Thursday, October 23, 2008

DreamWeaver CS4 - First Look

I finally broke down and bought DreamWeaver CS4 today. This is the first time I've used Dreamweaver since 1997. It works a lot better on a 4GB Core 2 Duo machine than it did on a Pentium II 350 :-)

Anyway, here are my initial impressions.

The Good

  1. It doesn't crash! In the past eight years I don't think I ever used GoLive for more than 40 minutes straight without crashing. DW hasn't crashed yet.
  2. Works under Windows Vista.
  3. The upgrade registration was painless. I entered my version of GoLive and my GoLive serial #. No problems.
  4. DW supports sftp.
  5. I/O to the remote sftp server is fast, in direct contrast to every other web dev tool I've tried.
  6. Template page updates are fast. GoLive was always very slow.
  7. Live View allows you to see the browser view without going to the browser. Pretty slick.
  8. Dual Monitor mode.

The Bad

  1. It took me a long time to figure out how to activate the Import Golive Site command. It's not in any of the menus. Looking for "import golive" in Dreamweaver Help brings up numerous old articles about DW CS3, which worked completely differently. I think I finally found the answer by searching on "golive to dreamweaver cs4" (without the quotes) but the first several search results were still for CS3. The answer can be found at Dreamweaver for GoLive users,
  2. After going through the effort to find and install it, the GoLive import tool didn't work at all. It refused to open the site file. My workaround was to use the GL2DW tool from CS3, which is installed in GoLive instead of DW. GL2DW crashed halfway through, but it did enough that I was able to determine what to do myself.
  3. I got stuck on how to open an existing site. Turns out you use "New Site..." even for an existing site. From what I've heard, this will just be the first in a long list of Dreamweaver-isms that I'll run into.
  4. Where's the "remove whitespace" command? Every other tool I've ever used, even Microsoft Expression, does this automatically when the site is uploaded.
  5. Only Subversion is supported for source control, which is a little strange since SourceSafe is supported as a test server. Not a big deal, but SourceSafe integration would have been handy.


  1. Question? What version of GoLive were you using?



  2. I've used many of the Windows versions of GoLive in the past eight years. Most recently I was running CS2. I also ran GoLive 5, 6 and 8, under three different operating systems and computers.