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Friday, August 18, 2006

ASP.NET Development Environment 

ASP.NET Development Environment 

Most of the programming languages with which we work require a development environment to code, test and run the programs. You may purchase a copy of that software at your local computer store and work with it. With ASP.NET things are different. ASP.NET is a development technology that is built into the .NET Framework. You can create ASP.NET applications with a simple editor like a notepad. If you prefer to work in a development environment then you have many to choose from. Visual Studio .NET (should purchase) is one development environment from Microsoft. Another development environment from Microsoft which is prefered by many developers is Microsoft Web Matrix. The best thing about ASP.NET Web Matrix is it's free (available as a 1.4 MB free download) and provides most of the features Visual Studio .NET provides.

Setting Up the Development Environment

As you already know, ASP.NET is based on the CLR, class libraries and other tools which are integrated into the .NET Framework. To develop and run a ASP.NET application you need to have the .NET Framework installed on your machine. .NET Framework comes pre installed with Operating Systems like Windows 2003 Server and Windows XP. For other operating systems (Windows 2000, 98, Me, NT 4.0) you need to instal the .NET Framework manually. You can install .NET Framework manually in two ways: .NET Framework SDK or VS .NET.

Installing the .NET Framework with SDK is simple. Download .NET Framework from and
double-click setup file and follow the instructions. Installing .NET Framework with Visual Studio .NET is simple too. When you install Visual Studio .NET (set of five cd's) you will be prompted to insert the disk that contains the .NET Framework.


To develop a Web Application you need IIS (Internet Information Server) on your machine. IIS comes pre installed in Operating Systems like Windows 2000, XP and 2003. You need to configure IIS to run ASP.NET Web applications. You should configure IIS prior to the installation of Visual Studio .NET software on your machine to avoid errors. In most cases configuring IIS after the installation of VS .NET will result in many errors and unexpected behaviour by the application.

By default, IIS creates a folder on the server's hard drive with the name Inetpub. The Inetpub folder contains a subfolder called wwwroot. The wwwroot folder is the root for the Web site. All the ASP.NET applications you develop using VS .NET are saved in this wwwroot folder.

Web Hosting

You also can test and run your applications on a server owned by hosting providers. The host will give you details you need to know to upload files onto his server, test those files, etc. Web Hosting providers charge some amount for providing service. There are some hosting providers who provide some space for a certain period of time on their servers for ASP.NET developers to test their applications free of charge. You can find about them on the resources page of this site.

Visual Studio .NET

Visual Studio .NET consists of five cd's. Please follow the guide lines on installing the software.

ASP.NET Web Matrix

To use Web Matrix you need to download Web Matrix software which is a small 1.4 MB file and run the installation. To use Web Matrix you should have the .NET Framework installed on your machine. Developers who decide to code their applications using ASP .NET Web matrix need not worry about IIS. Web Matrix server comes with it's own built-in server that helps you to test and run your applications.


To develop ASP.NET database applications you need to install SQL Server 2000 or higher or Oracle depending on the database you wish to use. Use of SQL Server with ASP.NET is recommended as it's said that SQL Connections are 70% faster than OLEDB Connections. Also, performance improves dramatically when you use SQL Server with ASP.NET.

(Via: ASP.NET Development Environment )

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