dreamweaver cs4 beta-1.pngWhen we announced back in March that Photoshop CS4 had been leaked there were (and still are) some skeptics that it’s the real deal. The timing of the leak seemed about right since the Adobe Creative Suite is on an 18 to 24 month release cycle, which would place the final release of Adobe CS4 somewhere between October 2008 and April 2009. It took 5-months for Adobe to release Photoshop CS3 from the time they unleashed the first Beta, and today we are one step closer to that stage.

Photoshop CS4 Beta hasn’t been released yet, but three other Beta products of the Creative Suite are available: Dreamweaver CS4 Beta, Fireworks CS4 Beta, and Soundbooth CS4 Beta. I think that’s a good indication that Photoshop CS4 Beta is on the horizon, but in this article we’re going to focus on the new Dreamweaver. If you already have a Dreamweaver CS3 serial number you’ll be able to use CS4 Beta outside of the trial mode, otherwise you’ll have just 2-days to evaluate it.

They have a new setup routine in place, and it installs surprisingly fast. What I didn’t like, however, was that they took it upon themselves to “skin” the entire application. I tested it on a Windows machine, and as you can see here it doesn’t take on any characteristics of the operating system (window border, menu toolbar design, etc…):

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dreamweaver cs4-1.png

Aside from the new design there aren’t many breathtaking features. Here’s what Adobe says is new in Dreamweaver CS4 10.0 Build 3963:

  • Live View: View your web pages under real-world browser conditions with the new Live View in Dreamweaver — while still retaining direct access to the code. The new rendering mode, which uses the open source rendering engine WebKit, displays your designs like a standards-based browser.
  • Related Files: Manage the various files that make up the modern web page more efficiently in Dreamweaver. The Related Files feature displays all the documents associated with your current page, whether CSS, JavaScript, PHP, or XML, in a bar along the top of your document.
  • Code Navigator: The new Code Navigator pop-up window shows you all the code sources that affect your current selection. A click in either Code or Design view brings up the Code Navigator pop-up, which displays CSS rules, server-side includes, external JavaScript functions, Dreamweaver templates, Library files, iframe source files, and more.
  • CSS best practices: The Property inspector’s new CSS tab shows the styles for the current selection as well as all the applicable CSS rules. Hover over any property to view a tool tip with jargon-free English explanations of CSS principles. New CSS rules can be created and applied in the Property inspector panel and stored in the same document or an external style sheet.
  • Code hinting for Ajax and JavaScript frameworks: Write JavaScript more quickly and accurately with improved support for JavaScript core objects and primitive data types. Work with popular JavaScript frameworks including jQuery, Prototype, and Spry.
  • HTML data sets: With HTML data sets functionality, you can create your data in a standard HTML table, a series of div tags, or even an unordered list and then choose Insert > Spry > Spry Data Set to integrate that data into a dynamic table on the page with sortable columns, a master-detail layout, or other sophisticated displays.
  • Photoshop Smart Objects: Photoshop and Dreamweaver integration has evolved to the next level of compatibility and functionality. Drag and drop an Adobe Photoshop PSD file into a Dreamweaver page to create an image Smart Object.
  • Subversion integration: Dreamweaver integrates Subversion software for a more robust check-in/check-out experience with file versioning, rollback, and more. Once you’ve defined Subversion as your version control system, you can update your site to get the latest versions of its pages directly from within Dreamweaver; no third-party utility or command-line interface is required.
  • Adobe AIR authoring support: Create multiplatform desktop applications from your Dreamweaver HTML and JavaScript sites with new Adobe AIR authoring support.
  • New user interface: Work faster and smarter across Dreamweaver and other components of the next version of Adobe Creative Suite thanks to a new level of integration and common user interface elements.

To download any of the Beta’s you’ll need an Adobe account even if all you want to do is download a trial. Here is a username and password you can use for that compliments of BugMeNot:

  • Username: monket@mailinator.com
  • Password: monket1

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!