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So I just finished my psd's and I am going to send them to a front end developer, but I'm at a loss at to the logistics of it. Do I just send them to the front end developer and have them upload them to my server, or to their test server? And then when I send it to backend development, do I just give the programmer my hosting credentials, etc, so they can login and work on my project? Is this how it works?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

You need to talk to your developers. There is more than one way of working, and they will be able to tell you their favoured process.

Typically, a designer/developer will work on your site privately on their own machine until they are ready to share the results with you, at which point it will be uploaded to a test server (yours or theirs). This is because developing on a remote server is often slower.

If you already have hosting, most developers will use that as a staging area to show you the beta site, and may suggest setting up a subdomain or subfolder (e.g. beta.yoursite.com) to preview changes without altering whatever's shown to visitors on the main domain (e.g. A 'coming soon' page or sign up form).

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+1 "they will […] tell you their favored process" – feeela Sep 8 '11 at 20:03

It's something that's best to be worked out ahead of time in order to avoid problems.

As a web developer, the way I've generally done this is to upload a work-in-progress to a testing location site. In most cases this was a customer specific sub-domain one of my domains. I set it up where it would not be indexed by search engines and only gave the link out to the client. I would upload changes from my system to the server when certain milestones were completed and inform the client via phone or email. In some cases, I uploaded the final product to the client's domain and in others they did it.

In a few cases, the client had development and beta locations of their own they wanted me to use. Most notably, this was done to allow me to have access to development databases on their server. In these cases, I never had access to a production server, only development and testing servers. The client's IT staff handled deployment to production.

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