Microsoft Visual InterDev 6.0 Enterprise Developer's Workshop Paperback – Oct 1 1998
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For an excellent tour of Web development using Microsoft tools, readers should consider getting a copy of Microsoft Visual InterDev 6.0 Enterprise Developer's Workshop. Besides introducing Visual InterDev, this title covers the realities of enterprise development, including scalability and accessing legacy data on mainframes.
Sections on Visual InterDev 6.0 concentrate on its new Rapid Application Development (RAD) features. Then it's on to choosing which Web technologies to use: pure HTML, dynamic HTML (DHTML), and/or style sheets. (The author shows what options to use for the public Internet versus options that provide better functionality at the cost of a more restricted audience.)
Chapters on Microsoft BackOffice tools will prove invaluable to any ASP developer. There's excellent coverage of ActiveX Data Objects (ADO) for databases, transactions with Microsoft Transaction Server (MTS), and the advantages of message queueing with Microsoft Message Queue Server (MSMQ). One especially notable chapter surveys the tools that allow IIS Web sites to connect to legacy mainframe data.
Later the author shows you how to improve performance of a lagging ASP-based Web application, including many tips for improving response times. Much more than just a fine introduction to Visual InterDev, this book also delivers plenty of useful design expertise for using Microsoft technologies on the enterprise. --Richard Dragan
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.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
As a genenal overview of Visual InterDev and how it interacts with other Microsoft applications (MTS, MSMQ), this book is great. It's a high-level look at how to incorporate Visual InterDev as one of your web building tools and integrate it with the other Microsoft tools ....
As a book on 'how to use' Visual InterDev, this book is not so good. It doesn't go into any details or specifics (although there is an application on the CD which you modify chapter by chapter). There are a few coding examples, but for a beginner looking for help on using Visual InterDev, look elsewhere. This book is much more of an overview than a 'how-to' manual ...
As a study guide for the Microsoft Exam #70-152 (Designing and Implementing Web Solutions with Microsoft Visual InterDev 6.0), forget it. That exam (which I passed) is about 10% Visual InterDev and 90% HTML / ASP / COM / VBScript / General-Web-Stuff. There isn't a good study book for that exam anywhere - trust me, I've looked ...
Just know what it is that you're buying - this is a high-level look at Visual InterDev, nothing more and nothing less.
"This book is designed to give the reader unfamiliar with Visual InterDev 6.0 a brief introduction... some background on Web development for client-server application developers.... The real thrust of this book, however, is in describing the challenges faced by the Web developer...."
The above excerpt, from the Introduction, captures the essence of the book. I suspect that the potential reader would have been better served had the title and its MS Series suggested a more introductory level of material. If the reader is experienced with solution architectures, and familiar with VI6, then the book is likely to be a disappointment. On the other hand, if the reader is completely unfamiliar with VI6, the book does not offer sufficient detail to get up and running in VI6. Despite a Web application example used throughout the book, the discussion remains mostly at a bird's eye view. A great number of significant enterprise issues are raised and their theory discussed. Too few are tackled at a practical level.
WEAKNESSES: The target audience for this substantial book is not apparent from its selection of material, nor from its title. It is not basic enough for beginners. It is too basic and generalized for experienced developers. That leaves a group in the middle that may find this a perfect melding of theory and pragmatism.
With an entire chapter on MTS, I expected more than the usual recitation of MTS features and benefits. It really needed a number of explicit examples of the right way to create components for MTS. The chapter on MSMQ was equally theoretical, but experienced VB developers have fewer MSMQ pits to fall into than they have with MTS.
The chapter on "Optimizing Data Access", though well done, focuses on SQL Server techniques, to the exclusion of other DBMSs. Some of the techniques may be applied to other data sources, but the optimization tools are SQL Server only.
STRENGTHS: This really is a wonderful survey of the principles of enterprise development on the Web. For a reader with moderate experience using VI6, and little exposure to enterprise concepts and solution architectures, Duthie provides a solid foundation in the context of Web development. (Most of this is great for the VB Distributed exam 70-175.) The chapter on "Interoperability with Legacy Systems" presents a useful overview of SNA Server and COMTI.
CONCLUSIONS: A very readable book, most useful to moderately experienced VI6 users who have limited exposure to solution architectures and enterprise concepts. More advanced developers may find a few pearls.
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