Looking for a simple way to link a HTML form to a database.

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by InfiniteLoopy, Apr 30, 2011.

  1. InfiniteLoopy macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    Hello all,

    Unfortunately, I don't really have any programming language knowledge. I get by with HTML and CSS but that's about it.

    For a project I have, I'd like to create a simple HTML form where a user can select options and/or enter text into fields.
    I'd then like the data to be inputted into a database which would allow me to export it and view it.
    Is this what MySQL is for? What would be the easiest way to go about this?
    What good books/guides would you recommend?

    I could actually do what I want offline (as in create a form in a word processor) but am interested in seeing what online options are available?

    I realise that if I do this online, I will need to host it somewhere, so if anyone can recommend a free host (ideally offering subdomains on their URL or theirdomain.com/mysite so that I don't have to buy a domain), it would be most appreciated.
    I'd also need the access to be password protected.

    The concept isn't yet 100% clear in my mind, so any suggestions or advice are welcome.

  2. harpster macrumors regular

    Jan 26, 2010
    Mysql is the database language and PHP is the server side programming language that is most commonly used to interface the html form to the database. If you want to learn that just get a book like one of the Visual Quickstart Guides by Larry Ullman for Mysql & PHP. There are many books like this and online tutorials as well. Be prepared to spend some time on this if that's the direction your headed.

    You should also get a local server set up on your computer. MAMP for Mac or WAMP for Windows. They are free and give you a easy way to develop dynamic web sites without having a hosting account. Later you can move the site to a live web host.

    The other option is to use something like Wordpress where you can host for free and use one of the Form plugin's to make your form and store the results without having to know the code to make it happen.
  3. lucidmedia macrumors 6502a

    Oct 13, 2008
    Wellington, New Zealand
    If you have no experience in this type of work, I would suggest using a service like Jotform. Easy, web-based form builder. They host the database. You can embed the from anywhere.
  4. InfiniteLoopy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    Thanks for your replies.

    I'd kind of like to do it all myself but am also interested by the blog option. Are there free blog hosting and domains out there which will give me the required options?

  5. InfiniteLoopy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    Regarding MAMP:
    If I install in on a Mac which is on a LAN, can other computers on the same network access it or the sites it's hosting?

    Can anyone confirm that people can't access it via the web as well? (Just want to be sure that I don't get it messed up or visible before I want it to go live.)

  6. harpster macrumors regular

    Jan 26, 2010
    MAMP should be accessible to other computers on your LAN - just search on MAMP+LAN for details.

    MAMP is really designed as a local development tool, then you copy your site developed on MAMP to a live web server (hosted site). At least that's how I use it. MAMP Pro has some additional features which might allow you to view sites in MAMP on a live server but I'm not sure about that as I never used or needed the Pro version.
  7. localoid macrumors 68020


    Feb 20, 2007
    America's Third World

    You might want to take a look at Zoho Creator and see if it might meet your needs...
  8. InfiniteLoopy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2010
    I'll look into the various options available and come back if I need any more help. :eek:

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