Why use ASP .net for building your website
Not Just for Business Applications: Why You Should Choose ASP.NET for Your Next Website
ASP.NET is a platform that is backed by the power of Microsoft that can use any .NET-supported language, and was created to provide developers with an easy scripting tool to create web apps and pages. It is a successor to ASP (Active Server Pages), which was pioneered by Microsoft in the mid-90s. The early domination of the web browser marketby Internet Explorer helped increase the popularity of ASP.NET. Unlikely PHP, which is a true programming language, ASP.NET is a web framework – actual programming on ASP.NET is generally done in C#, or much more rarely in VB.NET. While ASP.NET is often utilized for building websites, it also has a life outside web programming with a great deal of business applications, gaming and mobile programming; unlike “competitor” PHP, which is used almost exclusively for web.
One of the key benefits of utilizing ASP.NET to build your website is that if your organization is a .NET shop overall, then it will be much easier to tie into your existing business applications that are already built within this platform paradigm. There is also an immense network of support for ASP.NET – from bloggers to fellow developers to gurus who are willing to answer questions for free and help with code snippets. This definitely isn’t a platform that will leave you feeling like you’re alone on a deserted island – the community is alive, efficient, and highly-structured.
Consider that one of the most-used websites ever was built on an ASP.NET platform: MySpace. While MySpace was edged out by PHP-built Facebook, it is still a massive site for artists and musicians and had to manage unbelievable amounts of content and go through multiple upgrades throughout its life.
While you may hear the name “Microsoft” and think “expensive”, this isn’t necessarily the case. Microsoft is known for never giving anything away for free but for whatever reason they have made an exception with ASP.NET – you can get everything you need to develop ASP.NET applications without spending a dime. If you’re a beginner with ASP.NET, Microsoft offers WebMatrix, a dev environment that is created just for beginners with a built-in web server (IIS Express) as well as a database engine (SQL Compact Edition), plus deployment tools to get your site to a remote host. Students should check out the DreamSpark program to receive free copies of Visual Studio Pro, Windows Server Oss, and Expression Studio.
The Express editions of Visual Studio are free for more advanced users, although the functionality is trimmed down from the full Visual Studio – it has a built-in web server but no database engine. However, Microsoft has that covered, too, with their SQL Server Express that can be used for dev and even some deployment situations. Anything you develop with the Visual Web Developer Express (VWD) can be opened in the full version, should you decide to purchase it.
There are some assumptions that you may have heard about ASP.NET website development: that it’s only for large enterprise-class websites, that it’s a closed environment, that it’s Windows only, that it’s static instead of dynamic (not necessarily a bad thing!), and that it’s a horrid choice for small, personal websites. While Microsoft as an organization definitely has an enterprise mentality, ASP.NET is surprisingly suitable even for smaller projects. It’s extensively utilized for Windows Phone, Azure, and other business environments, but the pure simplicity of the platform leads it to be an excellent choice for smaller projects that don’t need to be complex or over-engineered, especially with the WebMatrix development option for beginners.
While some may feel that ASP.NET is overkill for very small business websites, the platform is quite flexible, has excellent scalability and community support, and easily ties in with .NET business applications – which can add long-term value to your website in a way that other platforms may not support.