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Customer Review

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good desktop reference, May 12, 2010
This review is from: Professional ASP.NET 4 in C# and VB (Paperback)
This book, I feel, is aimed at a high level overview of Asp.Net 4.0 and will mainly be used as reference manual that you refer to whenever you are looking for quick information on a certain aspect of Asp.Net's programming.

The book is hefty weighing in at over 1450 pages and covers virtually every aspect of Asp.Net programming that you would care to mention, although not every single aspect as I'll explain later. It is generally very easy to read with a good flowing style of writing although you can certainly ascertain where the writers have added new sections and re-written parts of chapters and where they have simply updated the previous release of the book for an older Framework. This is one of my major criticisms of this book and it is very prevalent in the early chapters. Whilst having a brief overview of the history of Asp.Net is good and should indeed be included in books such as this, after that, mentions of classic Asp should not be relevant. How many people are honestly going to be converting a website or application from Classic Asp straight to Asp.Net 4? The authors stating what the difference is and even providing examples in the early chapters of the differences seem totally of place with a technology that is now in it's fourth major iteration (sixth iteration if you count all the releases of the .Net framework) and is 10 years old. All that you gather from this is that the authors simply done a global replace of "asp.net x.x" to "asp.net 4" in these chapters and that the chapters were actually written back in the Asp.Net 1 or Asp.Net 1.1 days when the technology was still relatively new. These early chapters really need to be re-written from scratch.

Now that my main criticism is out of the way, lets proceed to the rest of the book. With over 35 chapters the authors touch on virtually every aspect of Asp.Net programming from the basic .Net controls through to newer technologies such as LINQ, Ajax and the new Asp.Net MVC 2 framework. Although each chapter is not an exhaustive guide to each of these technologies or concepts (it would take a book standing around 6 feet tall or more and would be totally impractical to do this) it does give you enough of an overview to get stuck in actually start using them. It would have been nice to see more on the Asp.Net MVC 2 framework itself although with the integration of other chapters detailing WCF services, the entity framework etc. it suffices to get you started if that is what you are looking for.

The book does not (and could not) cover every single aspect of the Asp.Net Framework 4 however a fairly large omission in my view is that there is not a chapter on JQuery which Microsoft are now supporting and is standard in Asp.Net 4 projects.

If you are new to Asp.Net programming then this book is an excellent starting place to learn the technologies involved. If you are an experienced programmer then this book is still recommended as a desktop reference book giving you a quick insight into a particular aspect that you may be dealing with then looking elsewhere for more detailed information should that need arise.

On a side note, I noticed that Wrox has changed their customary writers pictures on the front cover and have instead moved them to the back cover with some new and varied images being used on the front. I actually like this approach although I am puzzled by the images. What does a football (soccer if you're American) team holding what looks like a miniature version of the FA cup have to do with Asp.Net programming?
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 30, 2010 1:07:41 PM PDT
Re your comment "How many people are honestly going to be converting a website or application from Classic Asp straight to Asp.Net 4?", I found this extremely funny, since I am doing exactly that and was interested in seeing whether this book would be useful for that precise task!

Posted on May 30, 2010 11:45:37 PM PDT
Amazonian says:
Funny that JQuery is included in the "Beginning" book Beginning ASP.NET 4: in C# and VB (Wrox Programmer to Programmer) and ASP in this one. Wrox has got the 2 topics turned around!

Posted on Jul 20, 2010 6:03:18 AM PDT
For me this book must be rewritten from scratch.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 23, 2010 9:09:45 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 23, 2010 9:10:50 AM PDT
........Re your comment "How many people are honestly going to be converting a website or application from Classic Asp straight to Asp.Net 4?", I found this extremely funny, since I am doing exactly that and was interested in seeing whether this book would be useful for that precise task!

lol, me too

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 25, 2011 8:48:10 PM PST
E. Sawyer says:
Yep, me too. I've been writing in classic ASP forever and I'm interested in this book exactly for that reason: to convert some of my existing sites to ASP.NET 4
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Colin Brown
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   

Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,336