Book Review: Ultra-Fast ASP.NET

A book packed full of tips to boost the performance of ASP.NET applications

Ultra-Fast ASP.NET
Rating: ****
Author: Richard Kiessig
Publisher: APress
ISBN: 978-1-4302-2383-2
Website: http://www.apress.com/book/view/1430223839
Price: US$49.99
500 pages


ASP.NET developers are constantly on a lookout for books that help them to improve the performance of their applications. Many authors cover only the basic fundamentals of ASP.NET, but in his latest book, Ultra-Fast ASP.NET, Richard Kiessig has made a great attempt to examine several advanced technical issues that will help developers create powerful and stable ASP.NET applications.

Chapter 1 examines the basic principles and methods involved with the development of ASP.NET applications. Chapter 2 outlines a few tips to improve application performance and covers network and CSS optimization, DHTML, AJAX, and Silverlight. You will also learn various ways to optimize the performance of JavaScript in ASP.NET applications. Chapter 3 discusses caching in detail, with special reference to Silverlight, SQL Server, and distributed caching. Chapter 4 delves deep into the relevant aspects of Microsoft IIS 7, and chapter 5 discusses tips associated with threads and sessions.

Chapter 6 examines the usage of master pages, user controls, and themes including certain browser-related aspects. It also outlines the steps required to access ASP.NET controls using JavaScript. Chapter 7 starts with a detailed coverage of building custom HttpModules and HttpHandlers, then moves on to discussing URL rewriting, control adapters, redirects, and white-space filtering. Chapter 8 explores the concepts related to the SQL Server relational database, and chapter 9 examines concepts related to SQL Server Analysis Services. The author has given more importance to these area, as developers regularly employ SQL Server and Analysis Services when building real-world applications.

The last chapter provides detailed coverage related to certain advanced topics, such as capacity planning, disk subsystems, network design, firewalls, routers, load balancing, and server monitoring. The book also includes a glossary that helps you to familiarize yourself with the various terminologies associated with business intelligence. I would like to see an inclusion of chapters related to Microsoft BizTalk Server, SharePoint, and MySQL in the next edition of the book.

I don't recommend this book for beginners, as it contains several advanced topics that require prior knowledge of ASP.NET. However, it will be a great resource for those developers who are well-versed in ASP.NET and are looking to improve the performance of their applications by employing various hacks and techniques. This book is a source of concepts that I haven't found elsewhere and thus a virtual treasure trove for ASP.NET developers.


Anand Narayanaswamy ([email protected]) is a Microsoft MVP who works as an independent consultant based in Trivandrum, India. He is the author of Community Server Quickly (Packt Publishing) and runs www.learnxpress.com and www.dotnetalbum.com.

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