ASP.NET 2.0 has automated and revolutionized the tasks
associated with web development, particularly content creation. Microsoft has
kits such as the Beer House Starter Kit and Community Starter Kit to assist
developers. These kits provide a basic layout to achieve various tasks. Many
third party vendors have also developed powerful Content Management Systems
with a wide range of features. DotNetNuke is one such software system which
enables a user to quickly create high quality websites by using various
functionalities. Even though it is not difficult to learn its usage, users,
especially beginners to .NET, should understand the purpose of various concepts
such as Modules and Skins with the help of a learning material such as books.
DotNetNuke for Dummies is one such book which explores the different
functionalities of the application in a step-by-step manner.
The book is divided into five parts. Part 1 provides a basic
introduction to DNN installation procedures and a brief overview of various
settings with special reference about some of the common errors which occurs
during the installation of the product. Part 2 examines the creation and
management of users, pages, content, files, and skins. Chapter 5 helps you to
administer some of the modules such as HTML, FAQ, Links, and Announcements. The
last chapter of the part examines the management of advanced modules such as
Surveys, Banner Management, and Users Online.
The chapters in part 3 completely provide a comprehensive
coverage of various advanced modules such as Feedback, Blogs, Forums,
Repository, Cart, and Wiki. Although you will not use these modules initially,
it will be of great use at a later stage when you get used to the application.
The authors have done a great job in presenting the content in a lucid language
with a user friendly touch. Each section has been covered with the help of
screenshots, numerous tips, and warnings at relevant places. I hope it will
help a reader to understand the procedures involved more effectively.
Part 4 covers advanced aspects such as customization and
some of the modules such as Account Login and Email notifications. It also
contains a detailed overview of various log reports and scheduled tasks. The
last chapter of the part examines HttpModules, replacement of text editors,
enabling of Friendly URLs, and much more. The final part is more or less like
an appendix as it provides a list of ten commercial and freely available
modules including ten useful tips to enhance the productivity of DotNetNuke.
I would suggest that the publisher separate screen-texts and
content as it will be easy for users to understand the matter described. It would
be great if the publisher had provided a CD with some of the modules and cool
skins. The book doesn't teach you the creation of custom modules and skins. If
you are already well versed with DotNetNuke then this book is not for you as it
doesn’t contain any new information. You can download excerpts of some of the
chapters at the publisher's website and also view complete table of contents. The book will surely help beginners and
those who wish to get started with one of the most powerful .NET based open
source Content Management System.