Review: Developer's Guide to ASP.NET 3.5
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by Anand Narayanaswamy
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Inside the Book and Recommendations

Chapter 1 provides a detailed overview of ASP.NET 3.5 with a brief discussion regarding advantages of ASP.NET over Classic ASP and other important features. This chapter also includes a walk through and features of Visual Web Developer 2008. Chapter 2 deeply covers the usage of Web Form controls, and I am sure readers will be able to master the concepts easily because of the author's user friendly writing style.

Chapters 3, 4, and 5 provide an excellent coverage of database programming with the help of screenshots and source codes. The author examines the usage of various data controls in Chapter 5. The remaining chapters delve deep into advanced topics such as Master Pages, Site Navigation, Personalization using profiles and Web Parts, User control development, Caching, Web Services, Security and User Management.

A core feature of the book is that it provides a comprehensive explanation of both Client and Server side programming using Ajax. I feel that these chapters will be a big bonus for developers as there is no need to purchase another book to learn the concepts related to Ajax. Moreover, these chapters will be highly useful for advanced developers as beginners won't step in to learn Ajax during the initial stages of learning.

I would suggest the author to devote one chapter for Ajax Toolkit controls in the next edition of the book. The book concludes with a brief overview of Configuration, Administration, and Deployment aspects involved with ASP.NET 3.5. The complete source code and a sample chapter can be downloaded from the website of the publisher.

I wonder how the author overlooked providing explanation of the usage of e-mails in ASP.NET 3.5. Most of the real world projects require implementation of some sort of messaging functionality, and developers should learn the techniques associated with messaging. It would be better if the author cropped the screenshots by hiding the navigation bar as it occupies a major portion in each figure which I feel detracted from the relevant portions of the images. I would recommend that the author provide important tips and tricks in boxes to catch the attention of readers. I also noticed few copy editing errors in the beginning pages of the book.

The Table of Contents (TOC) of the book looks confusing as it is laid out directly. Even though it is given chapter wise there is no mention about Chapter numbers. I found it difficult to read and go through it. It would be helpful if the author had given the chapter names in bold so that readers could quickly recognize chapters and sections inside it. I hope the author will consider this aspect and redraft it on the subsequent prints of the book. It would be great if the author could publish the redrafted TOC on the website so that existing readers who purchased the book could download and print it out easily.

Even though there are a few minor problems, the overall technical content covered in the book is of high quality. I don't have any hesitation to recommend this book for beginning and intermediate developers who wish to get start with ASP.NET 3.5. It will be an ideal companion for them.


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User Comments

Title: ASP.NET 3.5   
Name: Nitin Sharma
Date: 2008-01-29 11:06:23 PM
Comment:
I am working on .Net 2.0 these days.... Will certainly look to buy this one..........

Regards
Nitin Sharma
Software Developer






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