Connect to your site using Dreamweaver

Updated on 20-October-2016 at 10:16 AM

Business Catalyst End of life announcement - find out more details.

You can manage the static assets of an existing Business Catalyst site using Dreamweaver or any other FTP client. This article details the steps to configure Dreamweaver to connect to your Business Catalyst website.

Note: the steps detailed below apply to Dreamweaver version above 2014.1.1. To find out your Dreamweaver version go to Help -> About Dreamweaver

Setting up your connection

Warning: When entering your username do not forget to add /dw at the end, see the Username section for details.

  1. go to Site -> New Site... to create a new connection. Alternatively you can also import a Dreamweaver site settings file rather than configuring the connection settings again. Take a look at the Import and export Dreamweaver site settings article for more info on this procedure.
  2. Choose a name and a location on the disk where the site's assets will be stored
  3. Select the Servers tab and configure the connection to the site and click the plus sign:
  4. Configure the connection settings
    • Server Name: the name of the connection (this can be anything)
    • Connect using: Choose SFTP. After selecting SFTP from the drop down the Port number will change automatically to 22
    • SFTP Address: this needs to be your site's URL. You can either use your own domain name or one of the system URLs - * or *
    • Authentication: Username and Password - should be already checked - do not change this setting
      • Username: this bit is very important. The username should contain both the site URL you are connecting to and the email address you are logging into the Business Catalyst Admin console with. For example: (it should not start with http://)
        The /dw bit at the end is extremely important (see why in the next section ). So assuming your site name is and the username you use to login into BusinessCatalyst is the username will become /dw
      • Password: this is the same password you use to login into the Business Catalyst Admin Console
  5. Click Test to confirm the data is correct. You should get this confirmation message:
  6. Click Save - the configuration is now complete and you can connect to your site.

Note: it has been signaled that at times DW will fail to connect to your site even when you're absolutely sure that the username / password combination used is correct. This can occur because the authentication through CC's application fails without warning. The resolution for this case is to close DW, then sign out from your CC application, then restart the CC application and log back in. Signing in through DW should now work when you retry.

Why do I need to add "/dw" at the end of my username?

The correct username is /dw. If you omit the " /dw" part Dreamweaver will connect to the site in "plain" mode and will disregard associations between pages and templates .

The system however will keep these associations on the BC side so what will happen will be something like this:

  1. Dreamweaver (provided the username does not have " /dw" added in the username) will request a particular page that has a template attached
  2. BC will serve that page 
  3. Dreamweaver uploads the page back
  4. BC will take the page but will not know how to unpack it (extract the content of the page), it will leave the page untouched (including the HTML content of the template which has now been merged with the body of the page)
  5. when it comes to rendering the page the system will render the content received (including the bits that belong to the template) plus the template associated to that particular page.
  6. the result is the page content will be wrapped in the template twice.

If you configure Dreamweaver to connect to the site using " /dw" added to the username at step 4 above the system will know how to interpret the HTML code of the file as template HTML code and not cause the "duplication".

Alternatively, provided you have previously exported your site settings from Dreamweaver to an XML site settings file you can use this file to import