July 4th Links: ASP.NET, ASP.NET AJAX, Visual Studio, Silverlight and IIS7

I've fallen behind on my weekly link-listing series - apologies for the delay.


  • ASP.NET RSSToolkit 2.0 Released: One of the cool projects for ASP.NET 2.0 that was released last year was this free RSS Toolkit - which makes consuming and exposing RSS feeds in ASP.NET super easy (you can even databind any ASP.NET control against them).  The team working on the CodePlex project has recently released V2 of the RSSToolkit.  You can learn all about it and download it here.

  • Building a Custom Database Driven Site Map Provider: Scott Mitchell has written a great article on how to implement your own site map provider for ASP.NET that is populated from a database (instead of statically from an XML file).  You can learn more about the ASP.NET 2.0 SiteMap system from this older blog post of mine here.

  • .NET DateTime and Number Format String Cheat Sheet: If you are like me, you might have trouble remembering all of the standard format strings you can pass to the String.Format() method and/or the Eval() databinding method in ASP.NET to generate the appropriate string output from a DateTime or Numeric datatype.  This PDF cheatsheet is a useful one to download and save to quickly look these format strings up.  John has some other really useful .NET PDF cheatsheets he has also created that you might like to download here.

  • Profile Support for ASP.NET Web Application Projects: VS 2005 Web Application Projects can't directly access the strongly-typed ASP.NET "Profile" object that web site projects support.  This VS add-in supports the ability to generate a strongly typed profile class to accomplish this.  You can read this great series of posts to learn more about how to use the ASP.NET 2.0 Profile system.  I have it on my list of tips/tricks posts to-do to cover using this VS add-on as well.

  • ASP.NET Photo Handler: Bertrand has posted a cool photo album HttpHandler for ASP.NET that allows you to easily drop images into a web directory and automatically generate a nice photo album of them (complete with EXIF information, stack sorting icons, etc).  Might be very useful for people enjoying holidays this summer.  Download the code here.

  • BlogEngine.NET: This is a new open source blog engine for ASP.NET that Mads Kristensen has helped start up, and which I've heard a lot of good things about.  You can read about its features here, and download it here.


  • ScriptDoc 1.0 Available: Bertrand Le Roy has published a cool ScriptDoc utility that extracts documentation from JavaScript files and packages it into XML that can be consumed by documentation building tools.  A very useful tool as you start to build up your own JavaScript libraries.

Visual Studio

  • GhostDoc 2.1.1 Released: GhostDoc is a free add-in for Visual Studio 2005 (and now 2008) that automatically generates default XML documentation comments for code you write in C# or VB.  It can automatically re-use existing documentation inherited from base classes or implemented interfaces, or generate initial documentation by deducing comments from the name and type of the member signature. You can learn more about it and download it for free here.


  • Silverlight Tutorials: Michael Schwarz has a great blog where he writes regularly about Silverlight.  This tutorials link points to a bunch of great Silverlight content.


  • IIS 7.0 is now running all of Microsoft.com: One of the things we push at Microsoft is to "dogfood" our products on our high volume sites when they enter the beta cycle.  As of a few weeks ago, all of the web servers running www.microsoft.com are now running on IIS7 and Windows 2008 Server Beta3.  These servers host 500+ virtual roots and 350 ASP.NET applications, and handle 300,000 concurrent connections.  IIS7 is going to be an awesome release.

  • IIS 7.0 on Server Core: Bill Staples blogs about some of the new IIS7 enhancements that appear with the June CTP of Windows 2008 Server.  One of the big features that is now supported is the ability to install IIS7 on "server core" - which is a low footprint installation of Windows 2008 Server that lays down just the minimal footprint needed to boot (meaning no GUI shell).  This lowers the resources required on servers, and even more importantly means that servers don't need to be updated if a patch is released for a component not installed on the server (which lowers the downtime of servers).  ASP.NET and the .NET Framework aren't supported yet in server core configurations - but will be in the future.

Hope this helps,


P.S. I'm out on vacation this week, so please excuse delays on email and comment feedback.


  • You mentioned that the .NET framework will be supported in the future, can you give an estimate when that might be? or if it will even be in the first RTM version of server core 2008.

    BTW this is the first post that says clearly that .NET "WILL" be supported in server core at some point, until now it was only to be considered

  • Hi L Tauber,

    We unfortunately don't have an ETA for the .NET Framework on Server Core support just yet. It is, though, on our roadmap to enable for the future.

    Hope this helps,


  • Hi Scott, thanks for the links, it helps a lot!!

    Scott I know you are a very busy man, but, I'm working right know with a client who likes the show in the apps. So I'm looking for controls for .NET, this is a rich-client app, so I'm reading-testing WPF, but have you any idea of partners from Microsoft that already create controls using WPF?. I'm a not a goot at painting-show.

    Thanks and enjoy your vacations.


  • I HIGHLY recommend SubSonic... it really does a great Code Gen job for web apps and windows apps!

  • Hi Scott, thanks for all the good links. The number of links rae good for a week. :)

  • One stop show for you guide to all the new things happening.

  • I also HIGHLY recommend SubSonic... if you haven't checked it out yet, now is a great time to do so!

  • Excelente Blog
    Muchas Gracias.

  • Great Links. Thanks Have a nice time

  • A great list for Web Developer. One thing I want to know is Subsonic support in medium trust or not?


  • I want to drag n' drop WebPart without postback, so I place WebPartZones into an UpdatePanel. I map System.Web.UI.WebControls.WebParts.WebPartManager and System.Web.UI.WebControls.WebParts.WebPartZone to Microsoft.Web.Preview.UI.Controls.WebParts.WebPartManager and Microsoft.Web.Preview.UI.Controls.WebParts.WebPartZone, but when switch to design mode, an javascript error occurs, and I can't drag webparts. How can I do that?

  • Hi Daniel,

    Here is a good pointer to a presentation that talks about Silverlight development, as well as what is currently in and not in the alpha: http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2007/06/19/building-silverlight-applications-using-net.aspx

    Unfortunately textbox and some of the basic controls aren't there yet - but will show up later this year (along with concepts like layout management and more).

    Hope this helps,


  • Hi Scott;
    Off Topic questions but important to ask:
    a) Will VS2008 beta 2 have design time support for WPF and Silverlight with components?
    b) Will VS2008 RTM have support for database/linq in SilverLight.

    We need to decide whether we should use Silverlight to interact with user for data or use ASP.Net? I hope your answer can help us make the decision?


  • Great article... It gives an excellente overview for people that need yet quick info on what will be next. BTW we've also developed a small blog engine called p.blog, free to be downloaded and which uses your tips/tricks solution on UrlRewriting.

  • Great stuff and work. I hope there will be also more on page size and code elegance in those next releases... Best


  • Hi Scott,
    We are a company in Italy. We make a complete .NET PLM solution for food and beverages industries. The product is so huge that it is entirely written on .NET 1.1. We are on the discussion phase for porting our application to .NET 3.0. While .NET 3.0 lacks the LINQ feature, we are discussing whether to wait for the release of .NET 3.5. We have absolutely no idea on when it will be released, at least with a go-live license. Can you please give as a clue?

  • Hi Daniel,

    .NET 3.5 Beta2 should be out later this month (July). It will support a go-live license.

    Hope this helps,


  • Hi Ben,

    VS 2008 Beta2 has support for WPF (including a built-in designer). We'll have a separate download add-in for VS 2008 that adds Silverlight support.

    Silverlight will support LINQ to Objects and LINQ to XML. If you are starting a project involving data in the next 6 months, I'd definitely recommend going with ASP.NET. Silverlight doesn't yet have databinding or rich data controls built-in - which would make building a data app very tricky.

    Hope this helps,


  • Great Scott ! Cool Links !

  • Hi Scott,
    I'm starting a new web project. Can you give me some advices choosing between ASP.NET Website with ASP.NET Web Application? I'm confusing. Thanks!

  • Hi Ngoc,

    Here is a good whitepaper that talks a little about the differences between the two project options: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/Aa730880(VS.80).aspx

    Hope this helps,


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