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Newbie needs help choosing a DB


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#1
sweetums4620

sweetums4620

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I'm fairly new to this and am probably getting in way over my head, but...

I've been doing some work for a friend. She owns a store where they often host classes for their customers to attend. She uses FrontPage to edit her site and was until recently simply listing all her class offerings as a long page of text. I recently changed that so now customers can access each month's calendar via drop down, and all classes offered appear as a link to a pop-up with the details about that class. Unfortunately I'm still pretty new at this and I can only do it in HTML. I have to create a new page for each class, then insert the hyperlink to the pop-up in the calendar table's html code. And while I've figured out how to allow customers to view and print a list of all the class titles, there's no way for them to access a complete, printable listing of all the class descriptions. They have to click on the link to the class they want, and if they want to print they have to print each class individually.

Here's a list of what I'd LIKE to be able to do:
Create a "Classes" database, which would hold the information about every class (date/time, Title, description, etc.).
Be able to add/edit a class in the database ONCE and have it update the schedule (either add it to a calendar view and/or update the calendar view).
Be able to click on a link for any given event to view a pop-up or something similar (and maybe less annoying to users!) that shows details about the event (description, etc).
Be able to view a complete list of all classes offered (sorted by date or alpha by title)
Be able to print a complete list of all class descriptions/details.

I contacted the company that hosts her page, and they said they CAN add a database (which would ideally streamline all of the above, and make things easier on me as well as all her customers). But they simply told me to go to www.hotscripts.com, and choose a PHP database and let them know which one I want. I know enough to do what I've done so far, but not enough to determine which would work best for this.

Can anyone recommend somethign that might work for what I want it to do??? Thanks in advance!

ps - I'm sorry if I sound like an idiot, but as I said I'm totally new to this and trying to learn...

THANKS!!!
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#2
thenotch

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Are you looking for a pre-made script to do this or a database program to handle the queries?

mySQL is a free and powerful database program that you can use if you just need database software. If you are looking for a script to do the things you mentioned (basically it handles tables, db queries, etc) then yeah, you should take some time and browse through HotScripts and see if one suits your needs.

This is assuming I am reading what you put down correctly...
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#3
sweetums4620

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I THINK I just need the software? My only database experience is MS Access, which would have been able to do most of what I need, but that is apparently not one of my options, according to the person I spoke with. I want something where I can store tables of data (all the info about the class), and create reports based on that data to use on webpages (so users can print out a list of class descriptions). I'd also like to have a way to post the records in that table on a calendar (each record would be one class, and would be held on a different date, so I'd need to post them individually). Right now I'm creating individual pages for each class, then using HTML to create hyperlinks to open those pages in a new window when the user clicks on the link to the class they want. Plus, there's no way to generate a list of all available classes automatically, so right now I'm manually typing up something in MS Word to hand out in person, just so they can have a complete listing. If I change something on the web, then I have to go into my Word doc and manually change that too. It's a PITA to have to go through and do all of that every time I add a class. I would assume there must be a way to do that, but I don't know how (or what to use).

Does that make sense? I'm sorry if it doesn't, I don't know how to describe this very well.

I went on HotScripts but I don't even really know what I should be looking for. So maybe I'm just in over my head...LOL

Edited by sweetums4620, 03 May 2007 - 03:58 PM.

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#4
thenotch

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I went on HotScripts but I don't even really know what I should be looking for. So maybe I'm just in over my head...LOL


Quite possibly... the catch here is that a MS Access database functions night and day differently than a web database... mySQL is the de-facto standard when it comes to an online database. Now, that being said, it is so different from Access that you really need to understand what you are doing as far as database management and web design is concerned.

Creating a database driven site is not something a beginner in web design needs to undertake. If you don't really know much about design and how code interacts with the database and how to actually create the tables and functions within the HTML then you need to either sit down and learn how or let someone who does know how handle that...

Just my Posted Image
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