Getting Started - What books RRS feed

  • Question

  • User-1653810778 posted


    I was a professional classic asp developer few years ago, but have not done much coding latelly.  I am still fully skilled as classic asp programmer, but I am really wanting to get into asp.net. I have always used vbScript, and would like to continue using the visual basic coding within asp.net.

    My question is, can someone guide me into the right direction for a good book or books,  Basically I am looking for a book that teaches using Visual Studio using vb.


    Saturday, January 31, 2009 4:44 PM

All replies

  • User-821857111 posted

    You will probably find VB pretty easy to pick up, and you already know about server-side web development, so I would recommend you go for one of the Professional ASP.NET books.  The one from Wrox is up there among the better ones: http://www.amazon.com/Professional-ASP-NET-3-5-VB-Programmer/dp/0470187573

    If you want to get to know VB specifically, Wrox, Apress and O'Reilly will do you well.  They will cover the basics of Object Oreinted Programming as well.


    Saturday, January 31, 2009 5:06 PM
  • User1747761241 posted

    IWelcome to the 21 century.  I've watched almost all the videos on this site.  Or download and watch on your phone or pc.  http://www.asp.net/learn/3.5-videos/

    I haven't looked at a computer book in years...


    Saturday, January 31, 2009 5:09 PM
  • User-1760427068 posted


    I had an idea for you.  It doesn't answer the question you asked and it's only fair that the first person who DOES answer what you asked should be given the points (and that isn't me here).

    That said, were you aware that there are videos here that are very helpful for a person who is just starting?


    It crossed my mind that if you didn't know the videos existed it would be kind of hard for you to write the question as "I'm looking for books or videos".  The videos are particularly helpful for features of VWD or VS such as dragging and dropping controls, using wizards to configure controls, configure your ConnectionString, etc.

    I hope you enjoy ASP.NET.  A combination of reading the books, watching some videos to get you started (with either Visual Web Developer or Visual Studio).

     I do want to recommend a book, though.

    As to books, I'm a C# person and to push further into VB I am half way through

    ASP.NET 3.5 in VB 2008 From Novice to Professional by Matthew MacDonald and at this point I'd recommend anything by him.

    I'm curious to see what other people recommend when they answer your thread (your question is of the kind that I think it would be good to get answers from several people).

    I just saw Mike's post--the above book I recommended was published by Apress.

    Saturday, January 31, 2009 5:15 PM
  • User-1653810778 posted

    Thank you all for your reply and very quick response.

    The problem I have with the videos is that I do not know where to start. Like I said, I have only done classic ASP before, and having a hard time understanding where and how to start.


    Saturday, January 31, 2009 5:32 PM
  • User-821857111 posted

    ASP.NET 3.5 in VB 2008 From Novice to Professional by Matthew MacDonald and at this point I'd recommend anything by him.

    I have his "Professional... "  version.  It's done with Mario Sputza (or something like that).  It is very good.  In fact, I must have about 80-90 books.  Mostly Wrox, Apress, O'Reilly.  Some SAMS and a couple of the yellow "Bible" books.  I'm not sure I'd bother with the SAMS 24 hours series.  Otherwise, they all have something to offer.


    Saturday, January 31, 2009 5:54 PM
  • User1747761241 posted

     Welcome to the 21st Century.  http://www.asp.net/learn/videos/video-49.aspx Start at this video.  Absolutely my favorite how to video.

    Then go here http://www.asp.net/learn/  bookmark in your browser.  pick a topic and watch all the videos in that topic.  Take notes on paper and learn.  Video and audio stimulation it sinks in quickly.  Like going to asp.net bootcamp for free.

    http://www.asp.net/learn/ajax-videos/video-283.aspx  My second favorite video.  I was inspired enough to actually implement ajax login on my website.  www.gosylvester.com  /*never miss a chance to plug your website */ 

    Saturday, January 31, 2009 7:05 PM
  • User-1760427068 posted

    If you're interested, send me a private message and I'll work with you on a beginning project or two to "get you off the ground".

    I've found ASP.NET very enjoyable and ammenable to learning by seeing examples.  Sometimes it helps to have something in hand that works, you can see how it works, and then you read about it in one of the books.

    Where to begin?

    I assume you will want to do things like create a table in the database, add records to the table and change data in the records.  This can be done using SQL statements.  I don't know if there is something analogous to it in ASP.  However, I remember SQL was probably the "friendliest" thing to learn when moving into ASP.NET.

    After working with several people on getting started projects, two things come to the forefront.  You need to put a database file in your web site and it works well to let it take the default name, Database.mdf.  Control + shift + A brings up about two dozen choices of templates for new items and you want SQL Server Database.  Let the computer give it the name Database.mdf and yes, you want to put it in a folder called App_Data (and since Visual Web Developer comes out and asks you if you want to do this, I'm assuming Visual Studio 2008 will also ask you "Do you want to put it in App_Data"--just say yes).

    With a Database.mdf in App_Data, you then want to change a part of your web.config file, the part where connection strings are place.

    Find <connectionStrings />

    and change it to

        <add name="ConnectionString" connectionString="Data Source=.\SQLEXPRESS;AttachDbFilename=|DataDirectory|\Database.mdf;Integrated Security=True;User Instance=True"
            providerName="System.Data.SqlClient" />

    Briefly notice that within the connection string it has Database.mdf which you previously created.

    At this point you can write small programs to try different things.  I have a few I can give to you.

    There are three Executes: ExecuteReader(), ExecuteNonQuery() and ExecuteScalar() and you definitely want to learn about the first two right away.  ExecuteReader() will "look" through your table and find all the records, or selectively find records if you ask it to be selective (for example you tell it to look for records in a table of grades where the value is greater than 90). 

    ExecuteNonQuery() is used with SQL for creating tables, adding records to tables and updating data in tables (using SQL statements). 

    I would recommend working with a Label control and having it show things that come from a table.  Maybe the table has two fields, firstname and lastname (and the table is named People) and you have ExecuteReader() go through it and for each record do something like print lastname + ", " + firstname + "<br />".  This proves you can take data from a table and display it, which I am sure is one of your early objectives.

    You may want to do some math.  Maybe you have a table with names and prices and you have the code behind take a price and multiply it by 1.05 to show the effect of a 5% tax.

    At this point you may want to do some work with the controls such as a DropDownList or a RadioButtonList.  You can use SqlDataSource to with a DropDownList--the SqlDataSource finds things table and then the DropDownList uses the SqlDataSource.  Maybe you are interested in two things, the name of something and an ID code for it, and you configure the DropDownList so that it shows the product name and when it is selected, the ID code is also available (for example: a customer makes a selection based on the product name but when the purchase is processed the ID code is sent to a table.)  {this deals with selecteditem and selectedvalue}

    There are wizards you can use after you drag something onto an aspx page--you'll want to become familiar with these because they speed up the web page building process.

    I laid out some things I thought might interest a person starting at the very beginning because I remember some of the beginning steps were a little more difficult.  Sometimes it's a little hard to ask the question in a way that gives you the answer your need.

    Saturday, January 31, 2009 7:31 PM