I'm having a hard time finding the right configuration for my css layout. Maybe I'm trying too many things at once.

What I want is to have a center column be 988px wide, and the left and right columns to evenly take up the rest of the browsers width. In addition, I want a footer to remain on the bottom even if there is no content in the center div. I can accomplish this part fine - so far.

The right and left divs will contain a background image and repeat-x - BUT, the issue is I'm trying to create the illusion the background image (for all 3 divs) is a solid image spanning the whole width of the browser - http://www.daniweb.com/forums/thread345979.html is the link to my original post on this topic, but the replies don't quite get me there.

If you notice from the above link - for the left div - its background image (right edge) must align with the left edge of the center div -- for the right div - its background image (left edge) must align with the right edge of the center div (confusing if you don't look at the graphic examples I made from the above link).

The whole reason I'm having to do this crazy mess is because I have some nav buttons in which I want a glow effect (done in photoshop using a layer blend) to happen on rollover, and the only way I know how to accomplish that is to include part of the background in each button state - I can't just make a transparent button because the glow is based upon its background.

From all the experimenting I've done, I have messed with the (min-height:100%; height:auto !important; height:100%) combination, but I can't figure out which div(s) need this. The left and right divs only contain a background image. I want their height to expand the same as the center div (according to how much content I stick into the center div).

Lastly, I want a footer (width:100%; height:150px) to stick on the bottom. I've read at least 30 web pages about sticky footers and similar to what I'm trying to accomplish, but I haven't found anything specific to what I want (it can't be that uncommon). I'm pretty sure it's all just a matter of having the right combination of css properties under the proper divs, but I just can't figure it out.

If it weren't for the left and right divs needing to be the way I described above, I've figured everything else out - the ultimate goal is to incorporate the left and right div with their background images.

If anyone can shed some light, I would buy you a cookie or two... thanks..

Hi.
As I understand you want the left and right divs be the same height as the center div, right? And the left and right divs have the same height (static). Only the center div changes its height.
I can suggest you using jquery methode.
First of all be sure that you include the latest version of jquery library in your html. I attach one, you can use it. The use this script:

<script type="text/javascript">
$(function(){
var rightLeft= $('#right').height();
var center=$('#center').height();
if(rightLeft<center){
$('#right').height($('#center').height());
$('#left').height($('#center').height());}
else{$('#center').height($('#right').height());}

});
</script>

And also for the footer being in the right place do the following in your css.

#footer{
clear:both;}//to clear all the floats;