WebDAV Web Folders for WindowsXP, FrontPage

Now that I have dynamic DNS working, I gave WebDAV another try. My goal was to connect from WindowsXP using the “Add Network Place” wizard.

There is a good overview of using WebDAV folders in Version Control with Subversion (the “SVN book”), Appendix C . After reading this, I reviewed the mod_dav and mod_dav_fs sections of the Apache documentation and the mod_dav_svn chapter of the SVN book.

WebDAV Installation Testing Process:

  • I learned from Appendix C that Konqueror (KDE file browser) uses an (undocumented?) webdav: scheme to browse webDAV folders. My first goal was connecting to webdav://localhost/fs using Konqueror. This worked; I was able to drag & drop files in and out of the folder.
  • Next I connected using my dynamic DNS address. This proved that the Apache mod_dav configuration, virtual hosts, and ZyXEL port forwarding were are all working. (Note: port translation caused this step to fail).
  • Windows XP ran through the “Add New Network Place” wizard and even requested a username and password, but then failed. Numerous pages on the web describe this scenario and suggest complicated workarounds. Once again the SVN book offered a solution: add a port number to the URL. This worked — I added http://xxx.no-ip.org:80/fs as a new Network Place. I was now able to drag & drop using the WindowsXP browser.
  • However there was a problem, again described and solved in the SVN book: “Microsoft released a bug-fixed version of XP Web Folders in January 2005, available at http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=892211. In particular, this release is known to fix a bug whereby browsing a DAV share shows an unexpected infinite recursion.” I installed this update and the recursion problem was solved.
  • Next I decided to see if FrontPage could publish to a WebDAV folder. I created a one-page web site which I then tried to publish using the WebDAV option. Password validation occurred and the local/remote window appeared, but the Publish action failed. Found the following Caveat, “Microsoft FrontPage insists on the presence of FrontPage server extensions for saving files back to a web server, despite using Web Folders. Other Office products as well as Web Folders are completely interoperable with mod_dav, though.” Indeed the Apache error log noted that files in _vti_bin weren’t found and that’s where FrontPage extensions are kept.

The next post presents the section of the Apache config file dealing with WebDAV and Subversion.

posted in webdav by Bozzie

1 Comment to "WebDAV Web Folders for WindowsXP, FrontPage"

  1. openSUSE 10.2: Configuring Apache with YaST « alll about linux wrote:

    […] this blog entry for details of connecting to WebDAV via […]

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