Website using ASP.Net and HTML pages RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have a website and I have an ASP.Net web application (with a SQL Server backend). I need to combine the two for one seamless UX.

    On the home page there needs to be a login box. When the user logs in I want to go to the secure ASP.Net application which should just be an extension of the website. I have a master page for the aspx pages. Do I need to use a Dynamic Web Template for the html pages? If so how do I handle the navigation menu? I'm using a asp:Menu in the master page. The DWT's that I have seen use unordered lists with <a> tags to navigate the site.

    Should I just not use HTML and do it all in aspx pages? If thats the case then Expression Web doesnt really do me any good does it?

    In case you cant tell I'm an application developer with little experience as with web site development.

    Thanks in advance,

    Doug Stiers

    Thursday, August 4, 2011 1:42 PM

All replies

  • As you already have what sounds like the main part of the site in ASP.Net it seems logical to me to have the rest of it that way. You might want to create a separate MasterPage for the main site

    xWeb can create aspx pages for you, work with MasterPages etc, but does not give you nay help with coding. So, if you have the log-on form on the home page, you'll need to have some code that handles that and Visual Studio (or VS Express) would be better for that.

    Where xWeb has the advantage over VS is in the design tools for CSS etc. and many people use both togehter to get the best features out of each. I certainly do.


    Ian Haynes

    EW V4 Add-Ins
    EW resources, hints and tips
    Thursday, August 4, 2011 1:54 PM
  • Hard to answer this...

    Personally, I would probably end up doing it all.  Master Pages for the aspx pages.  DWT for the plain html pages.  Style and CSS all the way through.

    Kind of a personal preference thing.  You can combine all that for one seamless UX no problem....I do it all the time.

    Thank you for not trying to start an argument.
    Thursday, August 4, 2011 3:18 PM
  • "Should I just not use HTML and do it all in aspx pages? If thats the case then Expression Web doesnt really do me any good does it?"

    I'm not sure why you said that. EW creates aspx pages, including master pages, just fine.

    Yes you can have both .html  and .apsx pages in the same site, but the pages with asp.net controls on them, including the login, have to be .aspx pages.

    You can do the whole thing in EW, or also use VS/VWD free versions to help with back-end asp.net coding.  Depends on how complex the asp.net pages are.

    Thursday, August 4, 2011 4:01 PM
  • Why not just make all of your page ASP.NET pages? You can then use the same menu and master page for all of your pages. Otherwise, you have to maintain the same thing in multiple places.

    Alternatively, you can either host on IIS 7 or set up a wildcard mapping to ASP.NET in IIS. In IIS 7, there's an integrated pipeline that will cause all requests to execute within the ASP.NET pipeline.


    Jim Cheshire -- Microsoft
    Thursday, August 4, 2011 4:40 PM
  • As already stated, you may use a mixture of aspx and html pages. However, if your templating method of choice is asp.net master pages, I would NOT recommend mixing in DWT templating with it.

    The principal reason for using a templating approach is to simplify maintenance and to provide a consistency of appearance and user experience throughout the site. Design changes can be made in one location, and more importantly, navigation (top/side menu and footer) can be maintained in one location. Both of these advantages are negated by using both aspx master pages and DWTs in the same site, particularly if you have already implemented an asp:Menu.

    Furthermore, there is no reason to do so. Master pages are server-side technology, so when changes are made it is necessary to publish only the updated master page. With DWTs, whenever a change is made, all attached pages must be updated and republished. As sites grow, this becomes a significant factor. Master pages are as easily worked with as DWTs; some would say easier.

    My suggestion is, if you've established a master page structure, go with it. Toss in HTML if you wish (although bear in mind the page navigation issue; asp:Menu requires asp.net). I will second Ian on this. I would stick with master pages and do the asp.net in VS2010 (or whatever you have, VWDX, VS Express, etc.), and use EW for its strengths: design using html and css. Thanks to a recent registry hack (see this thread, Doug—some made the reg file work, for me, the name=value pair method on the main entry worked) EW now recognizes external file changes, so you can easily round-trip between VS/VWDX and EW, even having the same page simultaneously open in both. Using both, each for it's strengths, would be my recommendation.


    Please remember to "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue. It is common courtesy to recognize those who have helped you, and it also makes it easier for visitors to find the resolution later.

    Thursday, August 4, 2011 4:43 PM
  • Ok wipe the fog and break it down as simple as it will go.  Really there are only two choices!  Use all asp.net pages or mix them?  That's really it.  It sounds like you are afraid to make them all asp.net master/detail pages....  If you' re not, that is the logical choice.  If you are, then your only choice is to mix them.

    If you mix them, you will have to make your .dwt look like your master page.  You will also have to incorporate .aspx with the .dwt to get the menu.  You will have to maintain two different files to preserve the same UX.  Its more work.  IMHO, I agree, its more complicated than the obvious route that you are afraid of.

    As Nancy says, it doesn't matter if they are .aspx pages with master/detail, Xweb 4 will handle them just fine and help you along.  So if its confidence you need, I suggest trying it first and see how far you can get.  Once you figure it out, converting the other html pages to use the same master template will be easy and you will have met the challenge and learned something new.

    You can do it !

    Thank you for not trying to start an argument.

    Thursday, August 4, 2011 5:18 PM