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Creating the sidebar

Once you have more than one web page in a directory you will want a list of links to them in a sidebar, and of course nobody wants to have to change the side bar in every file every time they add a new file to the list.

In your directory create a file named sidebar.txt that looks like this:

title: School Web pages
crumbs: Web pages

./ Introduction

---Getting started
accessing.html Editing your web pages
templates.html Templated pages

sidebars/ Navigation & tabs

tips.html General tips
writing-style/ Writing style
sources.html On-line advice
mobiles/ Mobile phones

---On-line Utilities
linkcheck.html Link checking
colours/ Colour chooser
resizer.html Image resizer
mobiletest/ Mobile site tester

At time of writing the above was actually the source for the "School Web pages" section of the sidebar to the left. Ignoring for the moment the first few lines starting with a word followed by a colon we see:

  • The first word on each line is the target the link will point to, the rest the link title.
    • Make the title link short!
  • './' means the current directory.
  • If the target is a directory put the '/' on the end. In any context at all, when referring to the index file in a directory I recommend not explicitly putting in the 'index.html'.
  • Lines starting with two or more dashes add the rest of the line as a section header.
  • There are a number of other options.


The submenu: keyword at the top of this sidebar.txt file causes this subdirectory to be displayed as a submenu of the menu one level above rather than as a new menu on its own. If you want to do this make sure that the menu and its parent are both be short enough that the combined menu is not too long.

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