ASP.NET stands for Active Server Pages .NET and is developed by Microsoft. ASP.NET is used to create web pages and web technologies and is an integral part of Microsoft’s .NET framework vision. As a member of the .NET framework, ASP.NET is a very valuable tool for programmers and developers as it allows them to build dynamic, rich web sites and web applications using compiled languages like VB and C#.
ASP.NET is not limited to script languages, it allows you to make use of .NET languages like C#, J#, VB, etc. It allows developers to build very compelling applications by making use of Visual Studio, the development tool provided by Microsoft. ASP.NET is purely server-side technology. It is built on a common language runtime that can be used on any Windows server to host powerful ASP.NET web sites and technologies.
In the early days of the Web i.e. before the release of Internet Information Services (IIS) in 1997, the contents of web pages were largely static. These web pages needed to be constantly, and manually, modified. There was an urgent need to create web sites that were dynamic and would update automatically.
Microsoft’s Active Server Pages (ASP) was brought to the market to meet this need. ASP executed on the server side, with its output sent to the user’s web browser, thus allowing the server to generate dynamic web pages based on the actions of the user.
These server-side technologies are important contributions to the development of the Web. Amazon.com, eBay.com, and many other popular web sites use ASP.NET as the framework for their site; without ASP.NET it would not be possible.
12 important advantages ASP.NET offers over other Web development models:
1. ASP.NET drastically reduces the amount of code required to build large applications.
2. With built-in Windows authentication and per-application configuration, your applications are safe and secured.
3. It provides better performance by taking advantage of early binding, just-in-time compilation, native optimization, and caching services right out of the box.
4. The ASP.NET framework is complemented by a rich toolbox and designer in the Visual Studio integrated development environment. WYSIWYG editing, drag-and-drop server controls, and automatic deployment are just a few of the features this powerful tool provides.
5. Provides simplicity as ASP.NET makes it easy to perform common tasks, from simple form submission and client authentication to deployment and site configuration.
6. The source code and HTML are together therefore ASP.NET pages are easy to maintain and write. Also the source code is executed on the server. This provides a lot of power and flexibility to the web pages.
7. All the processes are closely monitored and managed by the ASP.NET runtime, so that if process is dead, a new process can be created in its place, which helps keep your application constantly available to handle requests.
8. It is purely server-side technology so, ASP.NET code executes on the server before it is sent to the browser.
9. Being language-independent, it allows you to choose the language that best applies to your application or partition your application across many languages.
10. ASP.NET makes for easy deployment. There is no need to register components because the configuration information is built-in.
11. The Web server continuously monitors the pages, components and applications running on it. If it notices any memory leaks, infinite loops, other illegal activities, it immediately destroys those activities and restarts itself.
12. Easily works with ADO.NET using data-binding and page formatting features. It is an application which runs faster and counters large volumes of users without having performance problems
In short ASP.NET, the next generation version of Microsoft’s ASP, is a programming framework used to create enterprise-class web sites, web applications, and technologies. ASP.NET developed applications are accessible on a global basis leading to efficient information management. Whether you are building a small business web site or a large corporate web application distributed across multiple networks, ASP.NET will provide you all the features you could possibly need…and at an affordable cost.