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Dear Aunt TUAW: Help me move on from iWeb and MobileMe

Dear Aunt TUAW,

With the demise of MobileMe and [the corresponding decreased functionality of] iWeb the question has come up with myself and friends as to what to use instead. Looking for something along the lines of iWeb but with a bit more flexibility.

Something like Adobe DreamWeaver is way too complex and I'd like to avoid web based applications that restrict you to their hosting services. I'd like to be able to simply build a web site and upload to my own host provider.

Your loving nephew,

Richard

Dear Richard,

Auntie took a look around at possible replacements. She feels comfortable recommending Karelia Software's Sandvox 2 as a well-rounded iWeb replacement. It offers great easy-to-use features that impressed Auntie, whose iWeb use was admittedly scattershot at best.

It's not cheap -- US$80 -- but after some intensive hands-on testing, Auntie feels it's perfect for people looking for a simple, flexible, and friendly solution with lots of handy webpage designs.

In Sandvox you'll find easy ways to create photo albums, blog posts, web pages and more -- most of what you'll be missing. And the interface will feel familiar and comfortable to anyone who has used iWeb, with the app's "what you see is what you get" live editing.

"We've been taking care of people graduating from iWeb for years," a Sandvox spokesperson told TUAW. "We think people making the move should jump over sooner rather than later now." Karelia publishes a handy migration guide, too.

You will, however, have to find your own website hosting plan, but Sandvox makes that easy too. You can select a remote provider and use FTP/SFTP/WebDav with an easy built-in "Publish" button. Uncle Steve covered some hosting options for the post-iWeb era here.

Other quick and easy website design options recommended by far-flung members of the the TUAW clan include RapidWeaver, Freeway Express AS and Flux. Uncle Steve also pointed out that if you want to have the control of hosting your own site but still want the convenience and sophistication of a full content management system, you can install your own WordPress setup... but that may be more geek aggravation than you signed up for.

Hugs,

Auntie T.

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