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ASP.NET in a Nutshell Paperback – Aug 27 2003

3.8 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 1000 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 2 edition (Sept. 6 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596005202
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596005207
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 4.7 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,908,923 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Publisher

As a quick reference and tutorial in one, ASP.NET in a Nutshell goes beyond the published documentation to highlight little-known details, stress practical uses for particular features, and provide real-world examples that show how features can be used in a working application. This book covers application and web service development, custom controls, data access, security, deployment, and error handling. There’s also an overview of web-related class libraries. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

G. Andrew Duthie is an experienced ASP.NET developer. He is a frequent speaker at ASP.NET conferences, and is the author of a number of books on ASP.NET and Visual Interdev.

Matthew MacDonald is a developer, author, and educator in all things Visual Basic and .NET. He's worked with Visual Basic and ASP since their initial versions, and written over a dozen books on the subject, including The Book of VB .NET (No Starch Press) and Visual Basic 2005: A Developer's Notebook (O'Reilly). He has also written Excel 2007:The Missing Manual, Excel 2007 for Starters: The Missing Manual, Access 2007:The Missing Manual, and Access 2007 for Starters: The Missing Manual, all from O'Reilly. His web site is

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I've been reading O'Reilly since the days of the tiny fifty page staple-bound brown Nutshell books that covered shell commands and the first version of Perl. This book is that has taken that same approach to data condensation and applied it to everything you need to know about ASP.NET. And extend they have at almost a thousand pages it is far heavier than the original books, but that doesn't make it any less worthwhile.
The first section covers all of the conceptual introductions to the topics, .NET controls, web services, configuration and security and all of the basics. The second section covers each section of the class library in a concise and consistent form that make it so much easier to grab for the book before you even press F1 to bring up the MSDN. Where necessary they include code fragments to demonstrate the point along with the explanatory text but it is never overblown or unnecessary.
This isn't light bedtime reading but it is an invaluable reference to sit next to the keyboard of any ASP.NET programmer.
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By A Customer on Feb. 26 2003
Format: Paperback
Review: ASP.NET in a Nutshell - A Desktop Quick Reference

ASP.NET in a Nutshell is the fast track way to get up-to-speed on Microsoft's next generation technology for building web enabled applications on the .NET platform.

The book is structured in three sections. Part 1 provides a high level overview of what ASP.NET is and discusses the new features such as Web Services, Server Controls, Data Access (ADO.NET), Security, Configuration, Error Handling, and Validation Controls. Part 2 is a reference to each of the major classes that are available as part of the ASP.NET object model. A chapter is devoted to each of the following classes:

- Page
- HttpApplication and HttpApplicationState
- HttpContext
- HttpException
- HttpRequest
- HttpResponse
- HttpServerUtility
- HttpSessionState

Part 3 provides a reference to the namespaces you'll most commonly come across while developing ASP.NET applications. Of all three sections, I found this section to be the least useful. Although each of the classes has an introductory reference, Most of the information here can be sourced easily from the MSDN documentation. Such a reference would have been better suited to a book on ASP, where the official documentation was somewhat scarce.

The books introductory chapters start out with code examples written in both VB.NET and C#, however as you progress further through the book the samples are provided in VB.NET only. This is not such a bad thing, but I would have preferred it had the authors stuck to one language throughout the book, or give consistent examples throughout the book in both languages.

This is not a book for beginners. For those readers just starting out with ASP.
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By A Customer on Feb. 24 2003
Format: Paperback
I'm afraid I disagree with most of the reviews.
This book is divided in three sections:
1-A "fast-paced introduction to ASP.NET" (ch.1-11, p.1-228)
2-A "detailed reference to most frequently used ASP.NET classes" (ch.12-20)and,
3-A "Quick reference" of the ASP-related namespaces(ch.21-38)
My comments:
1-The fast-paced intro reads rather like a list than an actual intro. I mean you don't really get the picture of what .NET, or the elements described here, is about. And, though it certainly aims at programmers with previous experience, its code examples are not focused on the topic discussed but wastes pages upon pages by showing context code as well(which could have been clearly implied). So if you know the things covered here, it's a waste, if you don't know them you are not going to get any useable info. Finally occupying roughly the 1/3 of the book it could really get off the way.
2-The reference of the most used classes is nothing you couldn't find in the framework's documendation. Yes, it's focused on web-related classes and more handy maybe than the on-line reference but that's not a big deal. The big deal is, though, that it does not give you a better insight into the programming logic they supply. So what's the benefit?
3-The quick namespace reference part is the best one(compared to others). It has a UML formatted diagram of each namespace followed by a short description of its classes each with a list of its methods and properties. The diagrams are good and give you a panoramic view but an index of the UML notation is missing. Also the methods and properties of the classes are just listed and not described so what's the use if you need additional reference resources?
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Format: Paperback
I picked this particular book because it was by O'Reilly, and their reference "ASP in a Nutshell" is excellent. However, that other book is by a different author, and ASP.NET is far more complex than classic ASP.
The dilemma the authors faced was that if they wanted to create an excellent reference at a reasonable price, they had to skimp on creating a good tutorial. Well, they succeeded in creating an excellent reference at a fair price. The book is almost 800 pages, and I think they used the space very well. But as other reviewers have noted, if you need a slower-paced introduction, you will need another book. O'Reilly & Associates have apparently realized this, because they also publish "Programming ASP.NET" (which I know little about).
To me, the authors seem to be very knowledgeable. The book is well-organized and doesn't skimp on any ASP.NET topics. They know "classic" ASP extremely well, which is helpful if you yourself are migrating from classic ASP.
C# and other non-VB programmers will notice a slight bias towards Visual Basic .NET, but honestly this shouldn't be a problem for anybody, especially if you were used to switching between VBScript and JScript in "classic" ASP.
If I could change one thing about the book, it would be the introduction to ADO.NET. ADO.NET only bears a superficial resemblance to "classic" ADO, and the bound ASP.NET data controls are completely new. Yet the chapter that covers them is only 23 pages long. The chapter is explicitly written as an overview, but if you have no other printed reference handy the chapter ends up being just a teaser. The examples in that chapter are fairly similar to the ones in the MDSN library, which are quite "lazy". I would have gladly paid another $2.20 for 50 more pages to expand upon the topic.
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