Asp.Net Best Practices for Novice Developers

Why ASP .Net? A web developer understands the importance of a framework. Framework is something that helps in quick development process without compromising on quality of the end product. In fact, frameworks provide enough scope for the developer to take the advantage of modern features and industry standard security features in their application. Well ASP .Net is a web framework from Microsoft for .net developers. We all know the quality that Microsoft provides to the industry through its various outstanding products from its inception. ASP .Net is yet another wing to Microsoft’s success list. It provides adequate scope to ASP .Net developer in developing enterprising standard web applications in less time and effort. Today we will discuss few must know best practices of ASP .Net that can help any web developer in developing brilliant web application.

asp.net developers, outsource ASP.Net DevelopmentNaming convention is the first thing to consider: The best practices list starts with naming convention. This is the most important and basic thing that a developer must adopt. It makes him developing professional codes on ASP .Net platform. An ASP .Net developer must use an uniform naming convention for different components of a web programme like data type, class name, variable name, method name etc. He must prepare a document for the same so that he can follow it throughout the development process. Moreover when a new developer is projected to the development process, he can write the same professional codes on the IDE. It will definitely help in preparing well readable and maintainable code.

Proper Validation check: After naming convention, validation comes to the list. While an ASP .Net developer dealing with a web development project he usually finds many forms and fields in the application. These fields should be properly validated by the developer so that we can enter only correct data to the data base from the user interface. For example if there is a field for mobile number then we must check for only numeric value in the field. Along with that we should also check the number of numeric data entered into the field. Moreover we should also validate the field in backend programming. This is because to avoid any unethical access from hackers who can disable java script on the frontend.

Use of cache for performance: An ASP .Net developer should be aware of cache management. Cache memory is something that keeps some important user data like session value and few other important data so that the user can be given an improved user experience. On the other hand it also helps in avoiding unnecessary communication with the server making the application optimised.

Top level Security standards to be adopted: Security matters a lot in today’s life. We must ensure that our user is under a secure environment and his data can’t be accessed by anyone else. For the same ASP .Net developers can use 128 bit encryption technology for secure database connection. Moreover they can also implement multi tier security measures in the application for better security.

Adopt master page concept for professional look n feel: This is a new generation concept and we should adopt it. Through master page, a web application can get a uniform and professional look throughout the pages i.e., all the pages look similar and professional to the end user.

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ASP.NET Basics That Programmers Should Not Avoid

History of ASP .Net: Microsoft is the biggest brand of IT industry till date. It has an undisputed track record for than two decades, which shows its talent and potential to understand the demand of users and its effort and passion for the rest of the world. When Windows OS get born, the industry was astonished!! Microsoft has always given shocks to the industry with its outstanding products in a mesmerizing manner. ASP .Net is one such piece. It is a framework for its .Net scripting language!! It is extremely popular in the industry with special reference to web industry and web developers. Let us have a quick look over few important fundamental materials that a web developer must learn to be a good ASP .Net developer.

asp.net development, dot net application development services, expert asp.net developersHave a strong grasp on HTML: HTML is the core of any web application. It is the content that render on the web page and visible to the end user. So, a ASP .Net developer must learn HTML in depth. Web page starts with HTML tag “<HTML>” and it follows other tags. There are many tricky tags in HTML which a web developer or ASP dot Net developer must learn before he jumps into this challenging career. Well, the modern HTML5 is a big advantage for the developer if he wants to sustain in the industry with dignity.

Knowledge of backend programming is must: Back end programming is something which is nothing but the core logic of the application. It is usually written in programming languages like C# in case of ASP .Net. So an ASP .Net developer must have a strong knowledge on back end programming. This will determine the efficiency of any application so, it is must.

Validation is an important feature of any web app: In any web application, we find many web forms in different shapes and forms. These forms must be validated properly. For the same the ASP .Net web developer should take the help of JavaScript in frontend and C# in backend. Why both front end and backend? Well, a hacker can hack your application if it is not properly validated. He can put some nonsense data into your database, which will cause crash in latter period. So, a web developer must validate all the web form data both in frontend and back end programming.

Master page is a wonderful concept: Master page is a page which provides a uniform look and feel to any web application. This improves the professional characteristic of any web application. So, it is getting tremendous popularity among the ASP .Net developers in recent period. So, you must learn this to achieve professional web design for your app.

Cache management and Session is needed: Optimization has always its importance in the industry and this can be achieved through proper use of Cache. So, as a web developer, you must learn to implement cache and make your application more efficient than before. Session is a important concept in web development process. It ensures that privacy is maintained properly. So, you must integrate session in your web app. To get maximum benefits of .Net, you may consider hiring services of a custom asp.net development company.

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Difference between Visual Basic .Net and Visual C# .Net

There are 2 primary languages that are used in the .NET framework – Visual Basic .NET and C# .NET. Syntactically these are completely different from each other and have different history as well. The C# is based on the C programming language that was developed by Dennis Ritchie. It has since then evolved to C++ and then later to C#. However, though they are syntactically different, both were developed by Microsoft to be a part of .NET framework development platform. Both these languages are developed, managed and supported by a single management team at Microsoft. The IL or intermediate language in which they are compiled is the same. If one avoids the VB Compatibility libraries, then every command in Visual Basic has an equivalent one in C#. Another similarity between these two is that for extending their functionality both the languages refer to the same Base Classes available with ASP.NET framework. Barring a few exceptions, any program written in either of the languages can be injected on a simple syntax converter for translation.

custom .net development company, asp.net development, expert dot net developersSo how do these differ from each other inspite of such similarities? Well, here are a few points on which these languages completely vary from one another:

Case Sensitivity: In VB framework, the identifier names are not case sensitive but those in C sharp are. While writing a code the developers may face a problem due to this but when debugging an existing program there are no issues.

Development Environment: Visual Studio plays an important role here in producing differences between the two, though minor in nature. There are certain additional features present in Visual Basic .NET, like, default namespace, option for hidden files, etc. In addition to this the background compilation feature is available for VB. Due to this the Error List panel is synchronized. But in C Sharp the error list panel can only be updated when the solution is rebuilt. This becomes increasingly difficult as there is the need for frequently rebuilding the solution.

Variables – Declaration and Assignment: Variables are declared in Visual Basic.NET prior to the data type. On the other hand, in C# it precedes the data type.

Dealing with Unmanaged Code: Unmanaged codes can be written freely on C#. While writing these codes the developers can operate and declare on pointers or opt for conversions between the kinds of integral and pointers. This is quite similar to writing Visual C code. In the other language writing unmanaged code is not allowed.

Termination of Statement: By the end of the line statements are terminated in VB.NET. Colon (:) is used to accommodate multiple statements in a single line. Apart from this, the line continuation (_) is used if the programmers want to span the statement several lines. For C#.NET semicolon (;) terminates the statement.

Passing Parameter: ByVal is used by Visual Basic dot NET for passing parameters by value and the ByRef for passing parameters by reference. This language can also force the parameters to pass by value irrespective of the fact how they were declared. Optional parameters are also included here which are clearly missing in C#. There are no options to pass reference types by value. In this case the unmanaged codes prove helpful as they can convert from pointer to pointer.

Statement Blocks: These are not used in Visual Basic dot NET. Rather particular keywords with special terminating statement are put to use. The other language uses braces ({}) to restrict a statement block. In case, these are not used, it is considered to be a single statement.

Checking Overflow: For checking overflow there is a project level setting in VB. This setting can be turned on or off at the project level only. On the contrary, the C sharp can run on both checked and unchecked context.

Late Binding: This can be applied to both the languages through reflection. But this process is easier in VB than C#.

The choice of language in building solutions is completely a personal preference. Since both of them use the same core platform, they are quite powerful. To get maximum benefits of .Net, you may consider hiring services of a custom .net development company.

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ASP DotNET Web Forms Versus ASP DotNET MVC

In case you have considerable experience in ASP.NET development, much of the knowledge and expertise would come handy during the creation of Model View Controller application. Since MVC is a component of the .NET framework, most of the interfaces, class and namespaces can be utilized in these applications. Here we will discuss the positive aspects of both Web Forms as well as MVC models.

An overview of web forms

asp.net application development, expert .net developers, .net web developmentWeb forms were introduced to solve great many problems for web developers through creation of abstraction of a higher level over stateless web as well as simulated stateful model. Concepts such as ViewState, which helps in maintenance of control values at the time of postbacks, along with self postback, which facilitates posting of form data within same page, were introduced. The striking aspect is that not a single line of code needs to be written. The Visual Basic model is brought back into web by Microsoft. Let us examine the major strengths:

1. Event Model: An event-oriented programming style is supported which is similar to Windows applications. A number of events are available. Moreover, there are server controls to render support to these.

2. State Management: The intricacy of managing state is reduced through the use of server-based controls and view state.

3. Page-oriented architecture: Here we have an architecture which merges a page having declarative markup (in fact an .aspx file) along with a code-behind file which includes functionality. This structure makes room for convenient creation of pages which implement common tasks like markup rendering from server code and responding to user gestures.

4. Extensive set of controls: A plethora of server controls as well as components that help in the reduction of development time are provided by the .NET web development community.

A glance at MVC

ASP.NET MVC is one of Microsoft’s web application framework developed with separation of concerns as well as testability in mind. It is designed on CLR and entirely revolves around MVC architecture. There is no support for ViewState or server controls. The strengths are as follows:

I. Separation of concerns: A “separation of concerns” is enforced, which facilitates the division of the application into loosely-bound and discrete parts, incorporating the view, model and controller components of the application. In this way, testing and maintenance of MVC applications becomes more convenient.

II. Enhanced control for rendered HTML: Significant boost of control for rendered HTML is realized.

III. Test-oriented development: With MVC, it is easier to go for test driven development. An MVC project as well as its test project can be created simultaneously. Following this, unit tests can be designed with respect to every action method within the application, and they can be run without the need to invoke the web application’s total request cycle.

ASP.NET framework aspects in sync with MVC

MVC and web forms might appear to be distinct technologies. However, both these technologies are developed across the ASP.NET framework. As a result, most features utilized in the development of web forms are also available for Model View Controller application design. This incorporates features like authentication, membership, configuration and roles, which work in an identical manner in both categories of apps. Most of the interfaces, classes and namespaces can be utilized in an MVC app.

ASP.NET framework aspects that are not in line with MVC

Since in case of Model View Controller, state information is not maintained by utilization of view state, other ways need to be sought for state information management, if the same is required. In addition to this, server controls relying on postback and viewstate would not operate as designed for an MVC application. So, controls like Repeater, GridView as well as DataList controls should not be used. In case of a Web Forms page, the life cycle is complex, incorporating a number of events. Model View Controller application does not render support to such events since the interactions between the view, model and controller utilize distinct life-cycle models.

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Top Advantages of building web applications using MVC framework

MVC stands for Model View Controller – this is a model used for software development purposes. It is popular among various major programming languages today such as Java, PHP, ASP.NET etc. It has a pattern followed by many of the developers for customizing World Wide Web applications at ease. Model holds the business rules, functions and logic. View represents data structure or a chart or a diagram. Controller controls the model and the view.

.net application development, asp.net development, certified .net developersToday it is being used as the powerful framework for building web applications using MVC pattern. The Model represents the application core, whereas the View displays the data and the Controller handles the input. The MVC separation helps one to manage complex applications, because one can focus on one aspect at a time. For example, one can focus on the view without depending on the business logic and thus makes it simpler and easier to test a web application. Here both the view and the controller depend on the model; the model depends on neither the view nor the controller. This is one the main advantages of the separation. Hence this allows the model to be built and tested independently of the visual presentation. The separation between the view and the controller is secondary in many client applications and many user interface frameworks implement the roles as one object as one package, thus no interference in each of the module.

In web applications, on the other hand, the separation between view (the browser) and controller (the server-side components handling the HTTP request) is very well defined. The MVC separation also simplifies team development. Different programmers can work on the business logic, view and the controller logic parallel thus without interfering in each other’s work.

Introduction of MVC in ASP.Net

In ASP.Net, there was a need to change the ASP.NET development pattern because working with Webforms became a difficult task, When MVC did come, it is now instrumental in meeting different business demands and making developer work easier. Let us understand what were the main disadvantages of Webforms in ASP.NET.

  1. Web forms by nature hide all the nature of HTTP.
  2. The user has no more control on the HTML markup generated by Web forms.
  3. There is no separation of Concerns in web forms. Presentation and business logic are tightly coupled in web form. For example, ASPX and ASPX.VB (or) ASPX.CS files are tightly coupled or depend one another. The Design (Presentation Logic) and Code Logic cannot be separated.

With each new version, MVC is getting more and more productive and helping develop richer and far more effective solutions.

Top Advantages of building web applications using MVC framework

MVC Framework is built upon a proven MVC design-pattern. ASP.NET has one of the major defects where it uses HTML size of controls and view state. View state stores all the HTML rendered data and the final HTML gets too large. If there is a slow internet connection, the load time is delayed. This has been taken care in MVC framework. MVC framework does not deal with view state concept. With MVC and JQuery integration makes it even better to write code that runs in the browser and takes away load from the server. Thus loading application quickly saving lot of development time. It also supports multiple views and unit testing as a part of Visual Studio 2008 and 2010. The MVC architecture isolates the domain logic from the user interface, allowing for quicker, more controlled development. MVC is under continued enhancements and getting finer day by day, providing more benefits with each new version.

MVC manages complexity because of its separated nature of model-view-controller makes it easier to manage the complexity of large applications and keep it well organized. Programmers are able to focus on one aspect of execution at a time, such as concentrating on the view without depending on the business logic or vice-versa. Some functions and classes of MVC can even be auto-created to save time. With MVC, it is faster test-driven development. Testing applications get easier than it is to test form-based ASP.NET web applications. This is because the separation of application tasks are all defined differently so they add no more complexity. Programmers can test their development work by writing a failing automated test case to define a desired improvement then evaluating the new code.

Because of the flexible coupling of the MVC architecture, rapid and parallel development is possible. It is much easier for more than one developer can code at the same time on the application. If one programmer is working on the view, another can work on the controller logic and the other on the business logic in the model, the application is capable enough to be completed three times faster. With model-view-controller, development gets quicker and independent, thus saving development time. The MVC framework gives full control over the behavior of their application because MVC does not use a view state or server-based forms. Since the controller uses different pieces of the model and view to create a request, many of these parts can be reused in other MVC applications. These reusable building blocks are chosen by the controller to handle specific processing and display needs.

The model-view-controller architecture also integrates with the JavaScript Framework. This means, MVC applications can be made to work with applications outside web pages, such as PDF documents, site-specific browsers, and desktop widgets. It also supports asynchronous calls to such scripts which results to faster loading.

MVC gives the ability to control the application. Rather than using Viewstate or Postback events to store the state of server controls on the page and to manage invocation of server side events, MVC instead uses different view engines to generate the markup that streams back to the browser client. The advantage here is that one can easily produce more standard markup and have greater control over what will be rendered to the client.

As a way to solve developers issues on time, everyone have been turning to MVC frameworks which promise increased productivity and maintainable code. Thus gaining more momentum in business growth.

We provide .net application development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified .net developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

4 Ways to Enhance Security of DotNET Web applications

With more and more businesses going online, website development has become complex and complement. Nowadays, developers frequently look for fresh and innovative ideas to optimize the look and feel of web application. At the same time, they also need to ensure that the website is high performing, scalable and secure. As a rapid web application development framework, Microsoft Dot Net is widely used by programmers across the world to build websites, web application and web services.

asp.net development, asp.net developers, .net application developmentThe framework also comes with several features and tools that enable programmers to optimize the performance of the website without writing longer lines of code. Also, Microsoft regularly update Dot Net framework with advanced authentication configuration and security features to keep the web application safe and inaccessible. However, each enterprise must consider a number of additional factors to optimize the security of its website. Some of these points can even be incorporated in the initial ASP.NET development plan.

Enhancing the Security of Your Dot Net Web Application

1. Set Least Privileges for the Website: Often the security of a website depends on the specific privileges it has on the local as well as remote computers. So you must configure the ASP.NET process identity properly to avoid potential security threats. It is also important to minimize the practical privileges for users while running the application. At the same time, you need to ensure that the users have no option to run the application as an administrator.

Based on the resources needed by the website, you have to set permissions by defining Access Control Lists (ACLs). In addition to setting all your files as read-only, you must not allow users to access a specific a path. The configuration will ensure that the root of your sever remains inaccessible when the application is running.

2. Identify Each User: Many enterprises allow users to access the web application without providing any credentials. The anonymous access to your application resources will have a huge impact on its security. So you must restrict unauthentic access to the application both on the intranet and web. If the Dot Net application will run on an intranet, you must configure it using Windows integrated security. The configuration will allow users to access the resources using their Windows login credentials. However, you also have option to use the ASP.NET authentication strategies to compel the user to provide login credentials.

3. Eliminate the Impact of Malicious User Input: The Dot Net framework allows programmers to validate the user input using a set of advanced authentication methods. But you must not assume that the user input is safe and harmless. As the malicious users can damage your website by submitting potentially dangerous information, you have to consider several ways to eliminate the impact of malicious user input. The HTML tags can also be used to submit scripts. So you must filter user input to keep the ASP.Net web pages secure.

Also, you can encode the HTML before displaying the unfiltered user input convert the potentially malicious script into display strings. At the same time, you need to ensure that the unfiltered user input is not stored in a database. Along with filtering the HTML accepted from users manually, you can clearly explain what information will be accepted by the application. However, you should not create a filter to identify and remove the malicious input, as it is difficult to identify the user input that is malicious and harmful.

4. Keep Your Databases Secure: The security of a web application is directly related to the way your store and access data. So you must consider optimizing the security of your databases to keep the Dot Net web application secure. Each database comes with inherent security features. You must avail the feature to restrict the access to database resources according to the requirements of the application. Further, you enable integrated security feature of your website to ensure that the users can access the database only by using Windows-authenticated users.

Many security experts consider the integrated security feature to be more effective than login credential based access. If you want to allow anonymous access to the application, it is a good idea to create a single user that has limited permission to run SQL queries. Instead of processing user input by concatenating strings to create SQL statements, you can consider creating a parameterized query. The customized SQL query will receive user input, and use the information as parameter values.

Microsoft has also recommended several best practices to fix the potential security flaws. At the same time, an enterprise must avail the security features provided by the web server to deploy the website in a secure environment.

We provide .net application development services. If you would like to talk to one of our certified asp.net developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

ASP Dot Net – The Forthcoming Technological Revolution

A gradual increase is noted in the number of local and small businesses going online. With more and more businesses having a virtual presence, it has become essential for developers to explore fresh ideas to make their clients’ websites or web applications unique. Some developers explore innovative ways to boost the user experience, whereas others rely on the web application development frameworks make their websites powerful and popular. In comparison to conventional web application development frameworks, ASP.Net is popular among programmers across the world due to its powerful yet easy-to-use features and functionalities.

asp.net application development, hire asp.net developers, .net development servicesMicrosoft further upgrades ASP.Net regularly with advanced features to meet the latest trends in web development. The version 4.5 of the web development framework comes with a set of features that make it easier for programmers to build dynamic and interactive application that run on the internet. At the same time, a developer can use Microsoft Visual Studio 2013 to create the application without writing longer lines of code. Along with simplifying the web application development process, the latest version of technology also prepares programmers for the upcoming technological revolution.

Key ASP.Net Features to Meet the Latest Web Development Trends

1. Support for HTML5 WebSockets: The user experience of a web application hugely depends on the smooth communication between the web server and the client. Often programmers have to explore options to facilitate duplex or two-way communication between the web server and the client browser. HTML5 WebSocket is used widely as a protocol to perform such duplex communication. The upgraded versions of ASP.Net and IIS support the WebSocket protocol. However, the WebSocket protocol must be enabled in IIS 8.0 before using the features in application. Once the protocol is enabled in IIS, the programmer can initiate the client-server communication using IsWebSocketRequest property and AcceptWebSocketRequest() method.

2. Option to Bundle and Minify Files: Often users turn away from web applications that are slow. So web application developers look for efficient ways to control the number of requests sent to the server from the web browser, and the time required by the server to respond to each user request. ASP.Net 4.5 comes with a fresh feature that makes it easier for programmers to bundle and minify files neatly. The bundling and minifcation of CSS and JavaScript files will further contribute towards making the website perform faster. But a developer has to specify the URLs to the CSS and JavaScript files to avail this feature. Also, he has to follow specific naming conventions to bundle all these files from a folder, and serve these as a single request. The Bundle class and IBundleTransform interface can be used to customize the process of bundling these files and scripts.

3. Revamped Web Forms: Before the release of the updated version of ASP.Net, many programmers were skeptical about using Web Forms on their applications. Microsoft has integrated the MVC design with Web Forms to make it easier for developers to separate business logic and design. With the model binding feature, a programmer can bind a specific value in the client application to a model on the web server. The binding will further make validation on the server more efficient. In ASP.Net 4.5, a developer also has options to add ModelType property to the data controls. The new property enables him to specify the type of object that will be bound to the control. At the same time, the query can also be manipulated through the IQueryable object to avail designing features like sorting and paging. Also, the upgraded version of ASP.Net supports HTML5.

4. Creating Asynchronous HTTP Handlers: In comparison to traditional HTTP handlers, asynchronous HTTP handlers are more effective in supporting asynchronous processing of user requests. The older versions of the asp.net application development framework allowed you to create HTTP handlers. But ASP.Net 4.5 makes it easier for you to create asynchronous HTTP handlers. You also have option to use async/await keywords and Tasks to boost the overall performance of your web application. You can use the IHttpAsyncHandler interface to create the handlers. But the interface requires you to write BeginProcessRequest() and EndProcessRequest() methods to avail the advantages of asynchronous HTTP handlers.

Microsoft has further enhanced the efficiency of ASP.Net by providing robust support to a variety of open source technologies. A developer now has option to build robust web applications using JavaScript and HTML5. The combination of Microsoft .Net framework and other widely used open source technologies will prepare ASP.Net for the forthcoming technological revolution.

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