Tutorial Formatting Guide

Version 1.3

If you want to publish a tutorial on HowtoForge, please read this guide to learn how to format your tutorial so that it fits into the look and feel of HowtoForge and looks attractive to as many readers as possible. These guidelines also help you to minimize the size of your document.if(typeof __ez_fad_position != ‘undefined’){__ez_fad_position(‘div-gpt-ad-howtoforge_com-medrectangle-3-0’)};


1 What Program Do I Use To Write My HowTo?

Use an HTML editor like Dreamweaver or the free alternative Bluegriffon http://www.bluegriffon.org/ or any other HTML editor that creates valid HTML. Do not use MS Word to produce HTML content because Word produces “strange” HTML…


2 How Do I Start?

Ok, you’re sitting in front of your HTML editor, ready to start, but what’s next? Please copy this HTML skeleton to your editor:

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN"
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1">

<style type="text/css">
.command {
    padding: 1em;
    border: 1px dashed #2f6fab;
    color: black;
    background-color: #f9f9f9;
    line-height: 1.1em;
        font-family: Courier New, Courier, mono;
        font-size: 12px;
        font-style: italic;

.system {
    color: black;
        font-family: Courier New, Courier, mono;
        font-size: 12px;
        font-style: italic;

.highlight {
    color: #FF0000;
	font-family: Georgia, "Times New Roman", Times, serif;
	font-size: 12px;
	text-decoration: underline;


Now you write your tutorial between the <body> and the </body> tags.


3 Formatting

3.1 Normal Text

Always use the default font for normal text and headings! Do not use <font> tags, and do not define your own CSS classes. All the formatting will be done by the HowtoForge CSS classes after you have published your tutorial on HowtoForge.

For example, something likeif(typeof __ez_fad_position != ‘undefined’){__ez_fad_position(‘div-gpt-ad-howtoforge_com-medrectangle-4-0’)};

<p><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif">This is a sentence.</font></p>

should be avoided. Simply use

<p>This is a sentence.</p>

instead. On HowtoForge, it will look like this:

This is a sentence.


3.2 Headings

Please use <h1>…</h1>, <h2>…</h2>, <h3>…</h3>, <h4>…</h4>, or <h5>…</h5> to format headings. Again, do not use <font> tags or CSS classes to format them.

The heading

<h3>This Is A Heading</h3>

will look like this on HowtoForge:

This Is A Heading


3.3 Commands

Please use the CSS class .command (defined in the <head>…</head> section in the HTML skeleton) to format shell commands so that the reader knows that it is something he has to execute on the shell. For example,

<p class="command">chmod 755 /path/to/file</p>

will look like this on HowtoForge:

chmod 755 /path/to/file


3.4 Contents Of Files

Contents of files should be enclosed with <pre>…</pre>. For example, if you want to show your readers the content of /etc/resolv.conf, you do it like this:

<pre>search server

This will look like this on HowtoForge:

search server


3.5 File Names, Protocol Names, System Specifications, Technical Specifications, Etc.

If you are writing about items related to the Linux system that are no commands, but that you want to be formatted in a special way nevertheless, you can use the CSS class .system. For example, if you mention a file name within normal text, it is a good idea to format it like this:

<p>Next we edit <span class="system">/etc/network/interfaces</span> so that it looks like this:...</p>

On HowtoForge, it will look like this:

Next we edit /etc/network/interfaces so that it looks like this:…


3.6 Highlighting

If you want to highlight something, you can use the CSS class .highlight. For example,

<p class="highlight">server1:</p>

looks like this:



5 Images

Please don’t use images that exceed 550 pixels in width!

4 Publish Your Tutorial

Please zip your tutorial (HTML file created according to chapters 1 – 3) together with the images and email the zip file to [email protected]. Please include your HowtoForge user name in the email so that we can publish the tutorial under your name.


6 Administrator Approval

Your new tutorial will not be available to the public immediately. One of our administrators will check it (formatting, contents, etc.), and most likely your tutorial will be approved. Afterwards it is available on HowtoForge.

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