…thank you for the info…excuse me while I write the nastiest letter I will ever write to One Infinite Loop. I’m pissed! And would very much like to drop a Mac pro on Steves head.

  • Wendell Sharp

    Ironically, I’ve been working on a simple iWeb site to advertise my clock repair business. I’m planing to host it on a commercial server so I’ll have a real domain name.

  • person287

    In my opinion x10 hosting was very good and free. For my site I’ve moved because I needed more bandwidth (speed) but I used it with iWeb for quite a while and didn’t have any major problems.

  • Mike

    Apple’s silence may indicate that they have a new twist on websites.  Steve hasn’t announced the death of websites yet, but you know it is coming.  Perhaps they will unveil Facebook like network of personal pages or personal apps?

  • Alek Popov

    After evaluating different options like CMS (WordPress, Joomla, etc) and WYSIWYG editors like RapidWeaver and Sandvox I think the best, easiest and most versatile solution is using a service like Weebly or Squarespace.

  • macAttack

    I use MacHighway to host my iWeb site and have been for a few years now.  Might be worth a look for those of you looking for a new place to host your site.  I’ve always had good interactions with those guys and they know Macs unlike some hosts..

  • aga

    Very nice style, but I could not get anything working on my iPad. If a menu iitem did pass me to another page, I could do nothing and could not get back to the menu without closing the page and reloading.

    If that is what you get with iWeb you would be better off without it because is not functional.

  • Andrei

    After the deafening silence re: iWeb in the last few months and noticeably last week, I started looking at alternatives.

    I bought Rapidweaver (in a fit of desperation), and also tried Sandvox, Freeway, Flux, WordPress, and finally chose Weebly.

    For $36/year, Weebly gets me: 10 websites, countless gorgeous templates, forms, drop-down menus, audio/video players, photo gallery and slideshow, shopping cart, contact form, visitor file upload, SEO, forum, blog, polls, surveys, RSVP form, site search, automated mobile versions, password encryption, site stats, HTML snippets, RSS, AdSense, Flash, maps, YouTube embeds, etc., etc., and HOSTING… For just $36/YEAR!!!

    Weebly FTW!!!  Stupid me, I thought I was going to miss iWeb’s ease. Weebly blows iWeb out of the water for much less $. It’s a smart, intuitive, beautiful, FAST program. My DNS redirects happened in minutes without a glitch, sites update in literally seconds, and it’s got true WYSIWYG across browsers and mobile (iPhone/iPad). 

    Weebly, I was blind, but now I see…

  • Ann Brooks

    Maybe few people hosted their iWeb sites on MobileMe, but many more have used iWeb to design sites and host them elsewhere. So I hope Apple doesn’t consider iWeb obsolete as a website design program and that they do continue to update it for new Mac OSs. iWeb is a great standalone program. I know a website designer who uses iWeb in addition Dreamweaver to design sites for her clients. I’m sure there are lots more.

    I can’t imagine that Rapidweaver, Sandvox, Freeway, WordPress, Blogger, etc could produce my recently designed, template-less, extensive iWeb site, hosted independently –  http://www.annbrooks.net  If anyone knows another program that could duplicate my site, please let me know, short of suggesting Dreamweaver! Thanks.

  • MoistPup

    you just have to pay for a new hosting service (like dreamhost for example.)  You then can continue using iWeb to create the site.  You’d also use iWeb to “push” your content to your new hosting service.

    You’ll actually save money by doing this.

  • Daibidh

    While I waited to see what Apple’s official response will be, I decided to try out a design/hosting solution that looked interesting.  I was amazed how easy it was to transfer my entire site over.  I found the tools as easy as iWeb but the hosting was a lot more feature rich.  Within a week, I was hooked.

    Explain to me again why we should care about iWeb/MobileMe hosting.  It’s a slow and anemic service that costs more than most of the better and faster alternatives.  How stupid are we?!

  • Daibidh

    While I waited to see what Apple’s official response will be, I decided to try out a design/hosting solution that looked interesting.  I was amazed how easy it was to transfer my entire site over.  I found the tools as easy as iWeb but the hosting was a lot more feature rich.  Within a week, I was hooked.

    Explain to me again why we should care about iWeb/MobileMe hosting.  It’s a slow and anemic service that costs more than most of the better and faster alternatives.  How stupid are we?!

  • springub

    Jimdo offers a cool alternative http://www.jimdo.com/2011/06/1

  • mariposa

    please email me the alternative you have chosen to go with.  i’m working on a new site on  iWeb right now and don’t want to get too far if i have to switch over to something else eventually.  

  • Bizlaw

    I build my site in iWeb and host it at Bluehost. Works great.

  • Shane

    Here’s what was emailed to me by ‘Apple’:
    Important information for MobileMe members.Dear MobileMe member, We’d like to share some exciting news with you about iCloud — Apple’s upcoming cloud service, which stores your content and wirelessly pushes it to your devices. iCloud integrates seamlessly with your apps, so everything happens automatically. Available this fall, iCloud is free for iOS 5 and OS X Lion users.What does this mean for you as a MobileMe member?When you sign up for iCloud, you’ll be able to keep your MobileMe email address and move your mail, contacts, calendars, and bookmarks to the new service.Your MobileMe subscription will be automatically extended through June 30, 2012, at no additional charge. After that date, MobileMe will no longer be available.When iCloud becomes available this fall, we will provide more details and instructions on how to make the move. In the meantime, we encourage you to learn more about iCloud.Sincerely, The MobileMe Team 

  • Morgan Vierheller

    What software are you using? I have a complex site I would like to work on transferring right away. Thank you.

  • Daibidh

    Rapidweaver but I’m going nuts… the more I look, the more viable choices I find. LoL

  • Daibidh

    There are seriously a lot of options out there… iWeb is already dated.  I would find something else that will be supported in the future before you put too much time and effort into iWeb.  The code is clunky.  It’s slow.  The proprietary .sites2 file format does add unnecessary complexity when switching editors.

    Finding a “iWeb alternative” is being discussed on forums everywhere.  Just do a web search to jump over and read other user experiences and try out some of the software they’re using.  See what works best for you.

    The more I dig, the more interesting the options become.  I know Rapidweaver will do the job better than iWeb did for me but I’m geeking out on other options too.  LoL

  • Kearstin Nicholson

    I’m still using iWeb and hosting with MobileMe and I am seriously dreading doing any changes at all, whether it be simple or not. Maybe someday they’ll not only update a newer version of iWeb, but hopefully include some pay option to host with iCloud. I don’t want to redo it again! http://www.kearstin.com

  • Ty Ford

    Can I port over my existing iWeb site and continue to maintain it with iWeb?

  • NadiaL

    I have transferred my iWeb sites to BlueHost and have been trying to maintain them on MobileMe for the duration (through June 30th) as well. Everytime I ftp iweb site files to my BlueHost domain, MobileMe takes down my Mobile Me site – so I’ve been publishing the entire site to Mobile Me again. Now MobileMe is blowing off my “me” sites as soon as I republish to MobileMe. I can only publish them to BlueHost! Even though I’m still using iWeb to publish!

    In time I will get all my files into WordPress, etc. formats. MobileMe has been a ripoff from the start – promising 20GB of space to be used as the client chose, then delivering less than 1GB for the individual iWeb user package. Etc. Etc. This is the reason, in my opinion, that Apple didn’t have many iWeb users. Not delivering what it promised. In-ethics wins, out-ethics loses, and so does everyone involved. Apple’s Mac computers though are still THE BEST (in my opinon).

  • Ty Ford

    Nadial,

    Strange. I have moved my domain to Blue Host and have not had any problems so far, other than having to move files that I upload to Blue Host from one folder to another after they get up there. I still have my Mac website and am still using iWeb. Perhaps a call to Blue Host support can solve your problem.

    Regards,

    Ty Ford

  • NadiaL

    A call to BlueHost? The files are publishing fine to BlueHost. I contacted MobileMe (twice now) and have been told that my sites’ addresses are no longer valid (even though no file names were changed) and that the problem is with my file names and the search engines, that I will have to change my files’ names, then republish, then change my site addresses with the search engines. The “why” of it all was never answered. If I change all this… readers will still have no opportunity to go to the addresses they have been going to in order to reach the sites.

  • Ty Ford

    That’s very unfortunate and that has not happened to me…yet. Was this recently?

  • johnron

    I have moved my iWeb website over to DV Host:
    http://www.dvhost.com/blog/files/iweb-hosting.php

    So far I am very happy with the service. It’s inexpensive, and their support helped me move everything over. Thanks Tim!

About the author

Giles TurnbullGiles Turnbull is a freelance writer in England. He also writes for the Press Association and The Morning News. You can find out more at his website, and follow him on Twitter @gilest.

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