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Learning ASP.NET 3.5



Learning ASP.NET 3.5

Many publishers have released different types of books to help developers in their quest to master ASP.NET 3.5. While some books examine only a particular topic, such as ADO.NET and LINQ, there are books that provide detailed coverage regarding each and every concept starting from the fundamentals. I recently had an opportunity to read the new book written by familiar faces: Jesse Liberty, Dan Hurwitz, and Brian MacDonald. The authors have used the Visual Web Developer 2008 Express Edition, which is available free of cost, so it is easy for beginners to get started with the book straight away. The book is divided into 11 chapters and a few appendixes.


Chapter 1 examines the basic structure of the IDE with the help of a simple HelloWorld application. Chapter 2 provides a detailed overview of the various background processes involved with the development of an ASP.NET 3.5 application, including the use of some of the standard Toolbox controls. While Chapter 3 discusses the steps required to implement AJAX in an ASP.NET application, Chapter 4 enables you to master the GridView control, including the use of LINQ to develop applications loaded with dynamic data. I hope these chapters will be useful for advanced developers.


Chapters 5 and 6 provide crisp coverage of the use of various validation and navigation controls, style sheets, master pages, sitemaps, and breadcrumbs. Chapter 7 examines the various phases of the lifecycle of an ASP.NET application, including a comprehensive explanation of view, session, and application states. Debugging an ASP.NET application is essential before deployment, and Chapter 8 helps a developer master the various techniques of it in detail.


Chapters 9 and 10 delve deep into security-related aspects, management of users and roles, and the steps involved in the creation of ASP.NET applications using themes and skins. The book includes a separate chapter to illustrate the various concepts in the form of a sample project, which I hope will help developers master the techniques discussed in the book.


I am disappointed with the content, as the book doesn t cover ListView, DataPager controls, AJAX, Silverlight, and the procedure to send e-mails using an ASP.NET 3.5 application. The authors have given a short introduction to the ListView control, but suggested readers purchase an advanced book written by one of the same authors. It felt like a marketing tactic to push sales of another book.

The book includes a detailed description of all the essential concepts involved with the development of a basic ASP.NET application, but not the new features of ASP.NET 3.5. The book will not be useful for those developers who are already well acquainted with ASP.NET 2.0.


I feel this book will be useful for beginners because of the lucid writing style, but still they will be either left wanting more or compelled to purchase another book to learn the new features of ASP.NET 3.5. I wonder how the publisher has given the name of the book as Learning ASP.NET 3.5 when there is not much content relevant to ASP.NET 3.5 other than LINQ. I hope the authors will release an updated edition of the book in the near future by incorporating the above suggestions.


Anand Narayanaswamy



Title: Learning ASP.NET 3.5, 2nd Edition

Authors: Jesse Liberty, Dan Hurwitz, and Brian MacDonald

Publisher: O Reilly Media, Inc

ISBN: 978-0-596-51845-5

Web Site:

Price: US$44.99

Page Count: 588



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