This book is for anyone who wants to learn how to build rich and
interactive web sites that run on the Microsoft platform. With the
knowledge you gain from this book, you create a great foundation to
build any type of web site, ranging from simple hobby-related web
sites to sites you may be creating for commercial purposes.
Anyone new to web programming should be able to follow along
because no prior background in web development is assumed although
it helps if you do have a basic understanding of HTML and the web
in general. The book starts at the very beginning of web
development by showing you how to obtain and install Visual Web
Developer. The chapters that follow gradually introduce you to new
technologies, building on top of the knowledge gained in the
Do you have a strong preference for Visual Basic over C# or the
other way around? Or do you think both languages are equally cool?
Or maybe you haven't made up your mind yet and want to learn both
languages? Either way, you'll like this book because all
code examples are presented in both languages!
Even if you have some experience with prior versions of ASP.NET,
you may gain a lot from this book. Although many concepts from
previous versions are brought forward into ASP.NET 4, you'll
discover there's a lot of new stuff to be found in this book,
including an introduction to the ADO.NET Entity Framework, the
inclusion of jQuery, ASP.NET AJAX, the many changes to the ASP.NET
4 Framework, and much more.
This book teaches you how to create a feature-rich, data-driven,
and interactive web site called Planet Wrox. Although this is quite
a mouthful, you'll find that with Visual Web Developer 2010,
developing such a web site isn't as hard as it seems. You'll see
the entire process of building a web site, from installing Visual
Web Developer 2010 in Chapter 1 all the way up to putting your web
application on a live server in Chapter 19. The book is divided
into 19 chapters, each dealing with a specific subject.
Chapter 1, “Getting Started with ASP.NET 4”
shows you how to obtain and install Visual Web Developer 2010.
You'll get instructions for downloading and installing the free
edition of Visual Web Developer 2010, called the Express edition.
You are also introduced to HTML, the language behind every web
page. The chapter closes with an overview of the customization
options that Visual Web Developer gives you.
Chapter 2, “Building an ASP.NET Web Site”
shows you how to create a new web site and how to add new elements
like pages to it. Besides learning how to create a well-structured
site, you also see how to use the numerous tools in Visual Web
Developer to create HTML and ASP.NET pages.
Chapter 3, “Designing Your Web Pages.” Visual
Web Developer comes with a host of tools that allow you to create
well-designed and attractive web pages. In this chapter, you see
how to make good use of these tools. Additionally, you learn about
CSS, the language that is used to format web pages.
Chapter 4, “Working with ASP.NET Server
Controls.” ASP.NET Server Controls are one of the most
important concepts in ASP.NET. They allow you to create complex and
feature-rich web sites with very little code. This chapter
introduces you to the large number of server controls that are
available, explains what they are used for, and shows you how to
Chapter 5, “Programming Your ASP.NET Web
Pages.” Although the built-in CSS tools and the ASP.NET
Server Controls can get you a long way in creating web pages, you
are likely to use a programming language to enhance your pages.
This chapter serves as an introduction to programming with a strong
focus on programming web pages. Best of all: all the examples you
see in this chapter (and the rest of the book) are in both Visual
Basic and C#, so you can choose the language you like best.
Chapter 6, “Creating Consistent Looking Web
Sites.” ASP.NET helps you create consistent-looking pages
through the use of master pages, which allow you to define the
global look and feel of a page. Skins and themes help you to
centralize the looks of controls and other visual elements in your
site. You also see how to create a base page that helps to
centralize programming code that you need on all pages in your
Chapter 7, “Navigation.” To help your
visitors find their way around your site, ASP.NET comes with a
number of navigation controls. These controls are used to build the
navigation structure of your site. They can be connected to your
site's central site map that defines the pages in your web site.
You also learn how to programmatically send users from one page to
Chapter 8, “User Controls.” User controls are
reusable page fragments that can be used in multiple web pages. As
such, they are great for repeating content such as menus, banners,
and so on. In this chapter, you learn how to create and use user
controls and enhance them with some programmatic intelligence.
Chapter 9, “Validating User Input.” A large
part of interactivity in your site is defined by the input of your
users. This chapter shows you how to accept, validate, and process
user input using ASP.NET Server Controls. Additionally, you see how
to send e-mail from your ASP.NET web application and how to read
from text files.
Chapter 10, “ASP.NET AJAX.” Microsoft ASP.NET
AJAX allows you to create good-looking, flicker-free web pages that
close the gap between traditional desktop applications and web
applications. In this chapter you learn how to use the built-in
Ajax features to enhance the presence of your web pages, resulting
in a smoother interaction with the web site.
Chapter 11, “jQuery.” jQuery is a popular,
it easier to interact with web pages in the client’s browser.
In this chapter you learn the basics of jQuery and see how to add
rich visual effects and animations to your web pages.
Chapter 12, “Introducing Databases.”
Understanding how to use a database is critical to building web
sites, as most modern web sites require the use of a database.
You’ll learn the basics of SQL, the query language that
allows you to access and alter data in a database. In addition, you
are introduced to the database tools found in Visual Web Developer
that help you create and manage your SQL Server databases.
Chapter 13, “Displaying and Updating Data.”
Building on the knowledge you gained in the previous chapter, this
chapter shows you how to use the ASP.NET data-bound and data source
controls to create a rich interface that enables your users to
interact with the data in the database that these controls
Chapter 14, “LINQ and the ADO.NET Entity
Framework.” LINQ is Microsoft’s solution for
accessing objects, databases, XML, and more. The ADO.NET Entity
Framework (EF) is Microsoft's new technology for database access.
This chapter shows you what LINQ is all about, how to use the
visual EF designer built into Visual Studio, and how to write LINQ
to EF queries to get data in and out of your SQL Server
Chapter 15, “Working with Data—Advanced
Topics.” While earlier chapters focused mostly on the
technical foundations of working with data, this chapter looks at
the same topic from a front-end perspective. You see how to change
the visual appearance of your data through the use of control
styles. You also see how to interact with the data-bound controls
and how to speed up your application by keeping a local copy of
frequently accessed data.
Chapter 16, “Security in Your ASP.NET 4 Web
Site.” Although presented quite late in the book,
security is a first-class, important topic. This chapter shows you
how to make use of the built-in ASP.NET features related to
security. You learn about a number of application services that
facilitate security. You also learn how to let users sign up for an
account on your web site, how to distinguish between anonymous and
logged-on users, and how to manage the users in your system.
Chapter 17, “Personalizing Web Sites.”
Building on the security features introduced in Chapter 16, this
chapter shows you how to create personalized web pages with content
targeted at individual users. You see how to configure and use
ASP.NET Profile that enables you to store personalized data for
known and anonymous visitors.
Chapter 18, “Exception Handling, Debugging, and
Tracing.” In order to understand, improve, and fix the
code you write for your ASP.NET web pages you need good debugging
tools. Visual Web Developer ships with great debugging support that
enables you to diagnose the state of your application at run time,
helping you find and fix problems before your users do.
Chapter 19, “Deploying Your Web Site.” By the
end of the book, you should have a web site that is ready to be
shown to the world. But how exactly do you do that? What are the
things you need to know and understand to put your web site out in
the wild? This chapter gives the answers and provides you with a
good look at configuring different production systems in order to
run your final web site.