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  1. #1
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    ASP Classic > ASP.net discussion

    Hi All

    Please don't think I'm a troll for this kind of msg.

    Believe it or not, I was a day-to-day dev/lover of ASP classic some 5 or so
    years ago, but work took me away from the whole web/asp scene. Fate (and my
    job) has brought me back and it seems like I've been kept in stasis and the
    four horsemen of the ASP apocolypse have been in and ravaged the world of
    ASP classic.

    ASP code seemed to be everywhere on google, but now everything has been
    taken over by .net or something else. Its like somebody has put ASP classic
    in a cupboard and we're not allowed to talk about it! The forums seem to have
    taken a battering as well.

    I've been a good lad and had a look at ASP.net (honestly I've never even
    seen it until this week!) and all I can see is that they've forced us to use
    an IDE and dumbed classic down. I know the last statement might seem a bit
    strong, but all of this binding of controls, master pages, block login page
    modules, etc are all well and good for the new user so that they can
    virtually drag and drop a solution into a portion of their web site, but the
    reason most of us coded via notepad was so that we had ultimate control over
    how things looked and how they worked. Working a the code level enabled us
    to make our code text very lean (MS Word HTML what a joke!) and we could use
    numerous techonolgies (eg CSS, ASP, DOM, Javascript, ASP, COM, etc) in our
    pages without any constraints but our brains. MS don't know how I work so
    their 'in a box' modules will no doubt limit me rather than make thnigs
    easier. Am I on my own on this??

    The master pages thing is a classic as it talks about making common 'chunks'
    for your pages, but the implementation (code wise) is way more confusing
    than the simple include file method that we all used and we could stick
    these includes any where we want and as many as we want.

    The only thing that I thought they would do to improve ASP was to provide
    more components/objects as part of the codebase like php does, eg ASP
    upload, ASP > PDF, ASP > JPG, etc - all built-in rather than us having to
    buy (or plead for from our ISP).

    Is it actually possible to code ASP.net rather than drag and drop objects
    like Visual Studio? I always did my ASP > DB stuff in code as you could do
    all of this in very little lines of code and do whatever you want, but there
    doesn't seem to be any 'raw coding' books out there. Everything is through
    the GUI, but then the forums all post code solutions. Where are people
    finding these source code examples??

    Sorry for the rant. I'd prefer to stay ASP classic, but it seems like
    everybody is putting it in the cupboard and moving on.

    Rgds Mojo

  2. #2
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    You're not alone...

  3. #3
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    Hi Mojo,

    Nice to know there are still ASP "coders" out there . Have been doing "Classic" ASP for about 8 years now, when the DotNet stuff were rumoured about, was worried that i better move on too or be left behind... that kind of worries. Tried a bit of the beta version and was not exactly left wordless. Still had work in ASP (Classic ) so kept at it. Still doing it.

    As you said, i too like coding, Maybe i sound like the kind who longs for the "good old days" gone by. I too would have loved to see the upload component , asp-pdf component etc. to be part of ASP 3.0. I am sure a lot of people would have kept to ASP 3.0,4.0 if "they" had given an option. ASP.Net could have developed own its own, as a seperate technology from ASP.

    MS says ( read about it, somewhere) that you can develop .aspx sites using notepad and the compilers from the command prompt. I really would love to see someone do that

    Remember what they called ASP when DotNet came by ? right, "Spaghetti Code". and this new technology was using "code behind", the wonder of wonders. Keeps the code clean and all that stuff. Know what happens now ? you "can " keep the code behind, but the new norm is "code beside" . So, what happened to the "code behind" wonder ? we are moving on, getting more advanced ...


    I think if they are doing it, better go the whole way. Forget the HTML tags, go the java way, and keep everything clean and white. Maybe i should not say so much about DotNet cause i dont know so much about it.

    That said, finally we all might have to bite the bullet. its just that maybe we should better wait until they decide on the exact form of the wondrous avatar, code behind,code beside,or whatever comes next.

    Meanwhile, you better learn to drag and drop , and blindly follow the mantra "Faster Development".

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    Smile I will STAY

    Yap, I will stay with classic ASP myself as well.

    Because I find it very simple and the point of it all is that it is already a "mature" web development tool that has all the functionality I need. dotNET?? I tried it but its complicated and associated by wizards that sometimes fail during deployment... and bound by so many versions. Thanks for those developers who are staying.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flakes View Post
    MS says ( read about it, somewhere) that you can develop .aspx sites using notepad and the compilers from the command prompt. I really would love to see someone do that
    You make it sound very difficult, but in fact, it is very simple and also well documented on MSDN.

    http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms229863.aspx

    When you're using Visual Web Developer (the free edition), this is the way to go when you want to compile your prohect, because compiling is not an option in the free edition. But you don't even have to compile your project, simply uploading your entire project, including the .vb or .cs files, will work also, just like uploading .asp files

    The hardest thing is to write error free code, compiling is a piece of cake. Also, I don't see why you would want to write this code in Notepad? Even if you don't use any option in Visual Studio, Intellisense alone makes you live much easier. And not to mention debugging! And you can get it for free also

  6. #6
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    The fundamental problem with classic ASP isn't really ASP, it is the underpinning. COM is a horror to support compared to .NET in just about every way imaginable. The default for every component was single threaded. In fact, if you needed real performance you needed to drop out to C++ to get any hope of realistic multi-threading in a fundamentally multi-threaded environment.

    Anyhow, yes, one can hand-code in .NET. And there isn't a requirement to use drag and drop data access. I would check out ASP.NET MVC, it is loads better for traditional website style applications.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    The fundamental problem with classic ASP isn't really ASP, it is the underpinning. COM ...
    I suspect most never used COM and relied totally on the ASP for web development.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    The fundamental problem with classic ASP isn't really ASP, it is the underpinning. COM is a horror to support compared to .NET in just about every way imaginable. The default for every component was single threaded. In fact, if you needed real performance you needed to drop out to C++ to get any hope of realistic multi-threading in a fundamentally multi-threaded environment.

    Anyhow, yes, one can hand-code in .NET. And there isn't a requirement to use drag and drop data access. I would check out ASP.NET MVC, it is loads better for traditional website style applications.

    I really don't think that the "normal" developer is worried about the underpinning/COM etc. His/her/my sites are not usually in need of a muti threading/real time environment.

    All I am saying is, you should not just leave somebody using a technology high and dry and forced,iis7ed and mailing-listed-suppressed into submission.

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    If you were writing any ASP code you were writing against COM. If you used any 3rd party components -- like the aforementioned ASPUpload -- you were writing against COM. It is totally inescapable. Considering modern versions of windows are removing the underpinnings, such as cdo.sys, the world of hurt is coming.

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    My classic ASP deployment uses COM+ wrapper (multi-threaded third party Cobol) so basically Im satisfied with it. The disadvantage of COM wrappers (DLLs) is that new version of Windows OS doesn't expose COM+ anymore though it is still the main engine in the backend. ASP dotNET advantage is that it deploys COM wrappers directly from the created web forms using wizard, and codes are exposed for easier maintenance (or it could be a disadvantage, because it exposes your source codes).

    Either method really depends on the developer balancing the two.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by infoRene View Post
    My classic ASP deployment uses COM+ wrapper (multi-threaded third party Cobol) so basically Im satisfied with it. The disadvantage of COM wrappers (DLLs) is that new version of Windows OS doesn't expose COM+ anymore though it is still the main engine in the backend. ASP dotNET advantage is that it deploys COM wrappers directly from the created web forms using wizard, and codes are exposed for easier maintenance (or it could be a disadvantage, because it exposes your source codes).

    Either method really depends on the developer balancing the two.
    ASP.NET doesn't really expose COM wrappers, unless you need to wire it into some other application that needs COM. You really should be running purely managed code within .NET. While unobfusciated .NET is readable with tools such as reflector it isn't readable in plain text. Not that that should matter at all for server-side code.

    My point was not that COM was not in the background, but only that ASP developers don't have to learn or maintain COM in order to use ASP.
    In many cases no, but those were the rails that you were riding on, and if you were doing anything interesting or difficult you probably have to understand said rails.

    I really don't think that the "normal" developer is worried about the underpinning/COM etc. His/her/my sites are not usually in need of a muti threading/real time environment.

    All I am saying is, you should not just leave somebody using a technology high and dry and forced,iis7ed and mailing-listed-suppressed into submission.
    *Every* website is a multi-threaded application by definition. Unless you only have a single visitor at a time. Does it make economic and business sense to support an outdated platform when you've got something that can do everything that platform did and more? Especially a decade later when everyone involved has had more than enough chance to upgrade and / or move on?

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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    *Every* website is a multi-threaded application by definition. Unless you only have a single visitor at a time. Does it make economic and business sense to support an outdated platform when you've got something that can do everything that platform did and more? Especially a decade later when everyone involved has had more than enough chance to upgrade and / or move on?
    Yes, enough time was given to upgrade or move on. But the frequent changes in programming models(code behind/code beside etc) does not inspire a sense of confidence in the developer, does leave him hanging undecided about which way to take.Continue in the same platform and upgrade (NOt just an upgrade,but means a major shift in the development paradigm) or move to another platform (which again means a major shift, but does not involve a "changing constantly" scenario wrt to programming models.). But, no one can keep back for ever, and have to take one path or the other.New guys coming into programming have their choice made easy, but for those who have been doing the older stuff and still doing it(there are still applications running asp 3.0) its a bit tough.

    To me, if i have to move, PHP seems a better option than Dotnet. Maybe its because i dont know much about PHP. But it does seems similar to ASP 3.0 Than DotNet does.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    If you were writing any ASP code you were writing against COM. ...
    My point was not that COM was not in the background, but only that ASP developers don't have to learn or maintain COM in order to use ASP.

  14. #14
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    Codebehind and Codebeside both have always worked -- it has really been a matter of what tool chain you wanted to use. MVC is a bit of a new beast for certain but that has been clear from the start of MVC.

    PHP and ASP 3.0 are pretty similar in a general logical scheme and model -- they are both so called 2nd generation web frameworks where there is not a clean separation between the front and back ends. It makes things tons more approachable and is defintely less overhead for trivial stuff, but for bigger applications one often needs to invent alot of infrastructure or otherwise jump through hoops to keep things maintainable. One huge difference between PHP and ASP 3.0 is that PHP runs a "shared nothing" sort of architecture where there isn't anything akin to ASP's Application object.

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    Hi folks,

    Just recently started with Microsoft technology, never mind asp.net technology! I have been doing research, and I've settled on a couple of things.

    First, asp.net is definitely not newbie material, unless you are going with very well used templates. It basically shifts the web paradigm into an event driven one, where certain magical tricks (nothing that you couldn't do, but they do tie in asp.net features). As was mentioned, Microsoft has developed components that work very well with this model.

    Second, the asp.net files (.aspx) are compile-able, just as with asp, but the syntax has been upgraded to support the codebehind and masterpage stuff. Alot of pages from asp translate very easily (and I believe most are simply compatible out of the box). So you *can* use the traditional way of coding, replacing com objects with .net objects, and vbs code with vb.net code. As someone pointed out, the .net ecosystem is much larger, supported, and in my opinion more consistent than the old com ecosystem.

    Third, there is a new page language called 'razor', which I believe is the asp equivalent in terms of form and usage. I'm thinking that this was developed as a simpler language for the MVC page pattern, which presumably would need (or could be simplified and thus be more desirable) less functionality in the 'view' part of the pattern. But this allowed them to bring back the classic 'Page' oriented site design much like the old asp pages, and so they created another package for that. Those pages are also what is used in the 'WebMatrix' IDE.

    I currently am using the asp.net stuff because I did want out of the box controls (and my coworkers were already using it). Since I had to learn the 'code behind single form based event driven' paradigm anyway, there is a good chance that I'm stuck here.

    But for you and yours, I recommend learning Razor, preferably through webmatrix so you can get the intellisense and syntax goodies. If your needs become more complex, then you can graduate to Microsoft's MVC model, which seems to me the way they should have gone in the first place.

    Here is a link to an introduction to razor.
    http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archi...ing-razor.aspx

    It is *nice*.

  16. #16
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    Hi All

    I've been coding ASP (I refuse to call it classic, you can call the new one .Net instead to differentiate) for a number of years now. I'm self taught from books and forums/feedback like this site. I have had and am still having a great time with it. Recently I tried to bite the ASP.Net bullet and I was completely bamboozled. I put this down to no formal training and a lack of underpinning basics.

    I use visual web developer express simply because I like intellisense although I can't work out how to make it comment out code with a keyboard command (when you want to comment a block of code).

    I'll be around for a while. I like ASP.
    Joe
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil
    is that good men do nothing."

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    "there is not a clean separation between the front and back ends"

    In some cases, there is not a separation between the two. My asp files' output changes content-type depending on whether the output is to be sent to a new page as HTML or to affect the current page by outputting JavaScript. My PHP scripts do the same. They have the same code to affect the same areas, why would I want to seperate them? With the seperate method, you make a new request which is seperate from the old, and resend everything again?!?!? Weird, when the client has most of it already.

    What I like about PHP is their dedication to their users, and they do not wish to have such a massive change in their system.

    I see myself as at bit of a hobbyist/craftsman when it comes to coding. I have ideas which I want to implement or just have fun with, and I use the knowledge and tools I've gained to accomplish the task.

    With .NET it seems I have to go back to learning, yet I already know most of the things I need. PHP, I can go back to old stuff and reuse with the minimal tweaking, if any. ASP.NET is so different but all I want to do is create and keep learning, not learn something new.

    It's too much of a change to hit people with, and if I have to do that much of a learning curve, I would rather spend it in PHP and expand on existing knowledge. Or return to perl. My host is amazing at optimizing the server for PHP, getting most requests from between 0 (not detectable) and 9ms! And that's with what's becoming a powerful backend CMS. My asp classic is pretty slow in comparison. When I see websites like facebook being run on Linux, the speed benefit of .NET has no weight, and especially while the sites that I am making are for small businesses where speed is of even less of an issue.

    I may learn ASP.NET, I've had a look and I like the way it cache's server side includes. A bit annoying when you want to change it though. If they take away asp too soon, I'll definately fall back to PHP rather than change to .NET. My asp & php sites are almost the same line for line, so it'll only take a database change to move from Windows to Linux. It'll take a bit more than that to change from asp to .NET
    LiveScript: Putting the "Live" Back into JavaScript
    if live output_as_javascript else output_as_html end if

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    Cool

    There's a lot of issues concerning this.. well for me .NET is somewhat a wrong leap for Microsoft. They made it too much way out of reach and with compatibility issues at first. You know what they full their back in??

    It is RAZOR. Well, if you look at Razor codes.... it is "both" classic and .NET combination. It is much easier and it is getting popular. Why?? Because it does not confuses classic ASP with .NET platform. The dotNET platform stands at the background and vbscript/html is in front of the codes. Razor is what I call the easiest way to go using .NET platform without doubting "classic" and "dotNet". It is BOTH!!
    Last edited by infoRene; Jul 25, 2012 at 18:25. Reason: additional comments

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    A question for wwb_99.....

    With asp you say it's "spaghetti code". But surely keeping front and back end separate you end up with "spaghetti filesystem" instead, a file for this page backend, a file for the same front-end, the filesystem must get just a confusing?
    Just a question. All my sites work asyncronously.
    LiveScript: Putting the "Live" Back into JavaScript
    if live output_as_javascript else output_as_html end if

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    [QUOTE=Markdidj;5155470]A question for wwb_99.....

    With asp you say it's "spaghetti code". But surely keeping front and back end separate you end up with "spaghetti filesystem" instead, a file for this page backend, a file for the same front-end, the filesystem must get just a confusing?[quote]

    Remember ASP.NET is compiled, so you end up with a few dlls from a much larger number of source files. Filesystem is much less "spaghetti" than in a traditional classic ASP (or PHP or anything that doesn't compile) app.

    Just a question. All my sites work asyncronously.
    I'd love to see how you do this. My understanding is you were stuck in Single Threaded Apartments in classic ASP unless you were writing your own C++ COM DLLs so doing real asynch programming -- which by definition involves multiple threads -- was impossible. Web servers can hide this to some extent as every request can be independent, but within a given request you could never get out of this cycle.

    @infoRene : Razor wasn't meant to turn the clock back to classic ASP. It was meant to replace the classic asp inspired webforms view engine that MVC was saddled with so they could build a much better system that was compsoable, testable and useful outside of a web server. The whole ASP.NET web pages -- which behaves quite like classic ASP -- was a happy accident after all that came out.

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    ♪♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪♪ ♪ ♪♪ Markdidj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    real asynch programming -- which by definition involves multiple threads.
    I thought async ment working independantly from clocks. Is Ajax multithreaded communication through a network? If it is then I should look into it. I only use the Aj of Ajax, don't see any point in the XML part.
    LiveScript: Putting the "Live" Back into JavaScript
    if live output_as_javascript else output_as_html end if

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    already 8 years exp. with asp. what i think is if they bring up a new update of Classic asp framework that includes extra components and new features it would be perfect. Classic asp is a really cool platform when it comes to web developing. DotNet is simply good and easy to use but complete another platform than asp. i dont understand why don't they support Classic Asp anymore. i dont really feel like giving up asp. it is easy to use. and what i think directly flows in script when i develop something. i really hope to see new updates for classic asp.I use vbscript myself but im pretty sure that if MS promotes JScript little bit, it will get more attention than DotNet. There are many javascript developers. if you come up with something that they already knows with few differences, no doubt that it will get it's old popularity back within a year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Markdidj View Post
    I thought async ment working independantly from clocks. Is Ajax multithreaded communication through a network? If it is then I should look into it. I only use the Aj of Ajax, don't see any point in the XML part.
    The XML part of ajax was just tossed in to complete the acronym. AJ just isn't sexy. Anyhow, taking advantage of threading in the browser UI and the multi-threaded nature of the underlying web server is different from writing asynchronous code on the server side. For example, let's say you've got a page that requests something from a remote service and a database. How I'd typically do this in .NET is fire off an asynch request to the remote service and an asynch request to the database, letting the remote calls run in parallel. You just can't do that inside classic ASP without getting into building C++-based COM DLLs.

  24. #24
    ♪♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪♪ ♪ ♪♪ Markdidj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    AJ just isn't sexy.
    I have to disagree with you there.
    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    You just can't do that inside classic ASP without getting into building C++-based COM DLLs.
    Do you not mean I? I have been playing with asyncronous javascript for 9 years, before Ajax and jQuery.
    You just can't send the requests asyncronously through the same script element.


    db.asp
    Code:
    <%
    Response.ContentType="application/x-javascript"
    Response.AddHeader "Content-Type", "application/x-javascript"
    
    'do your database query here
    
    %>
    o=document.createElement("<h1>");
    o.innerHTML="db Loaded";
    document.getElementsByTagName("div")[0].appendChild(o);
    remote.asp
    Code:
    <%
    Response.ContentType="application/x-javascript"
    Response.AddHeader "Content-Type", "application/x-javascript"
    
    'do your remote query here
    
    %>
    o=document.createElement("<h1>");
    o.innerHTML="remote Loaded";
    document.getElementsByTagName("div")[0].appendChild(o);
    default.asp
    Code:
    <head>
    <script type="text/javascript">
    function changeScript(s){
     o=document.getElementsByTagName("head")[0];
     n=document.createElement('script');
     n.setAttribute('type', 'text/javascript');
     n.setAttribute('src',s);
     o.appendChild(n);
     delete n;delete o;
    }
    
    // asyncronous javascript (both requests leaving at same time)
    
    window.onload=function(){
     changeScript("/remote.asp");
     changeScript("/db.asp");
    }
    </script>
    </head>
    <div>
     <h1>Default Loaded</h1>
    </div>
    The only benefit I can see in .NET is if the postback thing works without javascript. Can I do interactive stuff between client and server without js using .NET?
    LiveScript: Putting the "Live" Back into JavaScript
    if live output_as_javascript else output_as_html end if

  25. #25
    ♪♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪♪ ♪ ♪♪ Markdidj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwb_99 View Post
    The XML part of ajax was just tossed in to complete the acronym.
    Just to let you know, if it doesn't have XML in, then it's not AJAX. I came up with asyncronous javascript here at sitepoint before AJAX was invented, and I called it LiveScript. They applied for copyright of AJAX about 3 months after.
    LiveScript: Putting the "Live" Back into JavaScript
    if live output_as_javascript else output_as_html end if


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