MH & xmh book: Frames help

Not all browsers support frames. If your browser supports frames, here's what should happen when you click on the "frames interface" link on this book's home page. Your browser window should split into three frames, each with its own scroll bar:
|                |
|                |
|       1        |
|                |
|                |
|     2     | 3  |
  1. The biggest frame, at the top (#1 above), has the home page. As you browse through the book, this is the frame where the book pages appear.
  2. At the left-hand side of the bottom is a narrow frame (#2) with the book's table of contents. This frame is for navigating. When you click on an entry in this skinny frame, the page should appear in the big frame at the top.
  3. On the bottom right-hand corner, there's a small frame (#3) with a box for entering index searches. When you enter an index search term, the matching entries should appear in the narrow "navigation" frame to the left. (You can also get the full index in the navigation frame. Click on one of the links to the indexes.)

You can change this setup accidentally. For instance, if you're showing a book page in the big frame and you click on a link in that page for "table of contents," you'll have the table of contents in the big frame and, probably, also in the navigation frame. (You can do worse things, like getting the non-frames table of contents into the table of contents frame. I'm trying to make this work better; I'd be glad to get help from frames gurus.) In general, avoid clicking links to "table of contents" in the big frame. If worse comes to worst, tell your browser to go back to the MH book home page (the index.html file) -- with your "back" button, with a bookmark, or with the URL -- and re-start the frames interface. I hope that the setup will feel more natural after you use it for a little while. (If it doesn't, or you have suggestions, please mail me a comment!)

The first time I used frames, my big confusion was that the Back/Forward buttons on the menu bar didn't work within a particular frame. In the X Window version of Netscape 2.0, at least, you go to back/forward contents of a frame by pressing the right mouse button within that frame. You'll get a Back/Forward menu for that frame.

Thanks to Alex Plotnick for the idea of making a frames interface. He also wrote the first version of this.

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Last change $Date: 1996/06/06 15:10:26 $

This file is from the third edition of the book MH & xmh: Email for Users & Programmers, ISBN 1-56592-093-7, by Jerry Peek. Copyright 1991, 1992, 1995 by O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. This file is freely-available; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation. For more information, see the file copying.htm.

Suggestions are welcome: Jerry Peek <>

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Last modified: Friday April 02, 1999.