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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Difference Between ASP.NET & ASP

What Are Active Server Pages (Classic ASP)?

Active Server Pages or Classic ASP, as it is more commonly known, is a technology that enables you to make dynamic and interactive web pages.

Classic ASP uses server-side scripting to dynamically produce web pages that are not affected by the type of browser the website visitor is using.

The default scripting language used for writing ASP is VBScript, although you can use other scripting languages like JScript (Microsoft's version of JavaScript).

Classic ASP pages have the extension .asp instead of .htm, when a page with the extension .asp is requested by a browser the web server knows to interpret any ASP contained within the web page before sending the HTML produced to the browser. This way all the ASP is run on the web server and no ASP will ever be passed to the web browser.

Any web pages containing ASP cannot be run by just simply opening the page in a web browser. The page must be requested through a web server that supports ASP, this is why ASP stands for Active Server Pages, no server, no active pages.

As Classic ASP was first introduced by Microsoft on it's web server, Internet Information Services (IIS), that runs on all versions of Windows from NT4, including Windows 7, Vista, XP Pro, and Windows Server OS's like Windows 2000, 2003, 2008, it is this web server that ASP pages usually run best on.

What Is ASP.NET ?

ASP.NET is a web application framework developed and marketed by Microsoft to allow programmers to build dynamic web sites, web applications and web services. It was first released in January 2002 with version 1.0 of the .NET Framework, and is the successor to Microsoft's Active Server Pages (ASP) technology. ASP.NET is built on the Common Language Runtime (CLR), allowing programmers to write ASP.NET code using any supported .NET language. The ASP.NET SOAP extension framework allows ASP.NET components to process SOAP messages.
ASP.NET web pages or webpage, known officially as "web forms", are the main building block for application development. Web forms are contained in files with an ".aspx" extension; these files typically contain static (X)HTML markup, as well as mark up defining server-side Web Controls and User Controls where the developers place all the required static and dynamic content for the web page. Additionally, dynamic code which runs on the server can be placed in a page within a block <% -- dynamic code -- %>, which is similar to other web development technologies such as PHP, JSP, and ASP. With ASP.NET Framework 2.0, Microsoft introduced a new code-behind model which allows static text to remain on the .aspx page, while dynamic code remains in an .aspx.vb or .aspx.cs file (depending on the programming language used).

ASP.NET compared with ASP classic

ASP.NET simplifies developers' transition from Windows application development to web development by offering the ability to build pages composed of controls similar to a Windows user interface. A web control, such as a button or label, functions in very much the same way as its Windows counterpart: code can assign its properties and respond to its events. Controls know how to render themselves: whereas Windows controls draw themselves to the screen, web controls produce segments of HTML and JavaScript which form parts of the resulting page sent to the end-user's browser.
ASP.NET encourages the programmer to develop applications using an event-driven GUI model, rather than in conventional web-scripting environments like ASP and PHP. The framework combines existing technologies such as JavaScript with internal components like "ViewState" to bring persistent (inter-request) state to the inherently stateless web environment.
Other differences compared to ASP classic are:
  • Compiled code means applications run faster with more design-time errors trapped at the development stage.
  • Significantly improved run-time error handling, making use of exception handling using try-catch blocks.
  • Similar metaphors to Microsoft Windows applications such as controls and events.
  • An extensive set of controls and class libraries allows the rapid building of applications, plus user-defined controls allow commonly-used web template, such as menus. Layout of these controls on a page is easier because most of it can be done visually in most editors.
  • ASP.NET uses the multi-language abilities of the .NET Common Language Runtime, allowing web pages to be coded in VB.NET, C#, J#, Delphi.NET, Chrome, etc.
  • Ability to cache the whole page or just parts of it to improve performance.
  • Ability to use the code-behind development model to separate business logic from presentation.
  • Ability to use true object-oriented design for programming pages and controls
  • If an ASP.NET application leaks memory, the ASP.NET runtime unloads the AppDomain hosting the erring application and reloads the application in a new AppDomain.
  • Session state in ASP.NET can be saved in a Microsoft SQL Server database or in a separate process running on the same machine as the web server or on a different machine. That way session values are not lost when the web server is reset or the ASP.NET worker process is recycled.
  • Versions of ASP.NET prior to 2.0 were criticized for their lack of standards compliance. The generated HTML and JavaScript sent to the client browser would not always validate against W3C/ECMA standards. In addition, the framework's browser detection feature sometimes incorrectly identified web browsers other than Microsoft's own Internet Explorer as "downlevel" and returned HTML/JavaScript to these clients with some of the features removed, or sometimes crippled or broken. However, in version 2.0, all controls generate valid HTML 4.0, XHTML 1.0 (the default) or XHTML 1.1 output, depending on the site configuration. Detection of standards-compliant web browsers is more robust and support for Cascading Style Sheets is more extensive.
  • Web Server Controls: these are controls introduced by ASP.NET for providing the UI for the web form. These controls are state managed controls and are WYSIWYG controls.