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Adobe Dreamweaver
Adobe Dreamweaver CC icon
Latest release CC 2020 (20.1) / February 2020
OS Windowssmall.png Windows 10 v.1703 or later
Osxsmall.png macOS 10.12 Sierra or later
Genre Web development application
Licence Proprietary
File format(s) .asp, .cfm, .css, .htm, .html, .js, .xhtml, .xml, .xsl, .xslt

Adobe Dreamweaver, formerly Macromedia Dreamweaver, is a web development application originally based on the codebase of Backstage,[1] which was acquired by Macromedia in March 1996.[2] Dreamweaver has been owned and marketed by Adobe since December 2005.[3]

Dreamweaver is available for both Mac and Windows. Recent versions have incorporated support for web technologies such as CSS, JavaScript, and various server-side scripting languages and frameworks including ASP.NET, ColdFusion, JavaServer Pages, and PHP.


As a WYSIWYG Presto-based editor, Dreamweaver can hide the HTML code details of pages from the user, making it possible for non-coders to create web pages and sites. One criticism of this approach is that it can produce HTML pages whose file size and amount of HTML code is larger than an optimally hand-coded page would be, which can cause web browsers to perform poorly. This can be particularly true because the application makes it very easy to create table-based layouts. In addition, some web site developers have criticised Dreamweaver in the past for producing code that often does not comply with W3C standards, though recent versions have been more compliant. Dreamweaver 8.0 performed poorly on the Acid2 Test, developed by the Web Standards Project. However, Adobe has increased the support for CSS and other ways to lay out a page without tables in later versions of the application, with the ability to convert tables to layers and vice versa.

Dreamweaver allows users to preview websites in many browsers, provided that they are installed on their computer. It also has some site management tools, such as the ability to find and replace lines of text or code by whatever parameters specified across the entire site, and a templatisation feature for creating multiple pages with similar structures. The behaviours panel also enables use of basic JavaScript without any coding knowledge.

Dreamweaver can use "Extensions" – small programs, which any web developer can write (usually in HTML and JavaScript). Extensions provide added functionality to the software for whoever wants to download and install them. Dreamweaver is supported by a large community of extension developers who make extensions available (both commercial and free) for most web development tasks from simple rollover effects to full-featured shopping carts.

Like other HTML editors, Dreamweaver edits files locally, then uploads all edited files to the remote web server using FTP, SFTP, or WebDAV. Dreamweaver CS4 now supports the Subversion (software) (SVN) version control system.

Syntax highlighting[]

As of version 6, Dreamweaver supports syntax highlighting for the following languages out of the box:

  • ActionScript
  • Active Server Pages (ASP)
  • C#
  • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
  • ColdFusion
  • EDML
  • Extensible HyperText Markup Language (XHTML)
  • Extensible Markup Language (XML)
  • Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations (XSLT)
  • HyperText Markup Language (HTML)
  • Java
  • JavaScript
  • JavaServer Pages (JSP)
  • PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor (PHP)
  • Visual Basic (VB)
  • Visual Basic Script Edition (VBScript)
  • Wireless Markup Language (WML)

It is also possible to add your own language syntax highlighting to its repertoire.

In addition, code completion is available for many of these languages.

Version history[]

Provider Major Version Minor/Alternate Name Release date Notes
Macromedia 1.0 1.0 December 1997 Initial release, for Mac OS only.
1.2 March 1998 First version for Windows.
2.0 2.0 December 1998
3.0 3.0 December 1999
UltraDev 1.0 June 1999
4.0 4.0 December 2000
UltraDev 4.0 December 2000
6.0 MX May 29, 2002
7.0 MX 2004 September 10, 2003
8.0 [4] 8.0 September 13, 2005
Adobe 9.0 CS3 April 16, 2007 Replaced Adobe GoLive in the Creative Suite series
10.0 CS4 September 23, 2008 DOM visualization tool, Live View and CSS Designer upgrades
11.0 CS5 April 2010
11.5 CS5.5 April 2011
12.0 CS6 April 2012
2014.1 CC 14 October 5, 2014 Creative Cloud
16.0 CC 15 June 2015 Responsive design capabilities with visual media query bars, direct integration with the Bootstrap framework, ability to preview and inspect content on mobile devices and improvements to the code editor
Color Meaning
Red Release no longer supported
Orange Release still supported but is an older version
Green Release still supported


  1. Why Adobe Doesn’t Understand Web Designers by Joshua Johnson, Design Shack. 2011-08-08.
  2. Macromedia in Deal To Acquire Iband by Reuters, The New York Times. 1996-03-15.
  3. Adobe Completes Acquisition of Macromedia, Adobe Systems. 2005-12-05. Archived 2005-12-07.

See also[]

External links[]

Adobe Dreamweaver
1 (1.2 · Attain) · 2 (Attain) · 3 (CourseBuilder · UltraDev 1) · 4 (UltraDev 4) · MX · MX 2004 · 8 | CS3 · CS4 · CS5 · CS6 · CC
Replaced Adobe GoLive in Creative Suite 3
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