Copying exported files manually doesn't work! Why?

I exported my site to a local folder; clicked on the index.html file; the site opens in Safari and everything’s good!

I copied the contents of the exported folder to my Dropbox Public folder, copied the weblink of the index.html file, and pasted it in my Safari. Doesn’t work! Just the text appears. Why?
(I am still doing practice RW projects; so I don’t have a hosted server yet – for this particular website – which is why I am trying to copy it to Dropbox or Google Drive).


I doubt everything is OK. Have you tried clicking on a link to another page? It probably wouldn’t work.

Modern Web pages are designed to be “severed” by a web-server. A web-server does a bit of stuff behind the seen to make things work. Things like PHP resoving relative addresses and more.

Now you can “get by” without a web-server for the simplest page, but you are going to need a web server eventually.

RapidWeaver has a built-in web-server; you can preview the site locally with any browser you have installed on your Mac. Right-click on the page, Choose Preview Page With…, then choose the browser you want.


Since services like dropbox or Google Drive don’t use a web-server you are going to have issues.

If the site is rare enough along that you are ready to share, even if it’s strictly for review then you might want to go ahead and set-up a hosting plain. Your going to need one anyway.


Hi, Sri,

You can certainly use your exported site folder, but you need to change your procedure.

You have three choices:

  1. The method described by Doug above;

  2. When you do not have a domain for your website hosted on Internet

In this case, you need to download and install the MAMP ( server app. Then, follow the instructions (;

  1. When you do have your domain hosted on Internet

Using a FTP application, such as Transmit (but there’s a lot of others), connect to your domain on a server and upload contents of your exported site folder to the root of your domain. Usually, the root is a folder on server and it is called public_html, but that may differ, depending on a hosting company.

Thanks, Doug & Rob!

RapidWeaver has a built-in web-server

That must be it! It works when I double-click the index.html file in the Finder (only the home page, no php, so the page showed up correctly). May be it uses the RW resources that are available locally but not when the folder is uploaded.

I do have a couple of hosted sites. May be I can make a sub-domain in one of them and publish to it.


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