with Lorelle and Brent VanFossen

Complaint Against ipowerweb Web Site Host – Bad HTML Editor

I thought I would post this complaint I’ve posted to my new web site hosts, ipowerweb, publicly so that all could be warned. The odds are that they will “take this under advisement” and not do anything, but it is important that you, either the current customer or potential customer, should be warned.

While I am satisfied with their host services, I’ve not been totally happy with the slowness it took to get my site up and running, and some of the lack of emphasis on the fine print that screwed up the transfer. But in general, as long as I don’t have to contact customer support constantly (which was the case for the first two months), I’m happy enough. But this really gets my goat.

The following concerns the use of their provided online HTML editor.

I would consider the following a MAJOR BUG REPORT.

While traveling, I logged on to make updates to my main page and a few others on my site through vdeck’s HTML editor. The result is taking me HOURS to repair. We are still traveling, and I’m on a borrowed computer, so this is even more painful. It will be days before I can get to my own computer and files.

The HTML is in complete violation of the w3c web standards for html and xml, etc. In a two minute session to add a single paragraph to my main index page, the html editor totally wiped out months of code streamlining and optimization, and total restructuring to completely meet w3c web standards.

Required closing tags were removed. Spaces were added, after lines and between code lines. All tags were capitalized. Quotes were stripped from all selectors, including some title selectors (strings of text) which are absolutely required. While the page works, it only does so by the narrowest of margins, and some divs and classes weren’t recognized and screwed up the layout.

Once caught, I switched to text editing mode to spend hours trying to fix it, but this also has terrible problems. When highlighting code or text, it “grabs” the character before the start and/or end of the selection. This results in tags being left open when something like Word Here is selected and after deletion, it ends up just hanging there. Extra time is spent trying to set the spot with the mouse and then holding down the shift key to select, or constantly putting in an extra character to fix the over-selection.

Maybe I hold web site hosts to a higher standard, but I think they should be first in line to promote and be responsible for maintaining web standards, at least for themselves if not others. I know they aren’t when it comes to designing their own pages, with forced widths and poor layouts, but I can dream, can’t I. But screwing up someone else’s code that they have worked desperately over every character, space and line, I find that a violation.

Please take care to repair these horrid bugs.

Lorelle VanFossen

Tulsa, Oklahoma


  • Posted April 30, 2005 at 6:02 | Permalink

    I have to disagree (and I apologize if this post of yours is quite old). One should not judge a web site *host* on the basis of it’s HTML editor.

    Most people, for good reason, don’t look at the HTML editor a host uses on their admin side.

    Is this an oversight?

    Hardly. HTML editors provided by hosts are notoriously bad. It’s space and bandwidth that people are concerned about, and rightly so. Most people that are serious about Web sites don’t use the editor that hosts provide them – why when you’ve got Dreamweaver, FrontPage, …?

    If you know you’re going to be away, but will need to update code, try something like the following:

    1) Save the file as txt and upload to your server. Need to make a modification? Download the file (as txt), make the necessary modifications on the computer you are using, save, then rename to .html. Upload the HTML version via your admin interface (or Windows explorer if you’re setup to handle this). Then rename to .txt and upload your new plaintext doc. Then delete off of the computer you’re using, unless you’ll be using the same computer to modify code again.

    2) Email yourself the HTML doc as an attachment. I’ve long done this with papers, and doing it with HTML docs is no different. After all, if you can enter your site admin chances are you can also check your email.

    Those are just two suggestions to get around your situation from occuring. These have worked for me in a variety of situations, and I’m sure they can work for you, and anyone who stumbles upon this post via search like I did, as well :)

  • Posted May 2, 2005 at 20:25 | Permalink

    As I said in the post, for the most part, I find their services to be “okay”. And I do not expect host servers to provide top notch HTML editors, but I do expect them to provide editors that will just edit text and not totally rewrite my HTML. This is my complaint.

    And it serves as a warning, as you have found, to help others not make the same mistakes.

    While your method is wonderful if you have such access while traveling. I’m finding more and more computers at Internet Cafes and such putting restrictions on any form of FTP or even web mail access, even in public libraires. The fear of viruses and “bad things” is so intense that public computers are getting more and more restricted.

    Luckily, WordPress, which I now use, allows me easy access to my site with a built-in text editor, allowing me to easily change things quickly on the road, usually without restriction on public computers, though the very oldest ones still have trouble.

    The lessons you learn on the road….they never end.

  • Posted May 3, 2008 at 9:08 | Permalink

    I just canclled all 3 of my sites hosted on ipowerweb. They are the worst ever! They have changed over their system and it is a big mess and definitley not user friendly unless you are a programmer. I’m just a photographer!

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