Microsoft's ASP.Net Web Forms
ASP.Net is open-source, mature and easy to use. It was designed for Web development to produce dynamic web pages. It will handle the requirements of the vast majority of Websites.
The Web Form technology will be familiar to the Visual Basic programmer. ASP.NET Web Forms are pages that are written using a combination of HTML, Client-script, Server controls and Visual Basic Server code.
Each Form is compiled and executed on the Server, and an HTML page returned to the browser.
ASP.NET Web Forms are compatible with any browser or mobile device.
The features of ASP.NET Web Forms
The Visual Studio Integrated Development Environment (IDE) allows server controls to be dragged and dropped onto a Web Forms page.
It is easy to set properties, methods, and events for controls or for the page. These are used to define the web page's behaviour, look and feel. Visual Basic is used to write server code to handle the logic for the page.
ASP.NET Web Forms offer support for:
- Visual Basic control and validation
- Server controls
- Data binding
- Client-side scripting
- Testing, debugging and error handling
- State management
- Event handlers
- Dynamic content
And best of all – the development software, Visual Studio, is free!
Explanation of the Terms used with Web Forms
Server Controls – Are objects on Web pages that run when the page is requested and that create HTML for the browser. Examples of the server controls are buttons, text boxes, calendar and controls that display database records.
Master Pages – When a visitor requests a page, the layout of the master page is merged with the content page. This helps create a consistent layout for all the rendered pages in the Website.
Data-bound controls – ASP.NET provides options for saving and displaying Database records. Data-bound controls are used to automate the presentation of data in tables, text boxes and drop-down lists.
Deployment – Visual Studio provides tools that help with deploying and hosting the Web Forms Website.
Debugging – ASP.NET includes features to help diagnose problems that might arise in Web Forms application. Debugging and error handling are well supported within ASP.NET Web Forms so that applications compile and run effectively.
Stateless execution – The server has no memory of pages that it has processed – pages are stateless. Their stateless nature can become a problem. ASP.NET automatically handles the task of maintaining the state of the page and its controls.
Event-driven programming model – Web Forms provide event handlers on either the client or server. ASP.NET automatically captures events (like Load, LoadComplete, Unload) on the client and transmits it to the server.
Site map – A site map is an XML file that describes the navigational layout of a web site. It contains the URL, Title and Description of each page.
Code-behind model – All Visual Basic.Net logic is kept separate from the HTML Markup language. VB.Net can be used to retrieve data from a Database or file, manipulate text and the content of controls.
As an example
This Website uses Web forms:
- The Website has consistent Form design with the use of a Master file
- The Website has a consistent layout with the use CSS files
- The Website uses a second Master file for mobiles
- The Website has sub second response times (well, mostly)
- The Website caters for the requirements of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
- Navigation is controlled with the use of a Site-map and Visual Basic.
The Website according to the Pingdom Website Speed Test, now has a performance grade of 98 with a dramatically improved Website load time – faster than 98% of tested sites.