ASP.NET WebForms… Redux


ASP.NET & “Classic ASP”

ASP.NET WebForms was introduced commercially by Microsoft as a part of the .NET development environment in 2001.  Up until around 2010 it was the dominant web development environment in the Information Technology industry.

It was designed to replace what is now called “Classic ASP” in order to make web development easier to accomplish and learn.  And that it did do very successfully.  Since 2010 however, a movement spurred on by the Open Source Community has primarily turned the clock back to the days of “Classic ASP”, which was unfairly maligned by ASP.NET promoters both from Microsoft and the development community.  The same has happened to ASP.NET WebForms by similar promoters from the Open Source Community and the younger professionals, many who have never learned the capabilities of ASP.NET WebForms but have instead concentrated on the newer web technologies, which in reality are not all that new.

“Classic ASP” was at one time the best web development environment available to professional developers.  The emerging Java web development standards of the day, due to their inherent complexity could never compete with the development efficiency which a “Classic ASP” application could be built.

No doubt, “Classic ASP” had its disadvantages that were eventually promoted to allow it to be replaced by ASP.NET WebForms but in it’s day nothing could match it’s dominant ease-of-use construct.

“Classic ASP” was in effect a mirror image of the current bandwagon of technologies without all the bells and whistles that have been added to them.  It allowed one to create both mixed-code modules where HTML, markup script, and dynamic scripts could be implemented.  For those that wanted code-only modules, this option was as much an option as the mixed-code one.  In this type of code-base, HTML and markup script were simply made as constants to Request.Response statements while still being able to access and process dynamic script either implemented with VBScript or JavaScript.

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Standard ASP.NET Web Forms SEO Friendly Routing


ASP.NET MVC gets all the credit currently for having SEO friendly routing as part of its inherent implementation.  However, similar routing capability was implemented into Standard ASP.NET (Web Forms) 4.0 and is part of all the later 4.x versions as well.  It is also implemented in a fairly similar manner.

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ASP.NET MVC vs ASP.NET: The Debate Still Rages


This is a lengthy article that describes the history of how ASP.NET developed in the commercial environments and how ASP.NET MVC has attempted to usurp this powerful and mature environment.  The points used to describe the advantages of ASP.NET MVC when compared to its more mature sibling are described and debunked at length as nothing more than personal preferences by developers who prefer the MVC paradigm.

In the end it is demonstrated that both environments are more or less on an equal footing and it is both marketing hype and preference that has forced an issue that in reality never needed to take place.

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Disciplined Session State


Most often when developing ASP.NET (WebForms or MVC) applications the implementation of session-state is found to be an after-thought whereby such code is thrown in helter-skelter wherever it is found to be necessary.  Given that session-state is supposed to be used sparingly the thought that such implementations should be done cleanly is not much a priority.  The result is that session-state code is found many times look as if it was just thrown in as a necessity leaving developers who come onto a project later in its development cycle to have to hunt through an application to find where a session-state variable is set and where it is retrieved.

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