Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Benefits of ASP.NET

ASP.NET provides many truly impressive benefits over classic ASP, mainly because it is built into the managed environment of the .NET Framework. ASP.NET applications are compiled, rather than interpreted, and they benefit from a sophisticated Class Framework that provides a powerful, extensible application programming interface (API).

At the risk of rehashing what others have already said, the benefits of ASP.NET are as follows:
  • ASP.NET applications are developed using compiled code and can be written using any .NET-compliant language, including VB .NET, C# .NET, and J# .NET. ASP.NET is built into the .NET Class Framework, so it benefits from an extensive API as well as all the benefits of the .NET managed environment, including type safety, multilanguage support, optimized memory management, and a just-in-time (JIT) compilation model that optimizes the availability and performance of the application at runtime.
  • ASP.NET provides an extensible architecture that you can easily customize. For example, every Web form can be programmatically accessed using the Page handler object. This object not only encapsulates the Web form, but it also provides direct access to the context objects, including the HttpRequest, HttpApplication, and HttpSessionState objects.
  • The ASP.NET runtime engine architecture is also designed for optimal performance and extensibility. The runtime engine executes in a separate process from Internet Information Server (IIS), and it delegates HTTP requests across a range of handler classes. These classes can be customized or even dropped from an application if they do not provide any benefit. Custom HTTP handlers process HTTP requests at the level of the ASP.NET runtime engine. You can write custom HTTP handlers using a greatly simplified API that avoids the complexity of traditional ISAPI modules.
  • ASP.NET provides several ways to cache page content, including full-page caching and partial-page caching (fragment caching). In addition, ASP.NET provides a Cache API for even more granular control over cached content.
  • ASP.NET provides sophisticated debugging and tracing abilities that make application troubleshooting easier than before. The .NET-compliant languages provide structured error handling and a large set of detailed exception classes. Errors will still occur in ASP.NET, of course, but you now benefit from more detailed exception reporting than when using classic ASP.
  • ASP.NET provides several methods for authenticating clients, including Windows authentication, Forms-based authentication, Passport-based authentication, and standard IIS authentication (impersonation).

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