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ASP.NET 2.0...is it powerful enough and if so...then

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Hey everyone, I was wondering, I just got done attending a MSDN Event that talked heavily on ASP.NET 2.0. I am currently prime on PHP/MySQL programming for websites. But after seeing that presentation, I was just wondering if their were any benifiets over PHP when it comes to ASP.NET 2.0. If so, I noticed that I can't really seem to find any really good tutorials off of google for starting off. Any ideas/comments? Thanks in advance.

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Quote:
Original post by sathenzar
I was just wondering if their were any benifiets over PHP when it comes to ASP.NET 2.0.


There are many differences, and it really depends on your situation.

ASP.NET 2.0
Pros:
* Great development tools
* Lots of professional and corporate support available
* Great development tools
* Works with languages that many programmers are already familiar with
* IDE has full integration with the web server, scripting, SQL Server, stored procedure debugging, and lots of features in the "EnterpriseServices" .NET namespace.
* Did I mention the development tools?
* There are tons of built in web controls, tons of third-party controls, and it's easy to write your own.

Cons:
* Five-digit price range for software before you are done, even more in larger environments, in addition to connection and hardware costs
* Some of the stuff that happens behind your back can be expensive in terms of compute time and bandwidth.

Other concern:
* It's Microsoft. Some people don't like this, others love it.


PHP
Pros:
* No-cost software (except connection and hardware)
* No forced migrations as old versions lose vendor support
* Lots of newsgroups
* You can hire teens to write it, and pay minimum wage
* You have a wide choice of server configurations available
* If you want, you can step into the system all the way to the lowest-level kernel functions.

Cons:
* It's yet another language to learn and support
* There are some good development tools out there, but they are nothing in comparison to the VS IDE.
* Debugging is much more difficult when it crosses lines between the final HTML, CSS, scripting, database connectivity, and stored procedures.

Other concern:
* It's not Microsoft.

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First, just to cover it, you can develop with ASP.NET 1.1/2 and MSSQL for free, assuming you have an IIS server (i.e. XP Pro). You just need to download the .NET framework which includes the command line compiler (you can also download the optimizing compiler for free) and then download MSDN 2000 (SQL Server with 2GB limit, no gui tools, installer uses an ini file instead of gui). In theory you can even develop most of ASP.NET without a compiler, as long as you don't make certain types of user components and don't use code behind files.

To cover question in the title of your post, yes ASP.NET is powerful enough. If you are comparing it to PHP, then it is definitely powerful enough. The thing to really consider however is that they are two different tools. PHP occupies the same space as class ASP. ASP.NET occupies the space of Java Server Pages and other web "application" development environments (PHP and ASP classic are more targeted at individual pages, making development harder to scale without creating a twisted mess).

If you are just doing amateur stuff (i.e. MySQL powered site), then ASP.NET might be too big of a tool for the job - like bringing in a backhoe to plant some flowers in your backyard. On the other hand if you are working on an entire park, PHP is going to start feeling like a hand shovel.

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Quote:
Original post by Michalson
First, just to cover it, you can develop with ASP.NET 1.1/2 and MSSQL for free, assuming you have an IIS server (i.e. XP Pro). You just need to download the .NET framework which includes the command line compiler (you can also download the optimizing compiler for free) and then download MSDN 2000 (SQL Server with 2GB limit, no gui tools, installer uses an ini file instead of gui). In theory you can even develop most of ASP.NET without a compiler, as long as you don't make certain types of user components and don't use code behind files.


Forgot about that. [grin] That brings the total cost down to the cost of an OS with IIS server.

Of course, that means you don't get the great development tools, the integrated debugger, and difficulty with custom controls. Not spending the money takes away most of the benefits.

I do like your hand-shovel vs backhoe comparison. It's quite accurate IMO. You can get hand-shovels for practically nothing, but I assume our company could buy a few backhoes with the money we spend on MS Volume Licensing.

frob.

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lol...ok, well I guess that puts PHP in perspective. Yes, I'm building apps in PHP at the moment that are big commercial projects, I was just noticing it seemed that ASP.NET 2.0 got the job done 100 times faster with more stability in some cases. So I was just seeing what people thought on the subject. Thanks again, any other replies are welcome.

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I would've thought under most circumstances really good knowledge of SQL and your database system would be more important than PHP/ASP. Wikipedia is PHP/MySQL though so I wouldn't say they were for small projects only.

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yea, I have been programming PHP/MySQL for about 3 years now. I still agree that it takes a lot longer to make applications from scratch...but o well nothing is perfect...:)

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ASP.NET implements an event model for web pages, which makes building complex forms much easier. It also enables you to use neat Java knock-off tools like NHibernate.

Have a look at Ruby on Rails as well. They have video and text tutorials.

Quote:
Debugging is much more difficult when it crosses lines between the final HTML, CSS, scripting, database connectivity, and stored procedures.
Huh?

Quote:
and then download MSDN 2000 (SQL Server with 2GB limit, no gui tools, installer uses an ini file instead of gui).
Or keep using MySQL and its free GUI tools.

Quote:
PHP and ASP classic are more targeted at individual pages, making development harder to scale without creating a twisted mess

If you use good development practices, it's not that hard to make PHP projects that scale. The problem is that PHP and ASP attract the lowest common denominator, so examples of good code are few and far between.

Quote:
If you are just doing amateur stuff (i.e. MySQL powered site)
Heh.

[Edited by - igni ferroque on October 6, 2005 10:37:20 PM]

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To extend Michalson's point, ASP.NET development can also be done with Apache and mod_mono. Mono is not as mature as Microsoft's equivalents, but it is wholly free and _does_ work (I'm using it for my personal site). Additionally it can be run on Linux or most other free OSes. Hence, the cost required for software licenses can be as little as nothing. :-) Just my two cents on the issue.

-bodisiw

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It's really dependent on whether you *like* the ASPNET "Page is view and controller" model.

It's a sort of semi-templated driven system where the view (the ASPNET page) still contains a lot of logic (like things like datagrids).

You'd normally put most of your code in the "Codebehind" class for each page (or other classes you'd created) - but it will still be heavily intertwined with the ASPNET stuff.

Whether a purely templated model with no logic in the template is better, is entirely a matter of opinion.

In general the .NET libraries are excellent and C# is a good language. All the problems I've had is with some of the ASPNET components not doing what I wanted, and stuff like DataGrid, Repeater, DataSets etc.

---

I use Smarty in PHP, as well as using ASPNET and "Classic" ASP. "Classic ASP" is obviously massively inferior, lacking a number of error handling / debug features. It also cannot be run independently from the web server and it's difficult to reuse code.

Whether "Ruby on rails" or something is a good way of doing things - I've not really had a look it it yet.

Mark

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