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Visual Basic Vs. Visual Basic Express RRS feed

  • Question

  • I currently run a legacy website (Frontpage 2000), which incorporates over 100 update forms and database result forms tied to the site's access database . My main website is a Wordpress site, but I don't want public access to the database site, which is used for the back-end administration of my business.

    Question: What would be the best alternative to using a Frontpage website and Access, where I can accomplish the same thing as what I am doing now. I have had a suggestion to go to Visual Basic and Visual Basic Express, and migrate the access database into a MySQL database. Microsoft ExpressionWeb is no longer supported, so....

    What would be the difference between using VB and VB Express?

    Or is there a VB support website I can go to get this answered?

    Thanks,

    Ron

     
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 2:04 AM

Answers

  • "and php uses unix"

    Correction:  Windows runs PHP just fine.  I have, literally, never had a Windows hosting plan that didn't also support PHP.


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Friday, January 19, 2018 1:29 AM
    Friday, January 19, 2018 1:26 AM
  • there is not really any diference they are the same., vB Express means visual studio express. you only need to make sure you are working with either vb.net or legacy vb(the old one).

    you can migrate using MySql DATABASE or i would recomend sql server express is free., you can use visual studio html editor and can power it up with some plugings like resharper to enhance the html design. but you could use mvc framework too to rapidly build the new page using this pattern.

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:11 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 2:17 AM
  • First let's get the most significant issue resolved.

    You mention WordPress but you are not specific about its relevance. You also say FrontPage extensions, as if you use FrontPage extensions with WordPress. Of course you don't but it is not clear what the relevance is of all that.

    FrontPage extensions is dead. You cannot use it. The only choices I am aware of are FTP and Web Deploy. FTP does not do databases (except as files, not databases).

    There is something new called ASP.Net Core that works very differently but I know little about that.

    If you want to use your WordPress site then you might be limited to PHP. Is that what you want to do? Do you understand that if you want to use ASP.Net and languages such as C# then you can't use it with WordPress? So how is the WordPress site relevant? Assuming it is not then are you asking what to use for the other website? See ASP.NET Documentation for some help deciding which of the two versions of ASP.NET to use. And you can jump ahead to current technology if you use SQL Server and Entity Framework. Then if you have a hosting company that supports current technology then you will use Web Deploy.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info


    • Edited by Simple Samples Thursday, January 18, 2018 4:12 AM I forgot a link
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:11 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 4:10 AM
  • You are asking this on the Expression Web forum, so the first thing I'll point out is that EW not being supported by Microsoft doesn't mean it stops working,  The last version of EW4 is free, and works just fine.  It's just HTML/CSS, and whatever JavaScript and possibly asp.net you care to use, which does not change with EW not being updated anymore.

    However, neither EW or Visual Studio creates forms for you.  If you have a lot of classic ASP forms already in your site, you'll need to keep using them (which you can - Classic ASP still works), or rewrite them yourself if you intend to use a new scripting language.  If you do intend to stick with classic ASP, be aware that neither EW nor Visual Studio provide any intellisense for Classic ASP, and EW's built-in server does not run Classic ASP so you'd have to set up IIS OR IIS Express with Classic ASP to preview and test.

    Access is not the best choice for a website database, although if it's not causing you problems, you could keep using it.  Switching to SQL Server or another database makes technical sense, but is separate from your other question: you can keep the classic ASP and change databases, you can switch scripting languages and keep Access (although not recommended).


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Saturday, January 20, 2018 2:49 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 5:24 AM
  • Yes there are various interpretations of "support". People often equate "support" with "functional". Microsoft often says they are no longer supporting something but they also assure people it still works. FrontPage Extensions is an example of something that is generally not functional; most hosting companies don't offer it.

    I can confirm that Expression Web 4 works; I have been using it to edit web sites except I am learning to use Visual Studio to do that more than I did. VS is frustrating sometimes; the HTML editor does not have all the features that the Expression Web 4 editor has, such as searching in the design view and indenting (so we can create sub-lists).

    I don't know if VS would support a classic ASP web site but I would be surprised if it did not. We cannot create such a web site in VS but we can probably open one in VS that already exists. In Expression Web 4 we seem to be able to create classic ASP pages; the following is the "File" | "New" I see for Expression Web 4. Am I correct that "ASP" creates a classic ASP page?



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:12 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 6:48 AM
  • Aston I will try to take these questions in order

    Visual Studio has a toolbox from which you can drag textboxes (and other html things) onto your page (each page is actually a form), you can give each textbox and ID and you can save whatever is entered into textboxes into pre-arranged fields in your database.  So you can have a page with a bunch of textboxes filled out by users, who then can click a button and have their information added to the database.

    You can also drag things like a gridview onto your page, and have the data from your database displayed in that gridview.  Most of the VB back-end coding is done automatically for you. You can basically do everything (and more) that you could do with Frontpage.  Look at the tutorials under my signature to see how to do some of these things ( those tutorials were written years ago, so some aspects of them are out of date, but the basics are still good).  

    I don't know that asp.net is any more or less secure that classical asp.  Either way, if you are allowing users to input data that is going to your database, you have to take care to prevent users from adding malicious code (know as SQL injection) into your database, which can be done by restricting the characters that users can type into your textboxes. And you need to have some method of keeping bots out which can be done in several ways (captchas are a common way).

    Asp.net and php are two different flavors of code that can be used.  Asp.net requires a Windows server and php uses unix.  An advantage of asp.net for someone like yourself (or me) is that it does so much of the background code for you via the (wonderful) asp.net controls you just have to drag onto the page.

    Visual Studio Express, Visual Web Developer Express are basically referring to the same thing, I think it may be referred to as Visual Studio Community these days.  Anyway, the Express term denotes the free version. There's no need to pay for anything beyond the express versions.

    Honestly, the hardest part of getting started is figuring out which of all the versions MS offers are the proper ones to download. I have never moved to the Community version yet myself, but I suspect the downloads these days will automatically get you SQLExpress, Visual Studio Express and SQLServer Management Studio Express.

    Here's where you start: Microsoft Site

    Have fun.  BTW, the asp.net forum is where you can always get any question answered. You will need that.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:12 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 7:26 PM
  • Is there a forum you can recommend that is specific to Visual Studio Express and one for Sql Server Express specifically

    The ASP.NET forum I mentioned is the place for Visual Studio questions.

    There is also a SQL server forum here but I think most of the questions you will run into will get answered in the ASP.NET forum. Also, Google is your friend. There are a number of SQL-related forums (just Google "mssql forums").  And I have had good luck Googling how to do particular things like, for example, "migrate sql database to new server".

    When I left Frontpage, I started with a Scott Mitchell book "Sam's Teach Yourself ASP.NET  2.0 in 24 hours" that I found very useful. I'm certain there are later versions of the now-old book.

    Two other reference books I like are Murach's "ASP.NET 3.5 with VB 2008" and SQLServer 2008".  Again those have been around a while, and there may be more recent versions.

    Have fun.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Friday, January 19, 2018 2:33 PM
    Friday, January 19, 2018 2:22 PM
  • Since this is a reply to many of the previous posts I will post it as a reply to the original post.

    I don't understand why you say that FrontPage Extensions does database stuff. I assume it does help with databases more than I am aware of but I doubt that it does as much as you think. It is confusing for me since no one else has said anything relevant to that.

    Since this question asks about Visual Basic I am surprised that you want to use Linux (Apache) servers. Are you sure that is possible? I am not sure but as far as I know there is limited or no support of VB in Apache or for Apache.

    See SQL Server Downloads. Ignoring the purchase version (that you can get a trial for) you have the choice of either a Developer version or an Express edition. All of that however is not especially relevant if you are using SQL Server in a website host. See SQL Server 2016 Express LocalDB; it is (I think) installed automatically with Visual Studio. I know that Visual Studio includes a SQL Server called LocalDB. So you can do SQL Server development immediately after installing VS 2017 Community. After installing VS we can also install the developer edition of SQL Server and that is virtually the same as the full SQL Server. As far as I know you can use MySQL but if you want to use VB then MySQL probably does not offer much advantage.

    Then there is Azure. You can use an Azure database from essentially anywhere there is an internet connection, including desktop applications; not just websites.

    Whether you use MySQL, SQL Server or Azure, you can use Entity Framework to do database programing. You can use EF for websites and for desktop applications.

    Your description of your private website indicates that you should consider using a web service. "REST" is a type of web service. A web service resides in a website but can be used from anywhere an internet connection can be used. It can be used by websites and by desktop applications. All popular operating systems and languages and browsers support web services (at least REST web services). See JSONPlaceholder - Fake online REST API for developers; it is as an example of web services. In that page if you click on the link for users then you will get back a JSON object of an array of users. Usually you would do that in your program; you can write a Windows Forms or a WPF or ASP.Net or JavaScript application that sends the request and gets results back. A web service can update a database (if the developer writes the code to do that). See Online REST Web Service Demo for another description and demos. See JSON Webservice for an actual useful web service that provides geographical information. There are other web services, such as Google Maps web services that are free but require a key and many that we must pay for.

    ASP and ASP.Net have enhanced versions of most HTML elements. ASP.Net can bind C# and VB.Net fields to fields in the web page. ASP.Net does not do database stuff; database stuff can be done in ASP.Net code in ASP.Net pages.

    PHP, ASP and ASP.Net are a CGI. The HTML "Form" tag can use a CGI to process the data from the form. When a Submit button in a form is pressed the data can be sent to the server and processed by a CGI. A CGI is a program that developers can write. The CGI can process the data and the results can be shown in another HTML page. Both PHP and ASP.Net are CGI applications (I assume that performance is enhanced by improving the way a CGI is processed but the general concept is the same). PHP includes a compiler; ASP.Net does not. For ASP.Net the C# and VB.Net languages are usually the language used for ASP.Net, but otherwise ASP.Net and PHP are very much alike in what they do. Both of them read in a specified page, such as a ".php" for PHP and ".aspx" for ASP.Net, process it and produce a HTML file out. They execute the code they encounter in the input, including substituting data for variables. ASP.Net manages the process. Neither ASP.Net nor PHP do anything with a database but they both support use of a database by the code.

    The most popular CMSs using Microsoft technology are DNN and Orchard.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Saturday, January 20, 2018 3:24 AM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 3:16 AM
  • Aston, when you are using Visual Studio, the proper workflow is you work on any pages of your website locally on your computer.

    Then you publish and new / revised pages up to the server.

    As you first develop your asp.net website on your pc, you are using the SQL Express database that exists on your pc.  When you first take that website live, you publish all your website files to the server of your webhost.  And as a separate process, you have to get your SQL Express website structure ported to your website also.

    Once you have done that, and people start using your website and submitting forms that add data to your online SQL database, that  becomes your main database, which is no longer identical to the one you ported up to the server from your pc (it has the same structure, but has different data).

    So, for example, if at some later time you want to add a page to your website that shows some particular data from your database, you would work on you local pc to create that page, and test it with you local SQL Express database to make sure it worked.  Then you would publish your new page to the webhost and test it to make sure it works with the online SQL database.

    The point I am trying to make is that your local copy of your website is the master copy, and everything on the live server is a copy of your local site except for the SQL Server database

    The online database has the same structure as your local database, but will have different data. Once you have ported your original sql express database to your website, you do not re-port or update the online database from your local copy.

    That being the case, you want to be really careful when you first design your database to make sure that you have thought about all the things you will be doing with it, what tables it will need, what relationships between the tables are needed. You want to get the structure correct right from the get-go.

    Otherwise, at some later time if you realize you need to add another table or whatever to your database, you can do it locally and test it, but then you have to use SQL Server Management Studio to open and modify your online database, and in so doing, you need to be very careful about not losing or messing up any existing data on it -- much better to have gotten it right the first time.

    It's a lot more complicated than working with an Access database. If you wanted to add a table to your online Access database, you would temporarily block anyone from adding new data, download the Access database to your pc, add the new table or whatever, transfer the updated Access database back to your website, remove the block, and you are done.

    Another point worth making -- you keep talking about the publicly and non-publicly addressable aspects of your website.  With ASP.NET, you can set up a members-only section of the site where users create an account with their own username and password, and a lot of the heavy-lifting coding to handle password management etc is already done for you via the asp.net login controls. You've a lot of work in front of you, and I'm sure this is

    More that you were asking ----


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Saturday, January 20, 2018 10:49 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 2:05 PM
  • Aston, You did not read my reply correctly.   Of course you can create forms.  But you have to create them - they are not created for you.  As I said more than once, you have to re-code your forms using different technology if you don't want to keep using your Classic ASP forms.

    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Sunday, January 21, 2018 1:41 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 6:54 PM
  • I was attempting to clarify the confusion about the ability to create forms. The confusion is the result of whether you can create a blank form and then fill it in with the fields and such. Kathy I believe was saying that the form won't have everything in it automatically but she was not saying that you cannot create a blank form and then modify it.

    I am not sure which post to reply to so I am just replying the whatever post is convenient.

    There is a difference between FrontPage and FrontPage extensions. I think I made the mistake of thinking you were saying FrontPage extensions when you were talking about FrontPage. Oh, well note that FrontPage does not exist in the server so when you talk about the server, that is FrontPage extensions, not FrontPage.

    To answer your question of whether you can do it all in Visual Studio, yes you can. You can use VS to do most everything you do in FP; there are some minor details about editing HTML that VS does not do but otherwise VS does what FP does plus more. And the new version of FP Extensions (for implementing a website) is called Web Deploy.

    As others have said, you can develop a website and test it in your local system. You can use the server provided with VS or you can use IIS in your system.

    There is much to learn. You probably should develop a requirements definition that explains what you need done. A requirements definition should not say anything about how to do it; that is done later. You should write something that is as complete as possible but not technical. A requirements definition is the only way to save time and money. Then after you have done that you can explore implementation in terms of what tools to use. Then when you are ready it might be better to hire someone to do most of the programming but I am sure you would want someone that will explain things and help you to understand the technical details.

    I will try to answer more questions but this discussion probably should be taken elsewhere. You can contact me at my website; I am Sam at my website. If you want all of use to continue this discussion then we should find someplace else to continue it.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Monday, January 22, 2018 8:36 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 8:57 PM
  • Ron, it might be possible to do what you want.  But I am not the person to explain it to you because I have never done it myself, and if I were to try it, I would be off to a sql forum asking questions to make sure I did it right.

    I know it is possible to export a copy of your online sql database and ftp the copy to your computer, and I expect that you could probably use SQL Server Management Studio to fire up that exported copy locally, safely make changes to it's structure (because you aren't modifying the online database while you are doing that). And if you got it working locally, you could probably export your updated local database, transfer it back to your online server, and restore the online database from it.

    Probably. Maybe. I don't know for sure. I've never tried it.  But if that all is possible, then it would seem to me to be possible to block people from entering new data from your website while you made such changes (safely keeping database backups all along the way), and unblock your site visitors when you have it all working with the new updated database.

    But you're going to have to ask someone who knows more about it than me.  And also, it's not like you cant open your online database and make changes to it if you know what you are doing. You probably could export a backup copy, temporarily block user input while you work on the online database with SQL Server Management Studio, and if it all works, unblock your users.  But if you messed it up, you could restore from the backup copy and then unblock you users and you are back where you started, but at least still in business.

    OK -- if I had to do what you want to do, those are approaches I would investigate  but like I said earlier, I would get some verification of how it should be done from someone who knows more about SQL databases than I do


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Sunday, January 21, 2018 1:22 PM
    Sunday, January 21, 2018 2:06 AM
  • Ron, Visual Studio is a complete design tool, you can make any kind of page you want with it, not just database-connected pages. It's capabilities in that regard are nearly identical to those of Expression Web -- the primary reason to use Visual Studio is that it has the excellent ability to work with databases in addition to virtually all the features that Expression Web has.

    You should have no concern using Visual Studio for everything.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers


    • Edited by ClarkNK Tuesday, January 23, 2018 2:36 PM typo
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Wednesday, January 24, 2018 3:13 AM
    Tuesday, January 23, 2018 2:35 PM
  • In any case, I thank you for your help and suggestions, and hope I have not overdone my welcome with this incredibly long thread.
    Ron

    No, not a problem. It's not as if we're overworked here anymore. And after reading this post it is clear that you will need much more than FP can offer. I will note that since you have worked with EW for several years, one thing that you will miss in VS is the elegant, easy to use design surface of EW.

    However, you don't really need to give it up. As it happens, round-trip editing with EW and VS is easy. You can even have the same file/page open in both at the same time. VS will automatically notify you when you come back to it that the file was changed by another program, but EW won't.

    There was a discussion of this years back, when MS employees were still hanging around, and after SP2 was released, one of them posted this:

    There is a hidden/unsupported feature in EW4 SP2 called the file watcher. You can only enable it via registry by creating an EnableFileWatcher key with value=1(dword) under HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Expression\Web\4.0 path.

    Or copy & paste below text into a .reg file and double click on it.
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Expression\Web\4.0] "EnableFileWatcher"=dword:00000001

    In a later post another guy had written up reg files to both enable and disable this feature, and zipped them up and made them available on his site. He no longer does, but I've put my copy up on OneDrive, so you can get it here:

    Enable/Disable File Watcher for EW4 SP2 - https://1drv.ms/f/s!AoKUv9k_swrpn3sGhu7jEIIdvS_K

    Once you download that and unzip it, double-click the enabling reg file. After that, you will be warned when you switch to EW from VS after editing the page and saving it, so you can reload the file and avoid stepping on your changes by saving the current (obsolete) EW version over it, and vice versa. This way you can do all the database heavy lifting in VS, and all the design work in EW. Best of both worlds!  ;-)

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Wednesday, January 24, 2018 7:02 AM
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Wednesday, January 24, 2018 5:21 PM
    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 6:58 AM
  • Ron, you don't have to "import" your Visual Studio work into Expression Web. You just open your project in Expression Web and save whatever work you do. You can use either program to open your work at any time, they are completely compatible.

    I know the pros in this forum find a little advantage in designing with Expression Web as opposed to Visual Studio, there are some things that are a bit niftier in Expression Web. But in the end, the pages don't look any "better" (or any different at all) for having been designed in EW versus VS.

    It's a matter of preference. Myself, since most of my pages interface with the database in one way or the other, I never bothered to switch to EW to create the ones that don't.

    Do whatever you find most convenient / easy for what you need to do.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 25, 2018 2:02 AM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 1:10 AM
  • 

    Thank you Scott.

    I have decided to create a sample FP website with specific .asp pages built for the purpose (hopefully) of having participating members of this and other discussion groups view and hopefully help me with VS and EW by suggesting steps (as help is needed) within each platform (EW and VS) to create my alternative VS and/or EW-built website as needed.

    I will even include a sample portion of one of the "apps" I've built in FP for my contractors to use, to ask specific questions about things I would like to add once I move over to VS and/or back to EW.

    From your reply, it seems as though you are suggesting that I create the .asp.net forms in VS, but import them into (what may turn out to be) easier-to-build and better looking web pages built in EW, as opposed to trying to do the whole shibang in VS?

    Am I correct about your suggestion?

    Yes, mostly. The idea of having "live" example pages, with typical functionality enabled, is an excellent idea. Since you have been around here so long, I imagine that you have seen us request people to "post a link," so that we can see what they have and what they are wanting to accomplish. I should note that you will probably have to modify or add to these pages as you work through the process, but being able to point to existing functionality (no matter how it was created in FP) and say "How can I do this using VS and SQL Server?" will be very helpful.

    However, there is no need to "import" anything. As stated in my previous message, you can literally open the same page in VS and EW simultaneously, and work on them at the same time, as long as you are careful to save the page when leaving one app and to reload it in the other when notified that another application has modified the file. This happens automatically in VS, and will also happen in EW if you enable the File Watcher as described in my last post.

    I tried to find a forum that is specific to VS Community, and found a forum called "Github", but as you can see, Sam doesn't seem to understand the logic of my rationally trying to locate a forum specific to VS Community (since that is the underlying program that I will be using).

    Even if I wasn't an "end-user" and were going to act as a total developer (although, I wouldn't hire me!) for someone else, I would still initially try to find the best program-specific support forum I could get my hands on if starting with a new program, such as VS.) 

    That said, If the asp.net forum is still considered to be the best forum for what I want to do in VS, I will go there instead.

    Well, actually, after going back and reading that remark, it would seem that he preferred to show how much more he knows than you and say that he was "surprised that you asked that," rather than actually taking the time to explain what GitHub is. He was right in that GitHub is not a forum. It is an open source collaborative development environment, a code repository, built upon the open source version control system Git. Here is a quick video intro to what GitHub is, and how it works for you. Also note the other helpful videos down the right side of that page.

    As it turns out, there are forums for both Git, the version control system, and GitHub, the collaborative development environment. The one for Git is here https://gitforums.org/, and for GitHub is here https://github.community/. A good introduction to Git, with tutorials, can be found here.

    Now, here's a little reality check. Although it is possible, quite easy, in fact, to work with your Access DB using VS, you should do that in a completely separate solution that you use to build your sample pages, because Access SQL is not the same as T-SQL (Transact SQL, the version used for Sybase and MSSQL DBs). I would be surprised  if anything that you create with VS based upon your underlying Access database would work with your eventual MSSQL Server database. The queries in the different SQL dialects are incompatible (see this).

    So, job one is going to be to get your current Access DB reimplemented as a MSSQL DB. I haven't done this, so I don't know if it works when targeting a SQL Server Express DB (which if I'm not mistaken is a file-based DB), but I found this solution at Experts Exchange. See if that will work for you.

    Now, while you're always welcome here, you're also going to need forums for the new systems you'll be learning and using. You can go to https://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/vstudio/en-US/home?category=visualstudio for the main Visual Studio forum, and note the subforums listed down the left side. Once you start working with T-SQL, you can go to https://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/sqlserver/en-us/home?forum=transactsql for help with that. And, of course, for the ASP.NET programming nitty gritty, you already know about forums.asp.net.

    So, there you go. Get that DB converted to SQL Server Express format, then create a solution (VS-speak for a project) that points to that DB. I see no point in working up a solution that uses the Access DB in VS (unless you just want to "practice" working with VS). Just use your current FP/Access lashup to create your example pages, then ask how to recreate them in VS using SQL Server Express.

    [EDIT] While researching and composing this omnibus reply I missed Kathy's post, with which I heartily concur. You're definitely going to need to understand both Web Forms and the ASP.NET that you will be programming them in. Gaining a general understanding of both is the basis of any ability to use them for data-driven Web application development.[/EDIT]

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Thursday, January 25, 2018 8:00 AM
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 25, 2018 12:12 PM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 7:06 AM
  • Web forms is one flavor of Asp.Net.  MVC is another.  (There are even a couple more.)  You need to know which flavor (or even combinations of flavors - but don't add more complexity than you need, so ignore that option for now) when you set up your project in VS.  Start reading from the link I gave you.  As  I said, you have a large learning curve ahead of you.

    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications


    • Edited by KathyW2 Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:23 PM
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:34 PM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:20 PM
  • Ron, some time back I was using Access 2000 for a volunteer website, and there was a simple setting at my host to allow the 32 bit version to run.

    Worth a quick question to your host.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Friday, January 26, 2018 10:39 PM
    Friday, January 26, 2018 9:55 PM
  • Well, I will address the last item first. I do not believe that you should start a new thread in this forum, unless it is clearly on-topic for the Expression Web forum, and it is not clearly a continuation of this discussion.

    If you ask such a question, in a new thread without all of the "backstory" contained here, newcomers to the thread will probably be making suggestions which have already been made and discussed here, and either rejected or accepted, with or without reservations and caveats. Granted that this thread has drifted, but there are still enough questions about using EW with Access, and using EW with VS, that we are still at least nominally on topic.

    If you do decide to start a new thread, be sure that it meets topicality requirements for this forum. Otherwise, simply continue here. We who have participated already know where we are in the discussion, while newcomers will be able to orient themselves by reading the precious discussion.

    Now, as you begin moving to a more modern, capable version of Access, you will want to post questions in a forum which is more germane to that subject, like the Access for Developers forum. They will be able to help you with questions about that process, and with any ongoing development with using Access for VS development (along with forums.asp.net, of course, particularly the Web Forms subsection).

    I would suggest that you start as soon as possible to convert your Access DB to SQL Server Express, not necessarily to begin production development, but to see if there are any issues involved in the conversion early enough that you find and resolve them before crunch time comes when moving to VS-and-SQL Server Express development. You might want to create a separate VM for the purpose (Win 7 Pro is available on eBay for $20 - $25 as an OS for the VM) as a sandbox while you're learning.

    To do the conversion, see Express Essentials: Migrating from Access 2007 to SQL Server Express, I have tested this procedure using the Upsizing Wizard available in Access 2007 and higher, up to the point of selecting the SQL Server Express DB to migrate to, which I don't have installed on my system. You will want to have at least one instance of SQL Server Express installed on your VM (if using) so that you can complete the migration process.

    Note that it offers to migrate "Indexes, Defaults, Validation rules and Table relationships, and DRI," but no mention is made of queries, and given the differences between Jet SQL and Transact-SQL, I would be surprised if your current complex, multi-field (255+ fields!) queries could be directly, and successfully, translated during the migration process. This is something that you will definitely want to know about early in the process, so that you can deal with it before it becomes necessary in the eventual VS-and-SQL Server Express production site implementation.

    Once you start working with SQL Server Express, and trying to address those query issues, you will want to start posting to the dedicated SQL Server Express forum. I noticed that as of this writing, the first non-sticky thread there is about the SQL Server Management Studio, which is where you will be doing your query building. I found an article about a SQL Server Express 2012 version download which would contain pretty much everything you might need for SQL Server Express development  (expand "Details" and note the "Express with Advanced Services" option).

    When you click the "Download" button you will be taken to a page where you select the option package you want to download. Get ENU\x64\SQLEXPRADV_x64_ENU.exe, which is the "Express with Advanced Services" package. Besides the other features, the key to this option is the SQL Server Management Studio Express, with which you will be using its Query Builder to rebuild your queries in T-SQL dialect. Here is an older article about the differences between SQL Server 2008 Management Studio and SQL Server Management Studio Express. It may be presumed that similar differences exist between later versions.

    It may be that later version downloads (SQL Server Express 2014, 2015, or 2016) also have those options; you will want to check before committing to one of them. Note that it is NOT necessary to install the very latest version of SQL Server Express, especially if you can't easily get everything you need in a later version. In fact, you should check with your host as to which versions of SQL Server Express he supports (not all do support SQL Server Express). If he does not, either find a host who does, or plan to eventually migrate up to a fully-fledged MSSQL DB on your host (may involve $$$), at which point (after the migration from SQL Server Express to MSSQL Server) the local DB becomes moribund and you must effect any structural modifications to the online MSSQL Server database.My own personal preference if I were in your shoes would be to find a host that offers SQL Server Express. There's enough paradigm shift already without having to also learn MSSQL Server administration on top of everything else. Just sayin'...

    So, there you are. I think that you now have all of the links that you will need to the necessary and germane forums, and to all of the assets that you will need begin practicing working with VS-and-SQL Server Express, and using SQL Server Management Studio Express, particularly the Query Builder. As I said, I believe that you should start that process ASAP, to find any problems before things become critical. Granted, you will be busy with bringing the Access side of things up to date, both 64-bitwise and version-wise, but once that is done and stable, you should immediately look to beginning the SQL Server Express migration as well, from your final version of Access to whichever version of SQL Server Express you decide upon. Happy learning!  ;-)

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Sunday, January 28, 2018 12:36 AM
    • Edited by paladyn Sunday, January 28, 2018 12:38 AM
    Sunday, January 28, 2018 12:12 AM
  • As Kathy said, you can pass data from the textbox of a first form to the textbox of a second form.  You can also put a condition on what gets loaded when the next page loads based on the value being passed.  You have pretty much unlimited flexibility with your VB code.

    Without knowing what you are trying to accomplish, it's hard to comment. But with your description of modifying queries as you go along I can't help but wonder if your database is set up in the best way for your job.  For example, it is possible to have a query bring up database results using the results of a previous query as the source. Maybe you already know that, maybe it doesn't apply -- hard to say.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Wednesday, January 31, 2018 2:41 PM
    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 2:37 PM

All replies

  • there is not really any diference they are the same., vB Express means visual studio express. you only need to make sure you are working with either vb.net or legacy vb(the old one).

    you can migrate using MySql DATABASE or i would recomend sql server express is free., you can use visual studio html editor and can power it up with some plugings like resharper to enhance the html design. but you could use mvc framework too to rapidly build the new page using this pattern.

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:11 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 2:17 AM
  • Sorry...I'm a little dense about this. 

    Will Visual Studio Express give me the ability to create a website for producing forms similar to the .asp forms that have been created in Frontpage, which currently update my Access database?

    I understand that the Access database will have to be migrated into a MySQL database, but I'm not sure of how Visual Studio (if it does this) will create forms (not necessariy .asp) to work with the MySQL database.

    Please advise

    Thursday, January 18, 2018 2:33 AM
  • First let's get the most significant issue resolved.

    You mention WordPress but you are not specific about its relevance. You also say FrontPage extensions, as if you use FrontPage extensions with WordPress. Of course you don't but it is not clear what the relevance is of all that.

    FrontPage extensions is dead. You cannot use it. The only choices I am aware of are FTP and Web Deploy. FTP does not do databases (except as files, not databases).

    There is something new called ASP.Net Core that works very differently but I know little about that.

    If you want to use your WordPress site then you might be limited to PHP. Is that what you want to do? Do you understand that if you want to use ASP.Net and languages such as C# then you can't use it with WordPress? So how is the WordPress site relevant? Assuming it is not then are you asking what to use for the other website? See ASP.NET Documentation for some help deciding which of the two versions of ASP.NET to use. And you can jump ahead to current technology if you use SQL Server and Entity Framework. Then if you have a hosting company that supports current technology then you will use Web Deploy.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info


    • Edited by Simple Samples Thursday, January 18, 2018 4:12 AM I forgot a link
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:11 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 4:10 AM
  • You are asking this on the Expression Web forum, so the first thing I'll point out is that EW not being supported by Microsoft doesn't mean it stops working,  The last version of EW4 is free, and works just fine.  It's just HTML/CSS, and whatever JavaScript and possibly asp.net you care to use, which does not change with EW not being updated anymore.

    However, neither EW or Visual Studio creates forms for you.  If you have a lot of classic ASP forms already in your site, you'll need to keep using them (which you can - Classic ASP still works), or rewrite them yourself if you intend to use a new scripting language.  If you do intend to stick with classic ASP, be aware that neither EW nor Visual Studio provide any intellisense for Classic ASP, and EW's built-in server does not run Classic ASP so you'd have to set up IIS OR IIS Express with Classic ASP to preview and test.

    Access is not the best choice for a website database, although if it's not causing you problems, you could keep using it.  Switching to SQL Server or another database makes technical sense, but is separate from your other question: you can keep the classic ASP and change databases, you can switch scripting languages and keep Access (although not recommended).


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Saturday, January 20, 2018 2:49 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 5:24 AM
  • Yes there are various interpretations of "support". People often equate "support" with "functional". Microsoft often says they are no longer supporting something but they also assure people it still works. FrontPage Extensions is an example of something that is generally not functional; most hosting companies don't offer it.

    I can confirm that Expression Web 4 works; I have been using it to edit web sites except I am learning to use Visual Studio to do that more than I did. VS is frustrating sometimes; the HTML editor does not have all the features that the Expression Web 4 editor has, such as searching in the design view and indenting (so we can create sub-lists).

    I don't know if VS would support a classic ASP web site but I would be surprised if it did not. We cannot create such a web site in VS but we can probably open one in VS that already exists. In Expression Web 4 we seem to be able to create classic ASP pages; the following is the "File" | "New" I see for Expression Web 4. Am I correct that "ASP" creates a classic ASP page?



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:12 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 6:48 AM
  • Sam:

    Thank you for your reply.

    By the way, it was the Microsoft Tech-Forum that sent me a link to this forum, which I did not realize was the Expressionweb Forum), so I apologize for that.

    As I am not just a "developer"(I know to use that term loosely with regards to myself) of my websites, I am also the end user, and perhaps it would help to give you a short synopsis of what I have been using my FrontPage site for.

    I already know and understand (and have for the last several years) that I will have to move over to something like MySQL, and that Frontpage itself is being phased out from many hosting platforms. Luckily for me, I have found a hosting company that remains committed to offering the FP extensions, but both them and I know full well that that will not last.

    It has, however worked out tremendously for me and my business, and has given me some breathing room as I have been able to further develop my core business while still successfully utilizing the functionality of Frontpage for now (as described below)

    In terms of my experience with Expressionweb:


    1- My main website was originally created through FP 2000 many moons ago, which encompassed 2 major things: A-The public side, which consisted of pages using graphics, text, etc. to drive the public to my land-based business.  B-The back-end, administrative side, which consisted of numerous privately-accessed .asp forms (created through the FrontPage Database wizard ) that added files to my Access 2000 database, updating and viewing file information, etc. Only registered clients would have access to such forms (for viewing only...I did not (and still do not) want public access to the database through the main website (regardless of which platform I use for that main website).

    2- Approximately 5 years ago, I installed Expressionweb, and recreated the public side of my website, which I initially built with the hope of replacing the FrontPage database functionality for the private side (as above). Instead of doing this all at once, the Expressionweb site was used entirely for the public side, inititially.

    To get me though the (then) upcoming learning curve of replacing my existing FP forms and database functionality through Expressionweb, I copied the FP database, forms, etc. that were left on the old FrontPage site, and turned it into a new, differently-named Frontpage site.

    I now had two sites running separately. One for the public side built with Expressionweb, the other for the private side, hosted separately. This has served my purpose very well, but I have always known that this was still just a temporary fix.

    Because I knew ExpressionWeb was also on the "doomed" list from Microsoft, I thought about the future and decided to go CMS (not wanting to someday constantly be told that "Expressionweb is dead", as I have heard so often with respect to Frontpage, and many times with a lot of sarcasm, which has not exactly helped) I opted to move from Expressionweb and set up the public, main site in Wordpress.

    Unfortunately, at the time I did not know that WordPress is a platform through which the type of database functionality I needed (regardless of what type of database or types of pages used) could not be emulated within Wordpress itself.

    So now I am faced with replacing the system that my second FrontPage web currently (and efficiently) does for me on the private, back-end side. I need a similar setup, where pages and forms are accessible through a website, and where some type of database can replace my Access 2000 database (hopefully through migration, not by re-doing it), and where I would probably have to recreate and/or replace all of the .asp forms that are currently on that 2nd Frontpage website  to accommodate the connection between the forms and that database (MYSQL, I assume).

    I have had a lot of terminology thrown at me, types of files, etc. But I have never taken the time to explain the basics of what I need and the practical use that my request needs to fulfill, which I am hoping will render a simpler, straightforward answer to those needs, which will be of more practical help.

    Again, as I am also the owner and developer of the underlying business, I have to look at things more on the practical side than just the technical side,  not just as a developer of a website. Not sure how that may sit with this forum, as I do not make a living through development, but by running the actual, underlying business associated with the website(s).

    However, I am hoping this will make it easier for you to make a recommendation for the right combination of software, programming, etc to replace what the Frontpage site does altogether

    I could likely do this using Expressionweb, but I want to make sure that, if I have to do all of this work replacing my existing Frontpage system for the purpose described above,  I want to give myself the best shot at the best decision for the future that will (most importantly) help my business ultimate succeed

    Looking forward to your suggestions.

    Ron

    Thursday, January 18, 2018 1:30 PM
  • Ya gotta love this forum. I just did a post and got the very explanatory message saying "Unexpected Error".

    No kidding. Is there such a thing as an Expected Error?? Anyway,  I did a screen grab so you can both see the post itself and also enjoy the lucid error message.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers


    • Edited by ClarkNK Thursday, January 18, 2018 1:55 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 1:55 PM
  • Clarke:

    Thanks. But does Visual Studio have a way(graphic interface?) to re-create my forms (including text and graphics), by hooking up (?) through that SSMS you mentioned to work with the suggested Sql Server Express (database?) or it is this performed (in Visual Basic) strictly through back-end coding?

    From what I know (in a limited way) .asp or the newer asp.net is a code or language that enables data-related information contained within a webpage to communicate with an underlying database and both read and update specific fields within that database. (I hope I got that right)

    And asp.net is a more secure type of page or language than the older .asp used in Frontpage?

    And that Sql Server Express will only read asp.net language, and not other recommended types of such language, such as .php?

    Because it seems that Frontpage was/is a totally integrated program, it's quite hard to understand some of the components and concepts associated with a replacement means of dealing with my back-end data information.

    In terms of high traffic, yes...this would be limited to non-public use, with much less transactional activity.

    Also, will this setup of using Visual Studio with the Sql Server Express (I'm assuming that this is a database replacement I can use instead of  Access?) limit me to using a Microsoft Server host, or will it be able to be hosted (the replacement system for my existing, 2nd Frontpage Website as described) on a Linux server?

    In terms of Sql Server Express being free, that may not matter to me, if there is something else that will give me more future features and universality, especially if I am going to go through a new learning curve, anyway. As well, if I'm going to drive myself crazy with such upgrading and learning curve stuff, I may as well go all the way. Unless that is not practical-sounding. Also, someone also recommended (to make it more complicated) Visual Basic (or Visual Studio) Express. What's up with that??? Thanks, Ron

    Thursday, January 18, 2018 2:40 PM
  • Aston I will try to take these questions in order

    Visual Studio has a toolbox from which you can drag textboxes (and other html things) onto your page (each page is actually a form), you can give each textbox and ID and you can save whatever is entered into textboxes into pre-arranged fields in your database.  So you can have a page with a bunch of textboxes filled out by users, who then can click a button and have their information added to the database.

    You can also drag things like a gridview onto your page, and have the data from your database displayed in that gridview.  Most of the VB back-end coding is done automatically for you. You can basically do everything (and more) that you could do with Frontpage.  Look at the tutorials under my signature to see how to do some of these things ( those tutorials were written years ago, so some aspects of them are out of date, but the basics are still good).  

    I don't know that asp.net is any more or less secure that classical asp.  Either way, if you are allowing users to input data that is going to your database, you have to take care to prevent users from adding malicious code (know as SQL injection) into your database, which can be done by restricting the characters that users can type into your textboxes. And you need to have some method of keeping bots out which can be done in several ways (captchas are a common way).

    Asp.net and php are two different flavors of code that can be used.  Asp.net requires a Windows server and php uses unix.  An advantage of asp.net for someone like yourself (or me) is that it does so much of the background code for you via the (wonderful) asp.net controls you just have to drag onto the page.

    Visual Studio Express, Visual Web Developer Express are basically referring to the same thing, I think it may be referred to as Visual Studio Community these days.  Anyway, the Express term denotes the free version. There's no need to pay for anything beyond the express versions.

    Honestly, the hardest part of getting started is figuring out which of all the versions MS offers are the proper ones to download. I have never moved to the Community version yet myself, but I suspect the downloads these days will automatically get you SQLExpress, Visual Studio Express and SQLServer Management Studio Express.

    Here's where you start: Microsoft Site

    Have fun.  BTW, the asp.net forum is where you can always get any question answered. You will need that.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:12 PM
    Thursday, January 18, 2018 7:26 PM
  • Thank you so much Clarke. I have to say how much I appreciated that you had always taken the time to give me the most concise, patient non-sarcastic replies when I was using Expressionweb and was even then admittedly "dazed and confused" about all of this.

    I think you had suggested this route (Visual Studio or Visual Basics back then, which I started to explore, but abandoned, once I started with WordPress and found a host that was willing & able to maintain the FP extensions on their windows server.

    Is there a forum you can recommend that is specific to Visual Studio Express and one for Sql Server Express specifically?

    Ron



    Thursday, January 18, 2018 8:00 PM
  • Ya gotta love this forum. I just did a post and got the very explanatory message saying "Unexpected Error".

    No kidding. Is there such a thing as an Expected Error?? Anyway, I did a screen grab so you can both see the post itself and also enjoy the lucid error message.

    That is one of a few reasons why I often compose replies in another program. I have a HTML file that I use as a scratchpad for posts that I edit in Expression Web 4. Another option is Tidy or something like it.

    An expected error would be something like a timeout or for files if the file does not exist.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Thursday, January 18, 2018 9:29 PM
  • "and php uses unix"

    Correction:  Windows runs PHP just fine.  I have, literally, never had a Windows hosting plan that didn't also support PHP.


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Friday, January 19, 2018 1:29 AM
    Friday, January 19, 2018 1:26 AM
  • Correction:  Windows runs PHP just fine.  I have, literally, never had a Windows hosting plan that didn't also support PHP.

    That is correct. I have even compiled (built) the PHP compiler using Visual Studio. I know there are peculiarities for the Windows version of PHP but for users of the PHP compiler they are essentially the same.

    I was going to say this in a bigger reply but at least I don't need to include this. I will write another response soon.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Friday, January 19, 2018 1:43 AM
  • Expression Web will let you create classic ASP files, but, as I said, you can't preview them using EW's development server, or get intellisense help in creating them. You hand code them on your own, and use IIS with ASP enabled to preview them.

    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    Friday, January 19, 2018 8:02 AM
  • Is there a forum you can recommend that is specific to Visual Studio Express and one for Sql Server Express specifically

    The ASP.NET forum I mentioned is the place for Visual Studio questions.

    There is also a SQL server forum here but I think most of the questions you will run into will get answered in the ASP.NET forum. Also, Google is your friend. There are a number of SQL-related forums (just Google "mssql forums").  And I have had good luck Googling how to do particular things like, for example, "migrate sql database to new server".

    When I left Frontpage, I started with a Scott Mitchell book "Sam's Teach Yourself ASP.NET  2.0 in 24 hours" that I found very useful. I'm certain there are later versions of the now-old book.

    Two other reference books I like are Murach's "ASP.NET 3.5 with VB 2008" and SQLServer 2008".  Again those have been around a while, and there may be more recent versions.

    Have fun.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Friday, January 19, 2018 2:33 PM
    Friday, January 19, 2018 2:22 PM
  • Asp.net and php are two different flavors of code that can be used.  Asp.net requires a Windows server and php uses unix.

    PHP is a CGI that includes a compiler. I will explain CGI later. ASP.Net is a CGI but is not a compiler. For ASP.Net C# and VB.Net are usually used for the code.

    The Microsoft world has really changed in the past few years. Microsoft has made many improvements in portability. The purchase of XAMARIN has introduced many new things. The latest version of ASP.Net is called ASP.Net Core and is open-source and can be used in most servers. See Publishing an ASP.NET Core website to a cheap Linux VM host - Scott Hanselman for one article about using ASP.NET Core in Linux. An ASP.NET Core website is very strange; it works differently from what we are accustomed to. The home page is something strange. There are many "Core" things, such as .Net Core for desktop applications and Entity Framework Core.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Friday, January 19, 2018 8:35 PM
  • However, neither EW or Visual Studio creates forms for you.  If you have a lot of classic ASP forms already in your site, you'll need to keep using them (which you can - Classic ASP still works), or rewrite them yourself if you intend to use a new scripting language.

    I assume you are familiar with ASP.Net and perhaps this should be clarified in terms of what you are calling forms. In ASP.NET we can create Web Forms as in the following VS new item window.

    And ASP and ASP.Net cannot be combined within the same site (or at least the same application within a site).



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info


    Friday, January 19, 2018 8:42 PM
  • Thanks, Sam.
    One question...
    Does VS work like a CMS, (contact management system like Wordpress, where the elements are stored on a server, including the newly-create forms in asp.net and the database (SQLExpress, in this case, as Clarke has suggested) that is associated with the asp.net forms you create in VS) or is everything created and "put together" first on your computer and then "Published" in some way up to your hosted domain site?
    Ron

    Friday, January 19, 2018 11:35 PM
  • You can read a short explanation by me of CMSs at What a Content Management System Is. As I indicate, there is not a clear definition of what a CMS is.

    To answer this recent question, VS is the latter. VS does nothing during the execution of anything except for the debugger. Let me back up a bit.

    I began using the Microsoft C compiler before it supported C++. That was back in the DOS days. Later Microsoft developed Visual Basic. There was a DOS version of VB. We could purchase the C/C++ compiler separately from VB. When you purchased either one you got an IDE with it. The IDE supported editing and compiling programs. It had projects and workspaces. Projects are a combination of source files that are typically compiled together. Workspaces were a collection of projects. Then Microsoft developed a Windows version of their IDE and called it Visual Studio. The point I am getting at is that originally VS did not do much more than editing and compiling. It had (and still has) projects; workspaces are now called solutions. An over-simplified explanation of what VS is is that it is used to create executables. VS does nothing in the executables. VS supports development of all software that Windows supports, from desktop applications to device drivers and web sites and servers, any kind of server. VS has been enhanced to even support Linux development but I don't know if that includes all Linux software, I doubt that. For a long time VS did not support Java but supposedly it does now.

    A CMS provides a way for developers to create pieces of web sites that can be used like packages by non-developers. It includes editors specific to it for editing the pieces and an execution system for implementing everything.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Saturday, January 20, 2018 1:11 AM
  • Sam:

    Sorry, but I'm afraid you've gone completely over my head with this... As in my previous life I was in the music production business, I will give you my stock statement: "Hey...I'm just a simple country songwriter!"  

    To simplify my question:

    1- Will I wind up being able to somehow create forms (I guess asp.net) in VS that will update the Sql Server Express database(into which my access database will have been migrated) and pages that will be created through maybe a combination of html/css, etc. which would be privately accessible to certain users, so that I can replace the current system I have developed in Frontpage for managing the back-end part of my business?

    2-Changing from what I have currently developed (database and related forms)with Frontpage to such a replacement is a big deal for me, and I want to do this as quickly and easily as possible with the right solution so that my business will not suffer, and hopefully be enhanced, instead.

    I am unfortunately unfamiliar with such terms as Compiler, C++, IDE, executables, etc. but I am not afraid of learning curves, as long as I wind up selecting the right combination of software/programs that will get me where I need to go.

    My question regarding CMS was simply to find out whether work performed in VS is done so where all of the elements, including the database are housed on the host server(as is Wordpress) ("Cloud-Based"), or whether all work is first performed in VS on the computer and later published or uploaded to the hosted domain.

    As mentioned previously, because Frontpage was/is such a fully integrated program, where it not only provided basic web page development, but also .asp pages that update and display info from Access databases, within which the whole "enchilada" was housed under one roof.

    As I have already solved the publicly-accessed, web-page development issue by hosting my main website site on WordPress, I now have to replace the system I was using with a separate, Frontpage web that deals with my database "stuff". Create similar forms that update the database that takes over from the Access database, etc. and have whatever that is housed within a separately hosted website address.

    Is a move to VS and Sql Server Express going to somehow enable me to accomplish this?

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Saturday, January 20, 2018 3:03 AM
  • Since this is a reply to many of the previous posts I will post it as a reply to the original post.

    I don't understand why you say that FrontPage Extensions does database stuff. I assume it does help with databases more than I am aware of but I doubt that it does as much as you think. It is confusing for me since no one else has said anything relevant to that.

    Since this question asks about Visual Basic I am surprised that you want to use Linux (Apache) servers. Are you sure that is possible? I am not sure but as far as I know there is limited or no support of VB in Apache or for Apache.

    See SQL Server Downloads. Ignoring the purchase version (that you can get a trial for) you have the choice of either a Developer version or an Express edition. All of that however is not especially relevant if you are using SQL Server in a website host. See SQL Server 2016 Express LocalDB; it is (I think) installed automatically with Visual Studio. I know that Visual Studio includes a SQL Server called LocalDB. So you can do SQL Server development immediately after installing VS 2017 Community. After installing VS we can also install the developer edition of SQL Server and that is virtually the same as the full SQL Server. As far as I know you can use MySQL but if you want to use VB then MySQL probably does not offer much advantage.

    Then there is Azure. You can use an Azure database from essentially anywhere there is an internet connection, including desktop applications; not just websites.

    Whether you use MySQL, SQL Server or Azure, you can use Entity Framework to do database programing. You can use EF for websites and for desktop applications.

    Your description of your private website indicates that you should consider using a web service. "REST" is a type of web service. A web service resides in a website but can be used from anywhere an internet connection can be used. It can be used by websites and by desktop applications. All popular operating systems and languages and browsers support web services (at least REST web services). See JSONPlaceholder - Fake online REST API for developers; it is as an example of web services. In that page if you click on the link for users then you will get back a JSON object of an array of users. Usually you would do that in your program; you can write a Windows Forms or a WPF or ASP.Net or JavaScript application that sends the request and gets results back. A web service can update a database (if the developer writes the code to do that). See Online REST Web Service Demo for another description and demos. See JSON Webservice for an actual useful web service that provides geographical information. There are other web services, such as Google Maps web services that are free but require a key and many that we must pay for.

    ASP and ASP.Net have enhanced versions of most HTML elements. ASP.Net can bind C# and VB.Net fields to fields in the web page. ASP.Net does not do database stuff; database stuff can be done in ASP.Net code in ASP.Net pages.

    PHP, ASP and ASP.Net are a CGI. The HTML "Form" tag can use a CGI to process the data from the form. When a Submit button in a form is pressed the data can be sent to the server and processed by a CGI. A CGI is a program that developers can write. The CGI can process the data and the results can be shown in another HTML page. Both PHP and ASP.Net are CGI applications (I assume that performance is enhanced by improving the way a CGI is processed but the general concept is the same). PHP includes a compiler; ASP.Net does not. For ASP.Net the C# and VB.Net languages are usually the language used for ASP.Net, but otherwise ASP.Net and PHP are very much alike in what they do. Both of them read in a specified page, such as a ".php" for PHP and ".aspx" for ASP.Net, process it and produce a HTML file out. They execute the code they encounter in the input, including substituting data for variables. ASP.Net manages the process. Neither ASP.Net nor PHP do anything with a database but they both support use of a database by the code.

    The most popular CMSs using Microsoft technology are DNN and Orchard.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Saturday, January 20, 2018 3:24 AM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 3:16 AM
  • Sam,

    I am very familiar with Asp.Net.  Creating a webform page does not create the form.  You have to do it, either with existing controls that can do a lot for you  (ListView, etc.), or with individual pieces (textboxes, etc.), and you need to wire them up to do what you want with the data, from sending it in email to storing it in a database, or other.  That is what I mean by VS doesn't create the form for you, and the original poster would have to recreate them to replicate what the current Clasic ASP forms do now.


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications


    • Edited by KathyW2 Saturday, January 20, 2018 1:57 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 1:53 PM
  • Aston, when you are using Visual Studio, the proper workflow is you work on any pages of your website locally on your computer.

    Then you publish and new / revised pages up to the server.

    As you first develop your asp.net website on your pc, you are using the SQL Express database that exists on your pc.  When you first take that website live, you publish all your website files to the server of your webhost.  And as a separate process, you have to get your SQL Express website structure ported to your website also.

    Once you have done that, and people start using your website and submitting forms that add data to your online SQL database, that  becomes your main database, which is no longer identical to the one you ported up to the server from your pc (it has the same structure, but has different data).

    So, for example, if at some later time you want to add a page to your website that shows some particular data from your database, you would work on you local pc to create that page, and test it with you local SQL Express database to make sure it worked.  Then you would publish your new page to the webhost and test it to make sure it works with the online SQL database.

    The point I am trying to make is that your local copy of your website is the master copy, and everything on the live server is a copy of your local site except for the SQL Server database

    The online database has the same structure as your local database, but will have different data. Once you have ported your original sql express database to your website, you do not re-port or update the online database from your local copy.

    That being the case, you want to be really careful when you first design your database to make sure that you have thought about all the things you will be doing with it, what tables it will need, what relationships between the tables are needed. You want to get the structure correct right from the get-go.

    Otherwise, at some later time if you realize you need to add another table or whatever to your database, you can do it locally and test it, but then you have to use SQL Server Management Studio to open and modify your online database, and in so doing, you need to be very careful about not losing or messing up any existing data on it -- much better to have gotten it right the first time.

    It's a lot more complicated than working with an Access database. If you wanted to add a table to your online Access database, you would temporarily block anyone from adding new data, download the Access database to your pc, add the new table or whatever, transfer the updated Access database back to your website, remove the block, and you are done.

    Another point worth making -- you keep talking about the publicly and non-publicly addressable aspects of your website.  With ASP.NET, you can set up a members-only section of the site where users create an account with their own username and password, and a lot of the heavy-lifting coding to handle password management etc is already done for you via the asp.net login controls. You've a lot of work in front of you, and I'm sure this is

    More that you were asking ----


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Saturday, January 20, 2018 10:49 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 2:05 PM
  • Kathy: If I can't create forms within EW or Visual Studio...Perhaps I'm not asking the question the right way...again, because everything is/was incorporated into one program with FP, I need to replace the functionality that FP gave me with regards to creating web pages/forms  (These were .asp pages where you could add text and graphics that would update and display fields from within tables and queries that were in my Access Database.

    When I changed over to hosting my main site using Expressionweb several years ago, I was told that going to VB (or was it VS) would be a better solution for re-creating the forms that had been created in FP, and that it would be best to migrate my access database over to an SQL/MySQL or a MySQL Server Express database, and that whatever forms that would be re-created in VS would be asp.net, instead of the older.asp (classic?) that the FP database wizard created.

    You mention that classic .asp still works, but with Frontpage hosting being phased out altogether, I would have to find another way of creating and viewing such pages, so that would not make sense. In terms of re-creating what Frontpage does/has done for me...I am resigned to the fact that I will have to recreate all of my .asp pages  to asp.net or whatever will be easiest and more universally hosted along with an sql-type database), but I am confused about what program or system to use to recreate pages that will include text, graphics and forms that will update the underlying database (into which my access database will be migrated).

    I am, however confused when you tell me that I won't be able to create forms within VS (or do you mean that I would have to use VS to create pages (with embedded asp.net forms,)similar to the way pages were created in EW, as opposed to the way the FP wizard created .asp pages? I am not sure if I am asking this question the right way,
    Ron

    Saturday, January 20, 2018 3:24 PM
  • Aston, You did not read my reply correctly.   Of course you can create forms.  But you have to create them - they are not created for you.  As I said more than once, you have to re-code your forms using different technology if you don't want to keep using your Classic ASP forms.

    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Sunday, January 21, 2018 1:41 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 6:54 PM
  • Okay..so to be clear...Will there be tools (as there wer in EW) to create style sheets, css, etc. for the creation of the asp.net pages that will connect with the sql server express mentioned (into which my access tables and queries have been migrated?)Note: One of the issues I face now is that my queries and tables are getting too big for the limitations in Access 2000 as well as FP(max. 250 fields per table, etc.) I assume that later versions of Access may not be so limited, but it doesn't matter to me. I am already resigned to changing over to a more efficient and flexible type of database (as long as it is not too messy to migrate over from Access.)

    If the answer is yes, then the only other question I would like answered is whether I will be working in VS and the SQL database on my computer and then "publishing" up or uploading all files as was done with both Frontpage and Expressionweb, or does the host server house everything (db, scripts, style sheets created for web pages, graphics etc.) where all edits, etc. are performed within a "cloud-based" environment, similar to a Content Management System like WordPress?

    I almost changed the way I asked the question to you,(as I kind of actually thought that you meant that the program doesn't create things "for me" and that I would have to be the "creator" (but neglected to change the way I asked it. Sorry about that. Just wanted to confirm that all tools needed for the building of such pages/forms are included in VS.

    Unfortunately, learning database-related terminology was simply not an issue when using Frontpage, any more than style sheets, css etc. However, I had to learn in these things in order to have hosted my main site using ExpressionWeb for a 2-3 year period, so at least I know I'm not a total moron.

    I have been pressing for a few simple questions to be answered so that I can feel confident in taking on the right system to replace the administrative end of my business (currently run with my other FP website).

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Thanks, Ron


    Saturday, January 20, 2018 8:19 PM
  • Clarke..

    Sorry... I missed your reply.

    I had tried to contact you through your website, but it produced an error message when I tried. My name and contact info is within your system, as I had registered many moons ago. Would it be possible for you to contact me for a quick question. You can use the email stored. Thanks,
    Ronnie Kartman
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 8:24 PM
  • No..it is exactly what I was asking. As it is obvious that you have the most personal experience with FP, you explained it quite well. The only question I have is: You mentioned that it is best to "get it right" when creating the sql databse. However, that will be impossible, as so much of what I am doing is pretty complex and growing, where forms (currently using fp) as well as tables and queries, formulas in queries, etc are constantly evolving.

    It sounds like what you are saying is that the structure of the SQL database gets developed on the computer, but that once it is uploaded/installed on the server, I won't be able to easily make structural changes to the db on the computer then upload and overwrite the online db structure?

    Will I not be able to download (copy) new files or updated file information (data) from the server-side database, then make changes to the structure on my computer and then re-upload and overwrite the old structure and (overwrite the existing data info with the copied computer-based data?

    Saturday, January 20, 2018 8:41 PM
  • I was attempting to clarify the confusion about the ability to create forms. The confusion is the result of whether you can create a blank form and then fill it in with the fields and such. Kathy I believe was saying that the form won't have everything in it automatically but she was not saying that you cannot create a blank form and then modify it.

    I am not sure which post to reply to so I am just replying the whatever post is convenient.

    There is a difference between FrontPage and FrontPage extensions. I think I made the mistake of thinking you were saying FrontPage extensions when you were talking about FrontPage. Oh, well note that FrontPage does not exist in the server so when you talk about the server, that is FrontPage extensions, not FrontPage.

    To answer your question of whether you can do it all in Visual Studio, yes you can. You can use VS to do most everything you do in FP; there are some minor details about editing HTML that VS does not do but otherwise VS does what FP does plus more. And the new version of FP Extensions (for implementing a website) is called Web Deploy.

    As others have said, you can develop a website and test it in your local system. You can use the server provided with VS or you can use IIS in your system.

    There is much to learn. You probably should develop a requirements definition that explains what you need done. A requirements definition should not say anything about how to do it; that is done later. You should write something that is as complete as possible but not technical. A requirements definition is the only way to save time and money. Then after you have done that you can explore implementation in terms of what tools to use. Then when you are ready it might be better to hire someone to do most of the programming but I am sure you would want someone that will explain things and help you to understand the technical details.

    I will try to answer more questions but this discussion probably should be taken elsewhere. You can contact me at my website; I am Sam at my website. If you want all of use to continue this discussion then we should find someplace else to continue it.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Monday, January 22, 2018 8:36 PM
    Saturday, January 20, 2018 8:57 PM
  • The volatility of your data and procedures makes it more important that the database design be as optimal as possible.

    There is nothing in your local system or that can be in your local system that makes it easier to modify the database structure except that in you local system you can have test data that can be manipulated with less care about what happens to it. It is the production status of you online data that can require more work, if nothing more than the requirement to be careful.

    Large companies might have a test version of their websites. For example Yahoo might create a test version and call it "beta" or "staging" or something else that most people won't even know about. Businesses typically have "testing", "staging" and "production" versions of their software.

    As for changing the database, Entity Framework supports Migrations as in Entity Framework Code First Migrations with an existing database. You seem to be ignoring what I say about Entity Framework but when you ask your questions about databases in a database forum they will be more likely to say to use Entity Framework than people are saying here. There is a lot to learn about Entity Framework but it will save you time later. You should at least get a book about database design and possibly database system development using Microsoft technologies. You should understand database normalization; the Wikipedia is one place to get an idea of what database normalization is but you should get a good book to actually learn about it. There are basic concepts such as that that have been a part of relational databases since their initial design. E. F. Codd invented relational databases. Christopher J. Date's book An Introduction to Database Systems has sold well over 700,000 copies and he has written other database books; I am sure many database experts will suggest reading a Chris Date book about databases. It will really help for you to understand database concepts. For databases you should ask in a database forum at least.

    In the software industry there is something called implementation / deployment / promotion / release; that is four words that usually mean the same thing in this context. Software people tend to say "deploy" or "promote". You can read a book about software design that explains that or find a relevant website that explains concepts such as that. Forums for the Business/Systems Analyst might help. There is a big list of links in Systems Analysis Interesting Web Sites List.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Saturday, January 20, 2018 10:42 PM
  • Ron, it might be possible to do what you want.  But I am not the person to explain it to you because I have never done it myself, and if I were to try it, I would be off to a sql forum asking questions to make sure I did it right.

    I know it is possible to export a copy of your online sql database and ftp the copy to your computer, and I expect that you could probably use SQL Server Management Studio to fire up that exported copy locally, safely make changes to it's structure (because you aren't modifying the online database while you are doing that). And if you got it working locally, you could probably export your updated local database, transfer it back to your online server, and restore the online database from it.

    Probably. Maybe. I don't know for sure. I've never tried it.  But if that all is possible, then it would seem to me to be possible to block people from entering new data from your website while you made such changes (safely keeping database backups all along the way), and unblock your site visitors when you have it all working with the new updated database.

    But you're going to have to ask someone who knows more about it than me.  And also, it's not like you cant open your online database and make changes to it if you know what you are doing. You probably could export a backup copy, temporarily block user input while you work on the online database with SQL Server Management Studio, and if it all works, unblock your users.  But if you messed it up, you could restore from the backup copy and then unblock you users and you are back where you started, but at least still in business.

    OK -- if I had to do what you want to do, those are approaches I would investigate  but like I said earlier, I would get some verification of how it should be done from someone who knows more about SQL databases than I do


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Sunday, January 21, 2018 1:22 PM
    Sunday, January 21, 2018 2:06 AM
  • B-The back-end, administrative side, which consisted of numerous privately-accessed .asp forms (created through the FrontPage Database wizard ) that added files to my Access 2000 database, updating and viewing file information, etc. Only registered clients would have access to such forms (for viewing only...I did not (and still do not) want public access to the database through the main website (regardless of which platform I use for that main website).

    Ron, sorry I'm coming late to the discussion, but I have a question that may bear on the issue. I may have misapprehended what you are doing from reading the thread, particularly the part quoted above, but my understanding is that 100% of the data-driven pages on the public-facing siteare only viewed (and not editedorsubmitted, including by registered users), and that they (and some private backend-only pages) are only used administratively (backend) by you to make changes to the public-facing (frontend) online pages, and to perform administrative tasks essential to the running of the business and Web site. Oh, and that only you will be accessing the database at any time (other than viewing of some forms by registered users). Is that correct?

    If that is correct, then the resolution may be far simpler than the suggestions that I have seen so far.

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    Sunday, January 21, 2018 9:11 AM
  • Good advice. Thanks
    Sunday, January 21, 2018 1:22 PM
  • Good advice. Thanks

    ???

    Umm... Ron, was that meant to respond to my reply? I didn't give any advice yet. I asked you a question. If you don't mind, could you please answer the question I asked? It may result in a relatively easy and straightforward resolution to your issue. Thank you.

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    Monday, January 22, 2018 4:35 AM
  • Scott:  Sorry, I think I replied to the wrong person. I probably should not have mentioned my main Wordpress website, as I thought it would explain my business better, but I think it makes it more confusing.

    The front page website and the Wordpress website are two separately-hosted domains and are, for all practical purpose "unconnected." There are .asp pages on the Frontpage website where the public can view database-driven information only. Then there are .asp pages that are privately-accessed and are used for updating records in the database. Regardless of which system I use to re-create the .asp forms built by the FP wizard (asp.net, etc.) , I will definitely have to jump to a more powerful database(SQL Server Express, etc.)...I am already resigned to that. I hope this answers your question. Thanks, Ron

    Monday, January 22, 2018 5:35 AM
  • Ron, why on earth do you think that you will have to "jump to a more powerful database?" From your description of the site, there is no reason whatsoever that Access could not handle your requirements into any foreseeable future that I can imagine for your use. Seriously!

    Access was designed as and intended for use as a departmental database for use in large corporations, and as the principal database for small to mid-size companies. It can easily handle up to more than a hundred simultaneous users with full CRUD access (Create, Read, Update, Delete), and can even more easily serve hundreds of users who are hitting it for display-only purposes. You do not need to move from Access, even if you decide to change publishing methods or hosting providers.

    Every single provider that supports SQL Server Express also supports Access. In fact, many Linux servers that do not support the FPSE or SQL Server Express do support Access databases.  Unlike the more powerful database systems, Access is file-based. Everything is contained within the .mdb file, so "publishing" database changes means simply transferring the .mdb file up to the server. There's no need to involve the host, or a "SQL Server Management System," or anything else.

    Here's what I'm trying to get across to you. I do NOT believe that you have to leave FrontPage, or Access either. What you DO have to do is ditch the FPSE (FrontPage Server Extensions). There's a difference. The FPSE are an extension, but are not the core of FrontPage. They simply provide extended functionality to FrontPage. To be able to continue using FrontPage, and Access, you need to do three things.

    First, stop editing online, if that's what you are doing now. Live editing requires the FPSE, so you are going to have to stop that and publish your current site down to your hard drive. Do all of your editing, database manipulation, and page creation and modification locally, then publish your changes up to the remote server. This is actually, no shit, the recommended workflow used by professional Web developers everywhere.

    Second, to do this you are obviously going to have to start publishing your site via FTP. This is offered by 100% of providers, and will never be in danger of rescission, so once you've set FTP up, and sorted out your site, you will be able to manage your site, knowing to publish only the new and changed pages. "Sorting out" your site will take you some time, and will involve determining which pages need to be published up to the public-facing Web, and which are used only by you for backend database administration, and need not ever be published to the Web.

    Here's the thing, Ron—the Access database functionality is not tied to the FPSE. Once a page is created, with new forms, etc., FP saves it as a standard .asp page. As long as any changes to the attached database are published along with the .asp page(s) (using plain old FTP), they will function just fine without FPSE getting involved. That means that you can work locally on your data-driven pages, doing everything that you have always done, then simply publishing those to the Web that need to go up, along with the latest .mdb file, and keeping the private pages on your local machine.

    The only caveat is that the Registration Wizard requires the FPSE. So, you'll have to figure out a way to register your new registered users and to grant them, and existing users, access to the restricted pages once registered. However, I would be absolutely amazed if someone hadn't developed standard asp solutions for registration and login that you can adapt for your site.

    And that brings up the third thing—you're going to have to go through your site and make sure that you are not using any of the features that do require the FPSE. To help you do that, here is a list of the features that require the extensions, and here is the official list from Microsoft. Note in that first reference that the reason they were dropping support was that CPanel, their Web administration tool, had dropped support in the latest version, one of the several valid reasons why support is being terminated. Once you have scrubbed any features like hit counters, nested subwebs, etc., your pages' functionality will no longer be dependent upon the extensions.

    Anyway, yes, this will take some time. But it will take nowhere near the time it would take to migrate your site to an SQL database-driven site, and to learn the underlying program language necessary to create and update its functionality, as well as learning Transact-SQL. And when you're finished, you will have almost the exact same workflow as you have now, with the one change that you will now work locally and only publish that which must go up.

    You're probably going to have questions, and that's OK. Many of the people here have much more extensive, and recent, experience with FP than I have, and can no doubt help you out with that end, while everyone still participating here has extensive experience with EW, and can help you if there are any aspects that you wish to migrate to EW. You might also want to search and see if there are any active FP forums, although at this late date I kinda doubt it. If you search on "migrate frontpage," though, you'll probably find multiple sites which instructions on which elements to eliminate, and even suggestions for what to replace them with.

    Anyway, you're going to want to go through your site and start making an inventory of what you need to change to start the migration away from FPSE dependency, taking the recommendations above into account. You're also going to want to note which pages need to be published, and which can simply be maintained locally to support your local backend Web.

    Anyone here can tell you that I usually advise people that they must learn HTML and CSS. However, you have absolutely no pretension, or intention, to being a Web developer. You are a businessman who happens to have an FP Web site as an integral part of your business, and need help in maintaining that functionality in the face of the possible (probable) loss of the extensions. I believe that this solution accomplishes that with the least grief and disruption to you or your business. ;-)

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    Monday, January 22, 2018 9:22 AM
  • Ron, I agree with what Scott is saying. I was under the impression that you had the kind of high site traffic that was making Access worrisome.  If that is not the case, absolutely stick with Access; it is so much easier to work with.

    Getting away from the FP Extensions you still need to do.  And about the only thing those Frontpage wizards did that takes a little extra fiddling with asp.net is connecting newly submitted data to your database.  That is easily accomplished with the FormView or DetailsView control in Insert mode especially since you already have your Frontpage database set up. There's lots of tutorials on how to do that, and I think that is the "setting up the form" part that you have been worried about.

    So open Visual Studio, start with a new empty website, put a copy of your Access Database in the App_Data folder, create a test page, drag a Gridview onto the page and follow the wizard steps to bring up data from that database. You will be surprised how simple it is.

    Then drag a FormView onto the page (read a tutorial somewhere if need be), make sure it is set to use the Insert Item template and you will be surprised how easy it is to set up a page to enter data into your database.

    Once you have successfully done those two things, you will know how to do anything (and more) with your database than you were able to do with the Frontpage Wizards.

    Of course you need to do a bit of reading on using VS so you understand setting up your test website with code-behind pages.  But it's not as hard as you might think. And easy to play around with as you learn and it won't be long until you will feel comfortable that you could re-create your site in asp.net if you want to.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    Monday, January 22, 2018 1:46 PM
  • Scott:



    Thank you for spending the time to update me with the FP info. Here are a few
    questions that I must ask.



    1- In the two links you provided, the articles refer to Access 2002 (I am using
    Access 2000) My version of FP is 2000, as mentioned.

    2- If the FPSE are removed, will my private users still be able to update
    fields online (in both tables and queries) that are displayed on the forms?
    Will I be able to add new records online?

    3- As also mentioned. the field limitation per table in Access still remains at
    255 (at least through Access 2007). As I now have more need to go beyond that
    limitation, I need to have a database that can handle more fields in a table
    and a query.<o:p></o:p>

    4-In addition (as also
    mentioned), FrontPage limits the amount of fields that are transacted
    (updated) for any given .asp page. This is also too limiting for my
    progressing needs.


    5- Although I am primarily an end-user, I have had to be a
    "developer" for my own business. It was constantly suggested to me on
    this forum that EW (through which I had initially re-created my hosted main
    website before moving it over to a CMS platform) that the database solution would
    best be handled through a VS solution with asp.net and a better
    solution for the database would be upping to MySQL (or some simpler version of
    it).

    While I did manage to learn about css, style sheets, etc. through some online
    tutorials that enabled me to host an EW-built site for a couple of years, until
    I decided to move it over to WordPress (as there was no longer a need to bundle
    the database functionality with the non-database public-side of my main website
    the way FP worked (as the database-related functionality is currently being
    handled by the other, separate FP website I built (as mentioned).



    As the secondary hosted, Front-Page 2000 domain (as mentioned) has been
    extremely effective for me until recently, I got lazy in terms of making that
    move to VS, as my hosting company (for the FP website) had indicated that they
    would support the FPSE extensions for quite some time.



    However, that "quite some time has passed since they told me that, and I
    need to act now "while I can still buy myself time.". It has given me
    a lot of breathing space, in that I have been able to further develop additional
    numerous queries used in .asp pages created through the FP wizard, which (the
    database) will have to be migrated to whatever, anyway.



    6-Using FTP to upload the FP website gave me numerous problems, (for example, the
    FP text overlay files for graphics were not properly recognized by FTP,
    and the uploads got messed up. I guess I could sort through the list of items
    that are supported only by the FPSE and delete those items, but that will likely
    involve a lot of time and experimenting, all to hang on to what is/was an
    incredible program that my own business is starting to overgrow.<o:p></o:p>

    7- If, as a last resort, I
    can find a private, reasonable one-on-one tutor to guide me through whatever.
    It somehow doesn't make sense to hang on to FP at this point, due to the
    limitations I think I will have without the FPSE, especially since
    Access itself is holding me back (As much as I love the simplicity of
    working with FP and Access) As painful as it may be, I don't think I have a
    choice but to take the "leap".



    When I first started with FrontPage, Microsoft was then offering unlimited
    phone support, and I took advantage of that in a "big way". Almost
    all of the support people got to know me by name, and there were numerous times
    that I wound up giving some of the newer support reps advice on some of the FP functions,
    as I became so personally entrenched with it.




    Nothing would make me happier than to keep using FP, but it's getting to where
    I must (though painful as it may very well be) "close the lid" on it
    to protect my business.





    Thanks,<o:p></o:p>



    Ron
    Monday, January 22, 2018 2:54 PM
  • Clarke:

    I just replied to Scott's reply to me, and then I read your reply. I should have mentioned more strongly that it is not high-traffic I am concerned about with Access, but rather the limitations of Access only being able to create a maximum of 255 fields in a table, and the limitation of FP itself in not being able to display and update more than its own limited number of fields on an .asp page.

    On the 2nd FP site I mentioned, I have begun to create a series of apps, which are working great, and my contractors have been using them for the last 6 months not only on their pc's, but with their cell phones as well.

    Unfortunately, the number of fields required in these apps are going far beyond 255 per table and/or query. I could break up some of the apps into two or more sections, but that would become highly inefficient for the purpose I am using them for.

    I can't imagine the number of people in the industry that would chuckle sarcastically about that (using FP to create an app), but the limitation (mentioned above) in both Access and FP is holding me back. I checked online and I know that the 255 field limit in Access was at least present in Access 2007. I don't know if any of the later versions go beyond that, though.

    Question: If I find a way to successfully use an updated version of Access that may have  more capacity (or if even if I still have to wind up migrating to MYSQL Server Express) and creating the asp.net pages through VS, would I also be able to create standard publicly-accessed, non-database pages with graphics and text , or is each page created in VS a form tied to a database?

    I ask that because I want to know if I would have to go back to EW (or some other text editor...if that's what it is called...) and bring in the asp.net forms (or code for the forms) built in VS and embed them into pages created using EW?

    Or can VS be used as a total replacement vehicle for my 2nd, Front-page website, where I can also create a limited number of non-database-related web pages?

    Ron


    Monday, January 22, 2018 3:28 PM
  • Access was designed as and intended for use as a departmental database for use in large corporations, and as the principal database for small to mid-size companies.

    See Considerations for server-side Automation of Office; it says:

    All current versions of Microsoft Office were designed, tested, and configured to run as end-user products on a client workstation. They assume an interactive desktop and user profile. They do not provide the level of reentrancy or security that is necessary to meet the needs of server-side components that are designed to run unattended.

    Microsoft does not currently recommend, and does not support, Automation of Microsoft Office applications from any unattended, non-interactive client application or component (including ASP, ASP.NET, DCOM, and NT Services), because Office may exhibit unstable behavior and/or deadlock when Office is run in this environment.

    If you are building a solution that runs in a server-side context, you should try to use components that have been made safe for unattended execution. Or, you should try to find alternatives that allow at least part of the code to run client-side. If you use an Office application from a server-side solution, the application will lack many of the necessary capabilities to run successfully. Additionally, you will be taking risks with the stability of your overall solution.

    It very definitely explicitly includes Access in that. Do you have anything official from Microsoft saying that Access was designed or is recommended for use in a server?



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Monday, January 22, 2018 6:27 PM
  • First, stop editing online, if that's what you are doing now. Live editing requires the FPSE, so you are going to have to stop that and publish your current site down to your hard drive.

    I can edit online without FPSE using Expression Web 4. I don't recommend it for production sites but it is possible. I open the site and then I have the option to open it live.

    Second, to do this you are obviously going to have to start publishing your site via FTP.

    See the following. Web Deploy does more than FTP, especially for databases. Web Deploy appears to be the improved version of FPSE.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Monday, January 22, 2018 6:52 PM
  • I can edit online without FPSE using Expression Web 4.

    No, in fact, you cannot. Regardless of what EW calls it, EW's "live edit" is a faux live edit when compared to that available using the FPSE. Absent the FPSE, EW uses FTP, which means the file is downloaded to your PC, where you can then edit it and, when "saved," it is actually uploaded back up to the server. Here is the definitive word:

    There is no such thing as editing live using FTP, which is file TRANSFER protocol.

    EW lets you think you are but it actually downloads the file to the client to the EW temporary folder:
    %UserProfile%\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\Microsoft Expression Web 4, and publishes back
    when you save the file.

    You will occasionally get prompts about saving embeded files which can "usually" be ignored.


    Expression Web MVP
    Marked as answer by
     Paul Bartholomew,<abbr class="affil">Moderator</abbr>
     Thursday, July 08, 2010 7:59 PM
     

    FYI, Paul was at that time head of the Expression Web Project Group, so his word on anything EW was gospel, period. As he notes, FTP is a *FILE* transfer protocol. It provides no more granular transfers than at the file level. OTOH, when live editing with the FPSE, the extensions maintain an actual live connection to the remote file, so you are literally editing, keystroke by keystroke, the actual live, online file. These are not the same thing.

    As for your references to using Web Deploy, while undoubtedly accurate for VWD Express, Visual Studio, Web Matrix, et alia, which support Web Deploy, they are completely irrelevant in the context of that discussion. I was referring to publishing methods natively available from within FP. FP does support FTP transfers natively (if you have installed the Web Publishing Wizard). It does not support Web Deploy natively, nor WebDAV, another alternative to FTP that I also didn't mention, because that entire discussion was, if you will please note, in the context of continuing to use FP alone.

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Monday, January 22, 2018 11:39 PM
    Monday, January 22, 2018 11:22 PM
  • It very definitely explicitly includes Access in that. Do you have anything official from Microsoft saying that Access was designed or is recommended for use in a server?

    Oh, crap! No, Sam, I do not. What I do have is the sure and certain knowledge that for as much as a decade, or more, literally thousands of FrontPage sites (and others as wel!) successfully used Access as their backend database, and that many may still do so, as the current case in point amply demonstrates.

    Now, do you have any more bloody nits you want to pick about that post? If so, please bring them forward now. I was attempting, operating upon the impression that I took from the post of Ron's that I referenced in my post, to help him to possibly avoid the undoubted pain he is going to experience in migrating. Since his last reply to me, I now understand that Access can no longer serve his needs, and since no other database is natively supported by FP, that also rules out its continued use as a development application. Point taken, OK?

    I will note that as a sometime DBA in my former life, and an only partially zealous follower of Dr. Codd's relational principles (3NF is plenty rigorous enough for me), I would still absolutely shudder at the thought that any table (or query) in a database should require more than 255 columns! I cannot but believe that if an experienced DBA got his hands on that DB and started normalizing those tables and rationalizing the queries, far, far fewer columns would be necessary, but since I cannot see the database, that must remain just conjecture...

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Tuesday, January 23, 2018 12:42 AM
    Tuesday, January 23, 2018 12:11 AM
  • Scott: On the field limitation, I would love to privately show you a sample of the rudimentary app I've developed within my existing FP site, and see if you could help me determine a way to build the app using less fields on a single page (where it would be practical for accomplishing what it needs to do).

    FPSE aside, I will still need over 350 fields in a single page to update and view. (unless I broke up the page into 2 or 3 separately "chained" pages, where one completes, updates and then opens the next for the same record.

    I never found out how to do this in FP 2000 (especially since there are no support sources left anymore.

    I will also need to be able to hover over or click a field entry choice (radio button) and show a pop-up screen of what the underlying selection is , which may be one word or 2-3 paragraphs of text). Then I would have to figure out how to do this in my existing FP (sans FPSE?).

    I'm sure all of this functionality will be available to me in VS, and maybe if I can do the above with an Access database (probably a more current version, instead of Access 2000, I will be "tickled pink."

    In the meantime, as James Dean screamed out in Rebel Without a Cause..."You're Tearing Me Apaaaart!!! (just kidding)

    In any case, I thank you for your help and suggestions, and hope I have not overdone my welcome with this incredibly long thread.

    Ron
    Tuesday, January 23, 2018 1:04 AM
  • When compared to most every editor of anything, editing like that is live. Visual Studio, Word and Notepad don't save every keystroke; they save when we do a save operation. So by your definition they don't edit live either. But this is sure getting silly. I will let you be the winner here. If you insist then I will say that FTP is the absolute best and there cannot be anything better. You have confirmed that it is possible to open a web page, edit it and save it back, much the same as if the file is stored locally. I think that is what most people care about. Most people don't care whether that is called live or dead.

    I don't understand why you are so against Web Deploy and SQL Server but the subject of Web Deploy is very relevant to Visual Studio, Visual Basic and Front Page Extensions. 

    This discussion however is way, way off-topic.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Tuesday, January 23, 2018 2:19 AM
  • Ron, Visual Studio is a complete design tool, you can make any kind of page you want with it, not just database-connected pages. It's capabilities in that regard are nearly identical to those of Expression Web -- the primary reason to use Visual Studio is that it has the excellent ability to work with databases in addition to virtually all the features that Expression Web has.

    You should have no concern using Visual Studio for everything.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers


    • Edited by ClarkNK Tuesday, January 23, 2018 2:36 PM typo
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Wednesday, January 24, 2018 3:13 AM
    Tuesday, January 23, 2018 2:35 PM
  • Thanks again, Clarke. I have installed VS Community 2000 and opened a new project. I have 2 questions:

    1- Is Github the forum I use for VS Community?

    2- I want to import my Access database into VS. Do I do that from the project I opened, or do I import it into another area of VS? I jus t want to get that done before. Anxious to see it work with VS.

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 3:18 AM
  • Ron, I don't know anything about github.  I use the asp.net forums, there's a section there on Visual Studio and Visual Web Developer Express along with all kinds of sections for the controls and their uses

    If you have a project open you should see a Solution Explorer pane that shows any folders and files in your project (at least that what it is called in Visual Studio 13 for Web which is what I use.

    If there is an App_Data folder there just right-click on it an Add Existing Item, browse to your access database and add it.

    Depending on what kind of project you opened maybe the App_Data folder is there, otherwise right click and add a folder of that name and then add your Access database to that folder


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers


    • Edited by ClarkNK Wednesday, January 24, 2018 4:23 AM
    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 4:22 AM
  • Thanks again, Clarke. I have installed VS Community 2000 and opened a new project. I have 2 questions:

    1- Is Github the forum I use for VS Community?

    2- I want to import my Access database into VS. Do I do that from the project I opened, or do I import it into another area of VS? I jus t want to get that done before. Anxious to see it work with VS.

    Thanks,

    Ron

    GitHub is not a forum. I am surprised you are asking that; there is nothing in GitHub that looks like a forum. There are forums here in the MSDN forums for VS. The ASP.NET Forums is the appropriate place for ASP.NET questions.

    You don't import a database into VS. You write programs that connect to a database.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 4:47 AM
  • I don't understand why you are so against Web Deploy and SQL Server but the subject of Web Deploy is very relevant to Visual Studio, Visual Basic and Front Page Extensions. 

    Good lord,Sam! Did you not actually read my post at all?! I'm not "against" either Web Deploy or SQL Server. I am an MCP, and in my application development days have used both when their use was "relevant."

    However, NEITHER is relevant when the issue is the goal of solely working within FP, which ONLY supports FPSE and FTP publishing. And that was the thrust of my post. Since you apparently either didn't read it or ignored my first reply to you, here is what I said:

    As for your references to using Web Deploy, while undoubtedly accurate for VWD Express, Visual Studio, Web Matrix, et alia, which support Web Deploy, they are completely irrelevant in the context of that  discussion. I was referring to publishing methods natively available from within FP. FP does support FTP transfers natively (if you have installed the Web Publishing Wizard). It does not support Web Deploy natively, nor WebDAV, another alternative to FTP that I also didn't mention, because that entire discussion was, if you will please note, in the context of continuing to use FP alone.

    Capisci?

    This discussion however is way, way off-topic.
    Ya think?

    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Wednesday, January 24, 2018 6:24 AM
    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 6:21 AM
  • This discussion should have ended a long time ago. We can argue and argue and argue whether Web Deploy is relevant or not.

    Obviously you just have to be right. So fine, if saying you are right will end the discussion then I will say that.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 6:40 AM
  • In any case, I thank you for your help and suggestions, and hope I have not overdone my welcome with this incredibly long thread.
    Ron

    No, not a problem. It's not as if we're overworked here anymore. And after reading this post it is clear that you will need much more than FP can offer. I will note that since you have worked with EW for several years, one thing that you will miss in VS is the elegant, easy to use design surface of EW.

    However, you don't really need to give it up. As it happens, round-trip editing with EW and VS is easy. You can even have the same file/page open in both at the same time. VS will automatically notify you when you come back to it that the file was changed by another program, but EW won't.

    There was a discussion of this years back, when MS employees were still hanging around, and after SP2 was released, one of them posted this:

    There is a hidden/unsupported feature in EW4 SP2 called the file watcher. You can only enable it via registry by creating an EnableFileWatcher key with value=1(dword) under HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Expression\Web\4.0 path.

    Or copy & paste below text into a .reg file and double click on it.
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Expression\Web\4.0] "EnableFileWatcher"=dword:00000001

    In a later post another guy had written up reg files to both enable and disable this feature, and zipped them up and made them available on his site. He no longer does, but I've put my copy up on OneDrive, so you can get it here:

    Enable/Disable File Watcher for EW4 SP2 - https://1drv.ms/f/s!AoKUv9k_swrpn3sGhu7jEIIdvS_K

    Once you download that and unzip it, double-click the enabling reg file. After that, you will be warned when you switch to EW from VS after editing the page and saving it, so you can reload the file and avoid stepping on your changes by saving the current (obsolete) EW version over it, and vice versa. This way you can do all the database heavy lifting in VS, and all the design work in EW. Best of both worlds!  ;-)

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Wednesday, January 24, 2018 7:02 AM
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Wednesday, January 24, 2018 5:21 PM
    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 6:58 AM
  • Thank you Scott.

    I have decided to create a sample FP website with specific .asp pages built for the purpose (hopefully) of having participating members of this and other discussion groups view and hopefully help me with VS and EW by suggesting steps (as help is needed) within each platform (EW and VS) to create my alternative VS and/or EW-built website as needed.

    I will even include a sample portion of one of the "apps" I've built in FP for my contractors to use, to ask specific questions about things I would like to add once I move over to VS and/or back to EW.

    From your reply, it seems as though you are suggesting that I create the .asp.net forms in VS, but import them into (what may turn out to be) easier-to-build and better looking web pages built in EW, as opposed to trying to do the whole shibang in VS? 

    Am I correct about your suggestion?

    If so, I guess I will have to get a taste of how hard it is to do everything in VS. once I start building my first page (form).

    I tried to find a forum that is specific to VS Community, and found a forum called "Github", but as you can see, Sam doesn't seem to understand the logic of my rationally trying to locate a forum specific to VS Community (since that is the underlying program that I will be using).

    Even if I wasn't an "end-user" and were going to act as a total developer (although, I wouldn't hire me!) for someone else, I would still initially try to find the best program-specific support forum I could get my hands on if starting with a new program, such as VS.) 

    That said, If the asp.net forum is still considered to be the best forum for what I want to do in VS, I will go there instead.

    Does this sound like a reasonably good plan of attack?

    Ron

    Wednesday, January 24, 2018 5:59 PM
  • Ron, you don't have to "import" your Visual Studio work into Expression Web. You just open your project in Expression Web and save whatever work you do. You can use either program to open your work at any time, they are completely compatible.

    I know the pros in this forum find a little advantage in designing with Expression Web as opposed to Visual Studio, there are some things that are a bit niftier in Expression Web. But in the end, the pages don't look any "better" (or any different at all) for having been designed in EW versus VS.

    It's a matter of preference. Myself, since most of my pages interface with the database in one way or the other, I never bothered to switch to EW to create the ones that don't.

    Do whatever you find most convenient / easy for what you need to do.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 25, 2018 2:02 AM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 1:10 AM
  • Sounds like great advice from you again, and I thank you As stated, I will first try doing a few things in VS and then decide whether to stick to it totally, or use it along with EW.

    As mentioned to Scott, I am building a new sample website with my FP version for a domain I have not used yet... exclusively for the purpose of communicating better with some of the professionals in this and other forums. You are the only pro that seems to have had the most experience with FP, so you understand exactly most of my questions about the transition from FP.

    However, when communicating with some other pros on this and other forums, it seems to take a lot of effort to explain what I want to do due to my lack of familiarity with some terminology (and their lack of knowing FP the way you do) that doesn't always seem to address the simple questions I may have with regards to replacing what I've already done with FP, with a means to re-create the same/similar forms and apps (in a better, more efficient manner) using something else such as VS/asp.net.

    I am truly encouraged by being told that VS will work with my Access Database (or a later version that I might get).

    I think by posting questions with links to a specific section of a sample FP-created  form or app, it may be easier for pros at this or other forums to recognize quickly what the forms and or apps do, where they may be able to steer me in the right direction quickly and easily without all the confusion back and forth.

    Do you agree?

    One question: I started a new Project in VS. Do I copy/import my database into a section of VS or the project itself, as done in FP, then publish or upload the whole deal to the host server? Or should I be asking this in the asp.net forum? (Don't want to wear out my welcome (this thread seems to be getting gigantic..my bad)

    Ron
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 2:28 AM
  • While you can open your local site in EW if you want to edit pages with EW, this presumes you are using Asp.Net Web Forms, not MVC.  Be careful there: much of the newer discussions online about Asp.Net are dealing with MVC, which is quite different.  EW has no understanding of MVC views.  Web Forms is probably a better choice for you, anyway, since it will have an easier learning curve than MVC (but still quite a learning curve from FrontPage generated classic ASP).  Now, Visual Studio has CSS properties, Apply Styles, Manage Styles, and the New Style wizard just like EW, so you may not feel the need to use EW if you are working in VS.

    "found a forum called "Github""   ???  GitHub is a code repository, not dependent on Visual Studio. (Heck, you could use GitHub for your old FrontPage site, if you wanted to.)

    The asp.net forum, and the resources under the "Learning" tab of the asp.net site, is your best resource.  You'll have to use the search function to find the web forms material, however, since, as I said, MVC is now the front-and-center model. (E.g., start looking at https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/aspnet/web-forms/index ) That, and google.  If you preface your google query with MSDN , you'll get Microsoft's documentation related to your question.

    You have a learning curve ahead of you, of which Visual Studio is the least difficult part.  You should be focused on tutorials and walk-throughs (and books) on developing web forms applications, not trying to find a forum targeted toward the use of Visual Studio.  Most examples will assume you are using VS, anyway.  Definitely go through general tutorials and examples on your own before asking specific questions about your code. It would be slow and painful to just jump in without getting some background in asp.net first.  And forums aren't intended for actually coding your site for you, so you need to be able to make a start at solving whatever problem you have, and then show us your code (on the asp.net forum) and ask for help.


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    Thursday, January 25, 2018 5:23 AM
  • 

    Thank you Scott.

    I have decided to create a sample FP website with specific .asp pages built for the purpose (hopefully) of having participating members of this and other discussion groups view and hopefully help me with VS and EW by suggesting steps (as help is needed) within each platform (EW and VS) to create my alternative VS and/or EW-built website as needed.

    I will even include a sample portion of one of the "apps" I've built in FP for my contractors to use, to ask specific questions about things I would like to add once I move over to VS and/or back to EW.

    From your reply, it seems as though you are suggesting that I create the .asp.net forms in VS, but import them into (what may turn out to be) easier-to-build and better looking web pages built in EW, as opposed to trying to do the whole shibang in VS?

    Am I correct about your suggestion?

    Yes, mostly. The idea of having "live" example pages, with typical functionality enabled, is an excellent idea. Since you have been around here so long, I imagine that you have seen us request people to "post a link," so that we can see what they have and what they are wanting to accomplish. I should note that you will probably have to modify or add to these pages as you work through the process, but being able to point to existing functionality (no matter how it was created in FP) and say "How can I do this using VS and SQL Server?" will be very helpful.

    However, there is no need to "import" anything. As stated in my previous message, you can literally open the same page in VS and EW simultaneously, and work on them at the same time, as long as you are careful to save the page when leaving one app and to reload it in the other when notified that another application has modified the file. This happens automatically in VS, and will also happen in EW if you enable the File Watcher as described in my last post.

    I tried to find a forum that is specific to VS Community, and found a forum called "Github", but as you can see, Sam doesn't seem to understand the logic of my rationally trying to locate a forum specific to VS Community (since that is the underlying program that I will be using).

    Even if I wasn't an "end-user" and were going to act as a total developer (although, I wouldn't hire me!) for someone else, I would still initially try to find the best program-specific support forum I could get my hands on if starting with a new program, such as VS.) 

    That said, If the asp.net forum is still considered to be the best forum for what I want to do in VS, I will go there instead.

    Well, actually, after going back and reading that remark, it would seem that he preferred to show how much more he knows than you and say that he was "surprised that you asked that," rather than actually taking the time to explain what GitHub is. He was right in that GitHub is not a forum. It is an open source collaborative development environment, a code repository, built upon the open source version control system Git. Here is a quick video intro to what GitHub is, and how it works for you. Also note the other helpful videos down the right side of that page.

    As it turns out, there are forums for both Git, the version control system, and GitHub, the collaborative development environment. The one for Git is here https://gitforums.org/, and for GitHub is here https://github.community/. A good introduction to Git, with tutorials, can be found here.

    Now, here's a little reality check. Although it is possible, quite easy, in fact, to work with your Access DB using VS, you should do that in a completely separate solution that you use to build your sample pages, because Access SQL is not the same as T-SQL (Transact SQL, the version used for Sybase and MSSQL DBs). I would be surprised  if anything that you create with VS based upon your underlying Access database would work with your eventual MSSQL Server database. The queries in the different SQL dialects are incompatible (see this).

    So, job one is going to be to get your current Access DB reimplemented as a MSSQL DB. I haven't done this, so I don't know if it works when targeting a SQL Server Express DB (which if I'm not mistaken is a file-based DB), but I found this solution at Experts Exchange. See if that will work for you.

    Now, while you're always welcome here, you're also going to need forums for the new systems you'll be learning and using. You can go to https://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/vstudio/en-US/home?category=visualstudio for the main Visual Studio forum, and note the subforums listed down the left side. Once you start working with T-SQL, you can go to https://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/sqlserver/en-us/home?forum=transactsql for help with that. And, of course, for the ASP.NET programming nitty gritty, you already know about forums.asp.net.

    So, there you go. Get that DB converted to SQL Server Express format, then create a solution (VS-speak for a project) that points to that DB. I see no point in working up a solution that uses the Access DB in VS (unless you just want to "practice" working with VS). Just use your current FP/Access lashup to create your example pages, then ask how to recreate them in VS using SQL Server Express.

    [EDIT] While researching and composing this omnibus reply I missed Kathy's post, with which I heartily concur. You're definitely going to need to understand both Web Forms and the ASP.NET that you will be programming them in. Gaining a general understanding of both is the basis of any ability to use them for data-driven Web application development.[/EDIT]

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Thursday, January 25, 2018 8:00 AM
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 25, 2018 12:12 PM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 7:06 AM
  • Scott:
    Thanks. Actually, I have obviously made a mistake with regards to Github. (It showed up on a search for VS Forums, and I thank you for the links to which I just clicked on while writing this, and I found that I was already signed in (I probably signed up for that forum a while back and never followed up (unless my Microsoft account info automatically gives me access(?).

    Through the last few replies on this forum and the asp.net forum, I have been told that access databases are "welcome" and not a problem for working within VS/asp.net, which I had earlier thought it would be.

    If Access is okay for creating forms using VS/asp.net, then I will likely go to a later version of it (I am still using Access 2000 within my FP site, but I have dozens of large queries and tables that, if can be used, will be a relief and may address a lot of the learning curve down time migrating and learning SQL. Do you concur that VS will be okay for use with VS/asp.net?
    Ron

    Thursday, January 25, 2018 12:12 PM
  • Kathy:

    Thanks for the info.

    You use the term "Web Forms". Is this the name of a part of VS, or a separate program for creating web forms?

    By the way, I mistakenly mentioned Github, as it turned up in a search for forums specific to VS Community. My bad.

    Ron

    Thursday, January 25, 2018 1:20 PM
  • Web forms is one flavor of Asp.Net.  MVC is another.  (There are even a couple more.)  You need to know which flavor (or even combinations of flavors - but don't add more complexity than you need, so ignore that option for now) when you set up your project in VS.  Start reading from the link I gave you.  As  I said, you have a large learning curve ahead of you.

    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications


    • Edited by KathyW2 Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:23 PM
    • Marked as answer by Aston W Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:34 PM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:20 PM
  • Thanks, will do. Ron
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 4:34 PM
  • Access is not recommended, by Microsoft, for websites - it has limitations that a real database server does not. On the other hand, people do insist on using it because it is easy for a beginner to work with on their PC. If you find a version of Access that is (1) supported by your hosting company and (2) allows what you need (although, I, too, assume your database design is far from optimal if you have over 250 fields in one table) and the performance hit is not a problem for you, you can certainly continue to use it.

    I will point out that Access 2016 has a limit of 255 fields in a table: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/access-2016-specifications-0cf3c66f-9cf2-4e32-9568-98c1025bb47c   So, if you are running up against that limit, and don't want to change (improve) your database design, a new version of Access won't be your answer.  SQL Server databases have a much higher field (column) limit per table (Columns per nonwide table  1,024; Columns per wide table  30,000).


    Kathleen Wilber<br/> <a href="https://brightwillow.com">BrightWillow</a> - Asp.Net Applications


    • Edited by KathyW2 Thursday, January 25, 2018 6:46 PM
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 6:43 PM
  • OK, Ron, what's up with the Access talk now? I said to you...

    It can easily handle up to more than a hundred simultaneous users with full CRUD access (Create, Read, Update, Delete), and can even more easily serve hundreds of users who are hitting it for display-only purposes. You do not need to move from Access, even if you decide to change publishing methods or hosting providers.

    After which you said...

    FPSE aside, I will still need over 350 fields in a single page to update and view.

    To which I responded...

    And after reading this post it is clear that you will need much more than FP can offer.

    And I later advised...

    So, there you go. Get that DB converted to SQL Server Express format, then create a solution (VS-speak for a project) that points to that DB. I see no point in working up a solution that uses the Access DB in VS (unless you just want to "practice" working with VS). Just use your current FP/Access lashup to create your example pages, then ask how to recreate them in VS using SQL Server Express.

    And now you are saying...

    Through the last few replies on this forum and the asp.net forum, I have been told that access databases are "welcome" and not a problem for working within VS/asp.net, which I had earlier thought it would be.

    If Access is okay for creating forms using VS/asp.net, then I will likely go to a later version of it

    Which brings to mind a quotation you referred to recently...

    "You're Tearing Me Apaaaart!!! (just kidding)

    So, what's it going to be? Access, or SQL Server Express? Do you really need more than Access's 255 field limit, or not? If not, then fine, Access it is, and we can work on ways to ease the transition from your Access DB to SQL Server Express. Or, if you really do need in excess of 255 fields (columns), then we can try to help you find tools and/or tutorials that will enable you to easily translate between Access's file-based database format and SQL Server Express's file-based database format.

    But in either event, it would be kind of nice if you would please make up your mind about what database technology you will need.

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Friday, January 26, 2018 12:35 PM
    Friday, January 26, 2018 6:12 AM
  • And I certainly appreciate that you are all still wanting to help me with this.

    I sometimes feel apologetic that I am an end-user, but I am an end-user who has developed a pretty complex website in FP (in terms of the back-end database-related queries and pages related to my business) , despite the negative and critical comments I have had to endure about using such old technology, etc.

    From an end-user's standpoint...if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    And it ain't broke as long as the FP website is able to be hosted for now. However, now my own needs (as an end-user) have increased and I need to do further website "development" .

    That said, if someone (who does not have high expectations) came to me and asked me to create a basic website, and I decided to use Expressionweb to build it (which I now know how to do), I guess I would be better defined as a "developer," though with limited talents.

    My point is, that I would be asking questions about how to do things in the same way as I have been as an end-user, but would still have a hard time being confronted with (at times) a lot of terminology thrown at me by some of the professionals on a particular forum that is simply too hard to interpret or contend with, and that may be (at times) "overkill" for the question asked, which makes it easy to become overwhelmed (again....at times).

    However, I hope to improve my personal ability to ask questions in a better way than I have been for these forums.

    And while its sometimes almost fun to sit back and watch some of you "battling it out" with each other over a complex, detailed technical issue that is over my head (I almost made some popcorn to eat while I watched you guys the other day....just kidding!)

    Scott...Your original suggestion about using Access to "practice" using VS is going to be the best solution for me to at least get used to using VS.

    However, since your last post I have tried to address some related issues.

    1- Apparently, VS Community/asp.net will not work very well with a 32-bit database (which I think my Access 2000 is) so I now have to first obtain a later version of Access (64-bit) and merge/import/copy (whatever the term is ) my existing databases... tables and queries... into it.

    2- I did not totally describe my issue with Access properly. It is the size of a very large, growing query made up of several tables that it becoming the problem, and I thought that maybe it was FrontPage itself that couldn't handle its growing size.

    However, I have a feeling that even a later version of 64-bit Access will also have a limit on how many fields it can handle in a single query, not just a single table.

    When I recently added a few fields to this larger query in my Access 2000 version(which is going beyond 250 fields in total) I got a pop-up message that it (the query) had reached its  field limit.

    There is also a limit to how many fields can be updated at once using the FP .asp Wizard (which I am not sure you are familiar with).

    I will assume that later versions of Access will have a similar limitation (not just on fields per table, but on fields per query as well.\, which means that yes, at some point I will need to switch over to an SQL Server Express database. But not just yet)

    3-Since your last reply last time, Kathy had also responded to this issue:

    <<Access is not recommended, by Microsoft, for websites - it has limitations
    that a real database server does not. On the other hand, people do insist on
    using it because they are easy for a beginner to work with on their PC. If you
    find a version of Access that is (1) supported by your hosting company and (2)
    allows what you need (although, I, too, assume your database design is far from
    optimal if you have over 250 fields in one table) and the performance hit is not
    a problem for you, you can certainly continue to use it.

    I will point out that Access 2016 has a limit of 255 fields in a table:

    https://support.office.com/en-us/article/access-2016-specifications-0cf3c66f-9cf2-4e32-9568-98c1025bb47c  
    So, if you are running up against that limit, and don't want to change (improve)
    your database design, a new version of Access won't be your answer.  SQL Server
    databases have a much higher field (column) limit per table (Columns per nonwide
    table  1,024; Columns per wide table  30,000). >>
    --------
    I was initially uncomfortable with what she mentioned about Microsoft not recommending that Access be used in a website, but then I realized that, even at the rudimentary level I have been at with all of this since starting with Frontpage, and since my existing Frontpage website has worked so well for all these years (with regards to the administrative, back-end database-related tasks) and has efficiently managed the back-end of my business so well all this time, I should not have been concerned about Microsoft's comment (for now).

    So here's what I am going to do, and please let me know if this still makes sense to you, as I have (I think) come up with the best solution for now.

    1-As per what I learned on the asp.net forum, I am going to obtain a 64-bit version of Access and import/copy all of my Access 2000 databases into it.

    2- As previously mentioned, I am going to publish a new, sample FP website which will contain sample forms (created with FP 2000 and my existing Access 2000 database) specifically for the purpose of more efficiently asking forum questions and discussions, which should make it easier for all parties (I am sorry to all of us that I did not think about doing this earlier.).

    3-As it stands right now, I have set up VS Community on my computer and am waiting to obtain and set up the 64-bit version of Access, so that it will work properly with VS/Asp.net.

    4- I will hopefully be able to start initially "practicing" on a new VS project with the 64-bit version of the Access Database, with the understanding that ultimately, I will still have to change over to an SQL database to address the issues above, rather than getting my head all clogged up with trying to learn how to work with Both VS/Asp.net and SQL Server Express simultaneously.

    After all, my FrontPage website is still working properly, which buys me some time to (hopefully quickly) learn enough about VS/Asp.net to replace it (the FrontPage website altogether.

    5-When I started using Expressionweb several years ago, I used the following Timothy Training Tutorial https://www.youtube.com/user/createthenet/featured?disable_polymer=1  which gave me enough basic training (css, etc.) to switch my then-existing FrontPage main website over to Expressionweb 4. (with additional help received from the Expressionweb forum).

    As mentioned previously, at that time I set up a 2nd Frontpage website to continue with all database-related issues of the business, which did not have to be incorporated into one total website (I will likely keep things that way, regardless).

    Because I no longer needed to have the database functionality incorporated into the same website, I did manage to build a functional website with Expressionweb, which I used for a couple of years without attempting to incorporate or extend my learning to using VS/asp.net or any database functionality within Expressionweb (as my other Frontpage Website was and has been still functioning so well), but I later recreated the main Expressionweb-built website on a CMS (Wordpress) site (Is that a "dirty word" for this forum?)

    However, as the database-related functionality of my business will remain separated from my main website, I will hopefully be able to replace my other, existing Frontpage-built website with a VS or combined VS/Expressionweb-built website to deal separately with the database-related functions of my business.

    I need to find something similar to the Timothy Training (online tutorial for Expressionweb as mentioned above) to get me started with VS Community so that I can start an opening, "beginner project" with the 64-bit Access Database, to hopefully create at least what I have developed on my FP Site, (accepting Access's table and/or query limitations for now)

    As of right now, I have VS installed, have started a new project...pending my obtaining the 64-bit Access, and now feel like like I am sitting in an empty room. "All dressed up and nowhere to go."

    Note: I noticed on the VS forum that some people were having trouble viewing tools, etc. with their newly-installed VS Community. I don't know if that may be a problem with new bugs, etc, or not, but I am considering installing VS 2015 since VS Community may still need to cycle though new bugs. Hard to assess that, since I have no experience with either.

    6- Once I have accomplished the above, I will then face the big, bad learning curve of MySQL Server Express and then be able to finally close down and totally replace my FP Website and finally move away from Windows XP entirely, which is another issue holding me back, as I have to use Virtual XP with an older, Windows 7 Pro computer, etc....but that's another issue for a different forum.

    7- I think it will be best to very soon close this extremely large thread and, when I have published the sample FP website I mentioned and have gotten hold of a 64-bit version of Access, I will start a new thread in this forum, (as I don't know at this point whether or not I will later use ExpressionWeb itself or do everything in VS as recommended by a few of you. I will also likely need to ask a few questions on this forum as well as the asp.net forum as I proceed)

    Please let me know if the above "plan" makes sense to you for now. I would also ask this of anyone else reading this reply to Scott...to get a good consensus (or be told....by consensus... to get lost!)

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Friday, January 26, 2018 3:24 PM
  • Ron, some time back I was using Access 2000 for a volunteer website, and there was a simple setting at my host to allow the 32 bit version to run.

    Worth a quick question to your host.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Friday, January 26, 2018 10:39 PM
    Friday, January 26, 2018 9:55 PM
  • Hey, Clarke. Thanks for the tip.

    Actually, I purchased a professional subscription of Office 365, where one of my website's mail accounts will now flow through my 365 account (I have been paying for this for over 6 months and still have to finalize the changeover so that I can download Office 2016, which thankfully includes a 64-bit version of Access 2016, which translates into almost a "freebee" for me, as I did not know that Access was included in this professional version f Office 2016 (as Access and Frontpage were included in Office 2000 Premium...oh, man....are we really that old??

    I will have to set up a test site with another domain for the VS/Asp.net site. As mentioned in my last post to Scott, I am very soon (over the next few days) going to host another one of my domains and will be publishing another FrontPage site, copying parts of my main FP site for samples of .asp pages, etc. This FP site will be used specifically for the purpose of being able to discuss things with professionals in forums while giving links to sample pages and forms, which I expect will make conversations a lot easier. (Eg. "Here's a link to a sample of one of the apps I did with FrontPage. Can you steer me in the right direction as to how I can recreate this or that feature it using VS and asp.net"?) Or something like that, with more specificity. As mentioned to Scott, I wish I had thought about doing that a while ago.

    I will start out using the 64-bit version of Access, knowing full well that I will have to take the leap to MSQL server express, as my growing need to create and review queries that can handle over 350-500-fields will go beyond Access' capabilities.

    However, I have deduced that it will be wiser to get my hands and feet wet wit VS/asp.net first and then make the database switchover. Luckily, my existing FP website is operating well and hosting should not be an issue as I learn the oter..

    If fact, they(the hosting company) has informed me that they are becoming aggressive about protecting their ability continue to host FP sites (apparently with an upcoming, newer Plesk server. So it looks that I will have an ample safety margin for making my own transition from FP to VS/asp.net and as importantly...getting away from Windows XP, which I have to use as Virtual XP on my Windows 7 Pro computer to run FrontPage. I'm actually looking forward to having a lot more flexibility (I hope) by going to the other system.

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Friday, January 26, 2018 10:39 PM
  • Well, I will address the last item first. I do not believe that you should start a new thread in this forum, unless it is clearly on-topic for the Expression Web forum, and it is not clearly a continuation of this discussion.

    If you ask such a question, in a new thread without all of the "backstory" contained here, newcomers to the thread will probably be making suggestions which have already been made and discussed here, and either rejected or accepted, with or without reservations and caveats. Granted that this thread has drifted, but there are still enough questions about using EW with Access, and using EW with VS, that we are still at least nominally on topic.

    If you do decide to start a new thread, be sure that it meets topicality requirements for this forum. Otherwise, simply continue here. We who have participated already know where we are in the discussion, while newcomers will be able to orient themselves by reading the precious discussion.

    Now, as you begin moving to a more modern, capable version of Access, you will want to post questions in a forum which is more germane to that subject, like the Access for Developers forum. They will be able to help you with questions about that process, and with any ongoing development with using Access for VS development (along with forums.asp.net, of course, particularly the Web Forms subsection).

    I would suggest that you start as soon as possible to convert your Access DB to SQL Server Express, not necessarily to begin production development, but to see if there are any issues involved in the conversion early enough that you find and resolve them before crunch time comes when moving to VS-and-SQL Server Express development. You might want to create a separate VM for the purpose (Win 7 Pro is available on eBay for $20 - $25 as an OS for the VM) as a sandbox while you're learning.

    To do the conversion, see Express Essentials: Migrating from Access 2007 to SQL Server Express, I have tested this procedure using the Upsizing Wizard available in Access 2007 and higher, up to the point of selecting the SQL Server Express DB to migrate to, which I don't have installed on my system. You will want to have at least one instance of SQL Server Express installed on your VM (if using) so that you can complete the migration process.

    Note that it offers to migrate "Indexes, Defaults, Validation rules and Table relationships, and DRI," but no mention is made of queries, and given the differences between Jet SQL and Transact-SQL, I would be surprised if your current complex, multi-field (255+ fields!) queries could be directly, and successfully, translated during the migration process. This is something that you will definitely want to know about early in the process, so that you can deal with it before it becomes necessary in the eventual VS-and-SQL Server Express production site implementation.

    Once you start working with SQL Server Express, and trying to address those query issues, you will want to start posting to the dedicated SQL Server Express forum. I noticed that as of this writing, the first non-sticky thread there is about the SQL Server Management Studio, which is where you will be doing your query building. I found an article about a SQL Server Express 2012 version download which would contain pretty much everything you might need for SQL Server Express development  (expand "Details" and note the "Express with Advanced Services" option).

    When you click the "Download" button you will be taken to a page where you select the option package you want to download. Get ENU\x64\SQLEXPRADV_x64_ENU.exe, which is the "Express with Advanced Services" package. Besides the other features, the key to this option is the SQL Server Management Studio Express, with which you will be using its Query Builder to rebuild your queries in T-SQL dialect. Here is an older article about the differences between SQL Server 2008 Management Studio and SQL Server Management Studio Express. It may be presumed that similar differences exist between later versions.

    It may be that later version downloads (SQL Server Express 2014, 2015, or 2016) also have those options; you will want to check before committing to one of them. Note that it is NOT necessary to install the very latest version of SQL Server Express, especially if you can't easily get everything you need in a later version. In fact, you should check with your host as to which versions of SQL Server Express he supports (not all do support SQL Server Express). If he does not, either find a host who does, or plan to eventually migrate up to a fully-fledged MSSQL DB on your host (may involve $$$), at which point (after the migration from SQL Server Express to MSSQL Server) the local DB becomes moribund and you must effect any structural modifications to the online MSSQL Server database.My own personal preference if I were in your shoes would be to find a host that offers SQL Server Express. There's enough paradigm shift already without having to also learn MSSQL Server administration on top of everything else. Just sayin'...

    So, there you are. I think that you now have all of the links that you will need to the necessary and germane forums, and to all of the assets that you will need begin practicing working with VS-and-SQL Server Express, and using SQL Server Management Studio Express, particularly the Query Builder. As I said, I believe that you should start that process ASAP, to find any problems before things become critical. Granted, you will be busy with bringing the Access side of things up to date, both 64-bitwise and version-wise, but once that is done and stable, you should immediately look to beginning the SQL Server Express migration as well, from your final version of Access to whichever version of SQL Server Express you decide upon. Happy learning!  ;-)

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Sunday, January 28, 2018 12:36 AM
    • Edited by paladyn Sunday, January 28, 2018 12:38 AM
    Sunday, January 28, 2018 12:12 AM
  • Scott:

    1- On the starting of a new thread, I was under the impression that this thread was getting too large for the forum, not for me. So I will continue on this thread for related questions or follow-up posts, as it will definitely be good that all participants in this thread have the background.

    2- I am already using Windows 7 Pro and have downloaded both VS and MSQL Server Express, but have only installed VS so far, as I want to start out clean with the best version of Access.

    In regards to  my access 2000 issue, where I stated that I need to be able to accommodate a large query containing more than 255 fields (I think the query field limit is the same as the table field limit in Access 2000), I have resigned myself to resolving this by breaking up my large, "growing" query (sounds like a monster movie!) into 2-3 separate queries, where the user will have to use separate forms to update and review field entries (one section at a time). I had hoped to display all 350 + fields from a single query within one .asp form, but I can live without that and make the above work for now.

    I never did find out in FrontPage how to chain multiple update pages for one record, where the submission of one page updates the first query, and then you advance to the next update page for that record without having to re-enter the record's code in the form at the top of each page.

    I just went to a link for what I though was a Classic .asp Forum to ask how to do this, but the heading at the top is for IIS, so I'm not sure if that is the right forum. I guess they'll let me know.

    In the meantime, I have confirmed that my Office 365 Professional subscription (which I have not yet activated) contains Access 2016 (64-bit) and I will be transferring/copying/importing (?) my existing Access 2000 databases into it, to initially use for VS.

    However, I will likely take your suggestion and try a test migration into MSQL Server Express. 

    However, if I am able to resolve the issue mentioned above (field limits in my too-large query) by breaking up the large query into 2-3 queries within my Access 2000 database and related .asp pages in my current FP website, and if I can (at the very least) reproduce the current database and form functionality with asp.net through VS (using an Access 2016 database) and finally wean myself away from both FP and Windows XP, then I think it will be better to worry about the jump to MySQL server express a little later.

    If I can get to that point as quickly as possible, and it works for now, I will be happy as a clam for the time being.
    And although I am only "one "half" of an under-qualified developer, I still have a business to run as an "end-user", so I have to pace myself with this accordingly and make sure my learning curve for all of this doesn't throw me a "financial curve" by overwhelming myself with too much "stuff" at one time.

    Thanks,

    Ron



    • Edited by Aston W Sunday, January 28, 2018 1:23 AM
    Sunday, January 28, 2018 1:20 AM
  • "I never did find out in FrontPage how to chain multiple update pages for one record, where the submission of one page updates the first query, and then you advance to the next update page for that record without having to re-enter the record's code in the form at the top of each page. "

    Now, it doesn't help that we have no idea what your pages look like and why people have to enter over 250 items.  (I can't imagine anyone entering 250 items in a web form before the connection times out or they give up.)   But if you mean, above, that you need to track what record they are entering data for when they click a "Next" button to go to the next page, simply pass that information to the next page.  There are several ways in asp.net, but the simplest (which also works in Classic ASP or simple html pages) is with a query parameter attached to the link that you redirect to on the next button.


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 3:58 AM
  • Kathy: I have already asked in the asp.net forum if they could recommend a way to "chain" forms together (in classic .asp), where I will break up the large query into a few queries and create update pages with less fields submitted per page, but where the submission of the first form (where the 2nd form is an update form for the 2nd query for the same record) carries to the 2nd form and opens it for the same record without the user having to type in the client's code at the top of each page.

    This is how I asked:

    "Is there a way that I can have the submission of the first .asp form (or a create a link within the .asp form with a hyperlink parameter) update the fields and then it automatically opens the next .asp form in the chain for the same record (instead of having to keep entering the code at the top for each .asp form for the same record?)

    Can I set up a hyperlink with parameters(s) that accomplishes that? I have already created links in a few .asp "database result pages" pages, where a hyperlink within the .asp page will take the user to the appropriate page, but the parameter settings of these hyperlinks I that are on these pages only take the user to a specific .htm page.

    For example, the following is a hyperlink parameter on an .asp page where "HypeName " is the field that takes the user (in this case) to an .htm page with the same name as the HypeName field:

    http://www.MyWebsite.com/Folder/Page Name/ <%=FP_FieldLink(fp_rs,"HypeName")%>.htm


    Can a similar hyperlink parameter take the user to an .asp page, where the criteria for opening that .asp page is the field that contains the client's code within the same query contained in the first .asp "results page (where "HypeName" also resides.)?

    I think it will be easier to ask this question once I post the sample pages.

    Thanks,

    Ron



    • Edited by Aston W Wednesday, January 31, 2018 5:15 AM
    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 5:14 AM
  • I've already said you can pass information in the query parameter. Read that in the asp.net code behind page, and use that information for your database queries and updates.  Similarly you can redirect to a specific page in code behind.  As to changing links on the page itself, there are ways to do that, but details would depend on where you get the value for that page - and again, it would typically be done in the code behind page, although there are some in-page code syntax methods in asp.net, too.

    You need to pause your questions and learn asp.net.  Go through some tutorials.  A lot of tutorials, actually.  In addition to the link I gave earlier, there are other sites with tutorials.  Some are paid, although with free trials to see if it is worth it to you  (e.g. https://www.pluralsight.com/courses/aspdotnet-webforms4-intro  with a 10 day free trial, and $29/mo afterwards) and some are free (e.g. http://asp.net-tutorials.com/ ). As I said, you have a large learning curve: most of the answers you will get will mean nothing to you until you know the context, and many you won't need to ask once you've done some learning.   (By the way, C# is more popular than VB.net, if you don't already know VB.  Many examples on MSDN are in both, but many forum post answers default to C#.  If you already know VB, go ahead and use VB.net.)


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications


    • Edited by KathyW2 Wednesday, January 31, 2018 7:16 AM
    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 6:19 AM
  • Kathy:

    I didn't make it clear to you in my reply:

    I had asked the above question in the asp.net forum as a question specifically mentioning classic .asp, not asp.net, as I had been sent there for this question by another Microsoft forum.

    As I will still continue to work with my active, hosted non-public "legacy" FrontPage Website until I learn what is necessary in asp.net and VS to move everything over, I feel as though I have to apologize for also being an "end-user," but I must maintain a logical way to preserve my ongoing business while going through the learning curve.

    Trust me...I can't wait to finally move away from having to accommodate my FP website by having to use a separate Windows 7 Pro computer so that I can use its Virtual XP, etc. Unfortunately, I am told that Windows 10 Pro's Hyper-V doesn't accommodate a virtual XP solution.

    And once again, I do appreciate the help and advice you and your colleagues have given me over the last few years with regards to Expressionweb, etc.

    I am lucky in that, the hosting company I am with for my FrontPage website has recently assured me that they will be hanging on (for a long time) offering the FP Sever Extensions. However, I know what I need to do by moving over as quickly as possible (and now).

    I also feel that, by continuing to further develop my own series of "apps" within my FrontPage website, I will be better able to post very targeted samples for the asp.net forum (and perhaps the Expressionweb Forum, if I decide to use it along with VS as suggested).

    As there is no active forum currently available for my very active FP website, I have often tried to ask questions on this forum related to FP as I made the move over to Expressionweb a few years ago. It seemed the logical place to go to get advice on both platforms, as ExpressionWeb was supposed to be Microsoft's "replacement" for Front Page.

    And because the non-public, back-end database-related operations of my business is still being managed successfully through my current FrontPage web, I have to be very careful not to screw myself up with the "transition" process.

    In the meantime, I will check out the tutorials you have recommended. As I had mentioned the online tutorial (Timothy Training for Expressionweb)  that got me up and running with Expressionweb, I look forward to using a similarly staged set of tutorials for learning VS/Asp.net.

    Ron

    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 1:53 PM
  • As Kathy said, you can pass data from the textbox of a first form to the textbox of a second form.  You can also put a condition on what gets loaded when the next page loads based on the value being passed.  You have pretty much unlimited flexibility with your VB code.

    Without knowing what you are trying to accomplish, it's hard to comment. But with your description of modifying queries as you go along I can't help but wonder if your database is set up in the best way for your job.  For example, it is possible to have a query bring up database results using the results of a previous query as the source. Maybe you already know that, maybe it doesn't apply -- hard to say.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    • Marked as answer by Aston W Wednesday, January 31, 2018 2:41 PM
    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 2:37 PM
  • Clarke:

    I am waiting for my hosting company give me the setup information to publish my sample FP website, so that I can better explain what I will want to do when asking questions in the asp.net forum and other forums such as this.

    However, I was going to ask you this question directly, as I think that you are the most experienced individual that I know of who knows FP inside and out and, while this forum is not designed to deal with issues directly for FP, if you can help me resolve this particular issue with my existing, actively hosted FP website, then I will be able to incorporate it into my sample FP website for the asp.net forums and other forums.

    Here goes:

    On my FP website, I have created a series of .asp pages, where I have created (using the .asp wizard) a hyperlink on one of the .asp result pages that displays query results for the record, where a hyperlink parameter sends the user to a specific .htm page.

    http://www.mywebsite.com/FolderName/<%=FP_FieldLink(fp_rs,"HypeName")%>.htm

    "Hypename" is a field contained within the same query and the resulting .htm page contains the same underlying field value (hypename).

    What I need is guidance(if you can give it to me) as to how to create a similar hyperlink parameter with the .asp wizard or manually within FP 2000, where the hyperlink parameter carries the user over to another or next  .asp page in the series and automatically opens it for the same record, instead of the user having to re-enter the client's code at the top of the page for each "leg" of the series of .asp update and/or .asp result pages.

    The client's access code is a field called QuoteCode, which is included in the same query and a value has been previously entered within that field for the record.

    This is a question I never asked throughout all these years, (especially when I was able to get free 24/7 Frontpage support from Microsoft directly-those were the days) as I did not a have a real need for this function...which I do now and will when I move over to asp.net

    If you need to see the sample FP website, which should make it easier for me to ask it in the asp.net forum for a future, similar asp.net function)...I will have to wait until the sample site is completely set up.

    Note: As this is a somewhat public forum, in my sample "forum-specific" sample website I will have to re-shuffle a lot of things and create different sample .asp pages and .htm pages etc. which will take some time to do.

    In the meantime, if you are able to help me with this single issue without needing to view the sample, I would be eternally grateful.

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Wednesday, January 31, 2018 3:57 PM
  • Well I like the eternally grateful idea, but ---

    I did know my way around the FP wizards and bots back in the day, but it has been a long time, and the only way I even might be able to help you with something like that is to play around with it. And the sad truth is, I don't even have Frontpage any longer.

    Even worse, some years ago I tossed out my main reference book titled "Frontpage Bible" or something like that because I told myself I'm never going back, having discovered and re-done my websites using VWD Express. Which is, but the way, the approach I decided to take back then -- redid my website from scratch using asp.net.

    So I'm don't think I'm your guy.  But Kathy or Scott may well be able to assist you, they both do web design for a living whereas I, kind of like you, only have done what I myself needed for my own website. Scott I think has worked in information systems forever and has extensive experience with coding and all, I don't know if Kathy did that in her first life, but at least in her "retirement" she has become very well versed in the art.


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 1:06 AM
  • Unfortunately, while I have modified Classic ASP for a couple of customers, it relies on my ability to see the existing code, including the defined functions.  (It is definitely not trivial to do, given the "spaghetti code" nature of Classic ASP and the need to learn what the original coder did, and I charge accordingly.) I never used FrontPage database functions, or used FP's ASP functions.


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 10:12 AM
  • Yeah, like Clark and Kathy, I haven't worked with ASP in years. On the one hand, it's just vbscript (although technically it can be done in javascript), a straightforward scripting language. However, you have a very specific need, and after reading your post several times, I'm still not positive that I understand precisely what it is you want to do.

    It seems that you want to pass a set of values, derived from a query, from one page to the other. In the receiving page, you want to fetch the passed values, and automatically use those values to... do what? Run another multi-field query? If that is literally all you need to do, then take a look at this page, BTW, that reminded me that 4guysfromrolla.com was always great for finding this kind of "recipe" information for ASP. I do kinda shudder when I see that antiquated HTML markup, though.  ;-)

    Anyway, that page shows you how to both send and receive one or many key=value pairs using GET, POST, querystring, and session variable methods. Also note in the third example (following "POST") that you can get the values to pass directly from recordset fields, which may address one of your issues.

    Is that what you are looking for? If not, you're going to have to be clearer in explaining what you need to do. Specifically, first describe how many key=value pairs you need to pass, and where they are (textboxes? gridviews? what?) after you have run query-pass-1. Then describe what you want to do with these values when you get them in the target page, exactly. Try to make it easier to try to help you. Right now, it is not.

    BTW, the irony occurs to me—despite all of the intervening discussion, we are right back where I suggested you go when I first entered this thread: that you continue simply using FP to maintain your site. I frankly believe that your data architecture is seriously flawed if you require that many fields, and that if you refactored and normalized your database tables you would be able to work well within FP's field limits. But, Fourth Normal Form (for many cases, 3NF is sufficient) is another discussion, and is well and truly out of bounds for this forum...

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Saturday, February 3, 2018 7:02 AM
    Saturday, February 3, 2018 6:27 AM
  • Scott:

    As per your comment:  "I frankly believe that your data architecture is seriously flawed if you require that many fields"

    As mentioned in a previous reply in this thread, I have already decided to break up the oversized query and tables into a smaller set of queries, so the size of my queries and/or tables are no longer an issue.

    The real, single issue (at the moment) is being able to create a link that contains some sort of hyperlink parameter within one .asp page (which I will need to learn how to do in asp.net as well),  that "draws" from a specific field value in one query (to open a specific record) where a hyperlink on the first page goes to (and opens) for the same record in a different .asp page, where the user won't have to re-type in the "entry code" to open that 2nd .asp page record.

    (The entry code is a value entered in one of the query's fields (last name, id number, etc.) that is used to open the .asp form for a specific record).

    The problem has been my inability to efficiently and clearly ask this question, and I have to apologize to everyone who has been trying to help me with this in this forum.

    And, as you agreed with me in your previous reply, having sample pages in an FP site should help get many questions answered (on public forums).

    I have finally created the Sample FP website I spoke of previously, and will be adding sample .asp forms/database shortly, and will be able to add links to such samples on the FP sample site as part of a forum-appropriate question, so that any specific question I may have (Eg" How do I do this same, specific task in a VS/ASP.net environment?" will work as per your comment.

    If an issue such as this one can be resolved through an appropriate forum, then great.

    However, if the solution for a specific issue may be more involved than could be (or should be) able to resolve within a public forum, then I may have to turn to getting the solution from a private, one-on-one tutor (reasonable) to help me make the transition from FP to VS/ASP.net, who will hopefully work along with me more permanently as my business needs expand.

    Trust me, I really want to get away from Windows XP, which FP also ties me down to.

    I'm open to comments or suggestions on that one from anyone in this forum, (if this is the appropriate way for me to solicit such a service).

    I will post a link in this forum to the sample, FP-built .asp page as quickly as possible in the hopes of moving forward from this specific issue.

    As Expressionweb became Microsoft's "sort of, but not quite" replacement for Frontpage, maybe one of the regular forum members has specific familiarity with the way FP's Frontpage "Wizard" (never been a big fan of that term) inserts a hyperlink parameter for a link contained within an .asp page, which is currently a hyperlink parameter that opens a specific .htm (related to a specific field within that .asp page) and not to another .asp for the same record(which is what I need).

    Whatever it takes me to find out how to do this, it should become an easier issue to learn and carry over to whatever will be required to create/mimic/re-create the function of that same FP-built .asp page with an asp.net-built page in VS and/or Expressionweb.

    However, as you noted earlier, I have to maintain whatever I have going on my FP web until I can comfortably make the transition. In my current issue, I have to get someone to show me how to perform the function mentioned above within the confines of such an antiquated (FP) platform.

    If this will eventually elevate me from being a "half-assed" developer and end use, to a "3/4-assed" developer and end user, then hey......all the better!

    Thanks,

    Ron

    Saturday, February 3, 2018 4:49 PM
  • "familiarity with the way FP's Frontpage "Wizard" (never been a big fan of that term) inserts a hyperlink parameter for a link contained within an .asp page, which is currently a hyperlink parameter that opens a specific .htm (related to a specific field within that .asp page) and not to another .asp for the same record(which is what I need)."

    Rather than talking about the FP wizard, can you simply describe - completely absent of any reference to the FP wizard - what you want to do?  In plain English: how do you want the page(s) to behave?


    Kathleen Wilber
    BrightWillow - Asp.Net Applications


    • Edited by KathyW2 Saturday, February 3, 2018 5:36 PM
    Saturday, February 3, 2018 5:35 PM
  • Well I don't know if this helps, but are you aware of the Panel control in asp.net? I'm wondering if using several different panels on a single page would keep you from needing to transfer information between pages. You can have a bunch of panels -- Panel1, Panel1, Panel3 etc on the page and transfer between panels.

    For example, you can have  stuff in Panel1 show up when a user first opens a page with Panel2 and Panel3 not showing. Real easy to do in code-behind -- in the Page Load subroutine you would have something like:

    Panel1.visible=True
    Panel2.visible=False
    Panel3.visible=False  etc.

    You could have textbox1, textbox2, textbox3 etc in Panel1 for the user to input information and a button that says "Continue"

    When the user clicks the Continue button, instead of going to a new page you take the user to Panel2 (by making it visible).  You put the stuff that would have been on that new page in Panel2 and when the Continue button is clicked you put in the ButtonClick subroutine:

    Panel1.visible=False
    Panel2.visible=True

    Now -- instead of having to pass the value of Textbox1 to another page for use there, it is already available for use in Panel2 -- you would just refer to textbox1.text to get its value for use wherever you need it in Panel2.  The value is still there on the page for use in queries or whatever, it just is not visible to the user. 

    Like I said, I don't really know why you are sending people off to different pages and trying to carry information along with them, so I don't really know if the above would work for you. But if it will, it would be easier --



    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor
    Database Tutorials Using ASP.NET Controls
    My recommended web hosting company: RDOServers

    Saturday, February 3, 2018 8:36 PM
  • "familiarity with the way FP's Frontpage "Wizard" (never been a big fan of that term) inserts a hyperlink parameter for a link contained within an .asp page, which is currently a hyperlink parameter that opens a specific .htm (related to a specific field within that .asp page) and not to another .asp for the same record(which is what I need)."

    Rather than talking about the FP wizard, can you simply describe - completely absent of any reference to the FP wizard - what you want to do?  In plain English: how do you want the page(s) to behave?

    Thank you, Kathy. I'm not sure why we're not getting through, but I think it might have to do with this:

    maybe one of the regular forum members has specific familiarity

    Despite the fact that all three of us, the only "regular forum members" who are still here and who are participating in this discussion, have made abundantly clear that we no longer use, or even have installed, FrontPage, he seems to refuse to recognize that reality and clings to a forlorn hope that some knight will come galloping out of history who can understand "FrontPage-ese" terminology.

    Ron, please get that out of your head, at least so far as posting in this forum. There are now very few of us supporting this forum, and AFAIK, no one remains who is actively using, or has used in many years, FP in production applications. So, you cannot couch your question in terms of how FP does it. We don't know, and can't remember, no matter how much you wish it were not so.

    Just for one example, you repeatedly refer to a ""hyperlink parameter," even underlining it. However, if you google that term, what comes back is basically what we have described several times—using a querystring in a URL passed to the next page called, and retrieving it using code in the receiving page. I provided you a link that showed not one, but four different methods to pass such data with ASP/VBScript, two of which used querystrings.. All of them require that you be able to edit the actual page source code that FP has produced, whether using "wizards" or other FP editing tools. To get to the page source, just press Ctrl-PgDn to open the raw source code of the page (if it works the same for ASP pages as for HTML). There you can enter the ASP/VBScript code to effect one of those methods. BTW, note that one example shows how to create a button or other image that you just click to launch the other page and pass the values.

    Trust me, I really want to get away from Windows XP, which FP also ties me down to.

    You repeatedly mention having to use XP for your FP2000 installation. Why on earth would you do that? Out of curiosity, to see if it would work, I just successfully installed FP2000 in my existing VMWare Workstation Player virtual machine with Win7 Home Premium ($24.00 on eBay) installed. Before I could do that, I had to install FP97(!), because my FP2000 was an upgrade version, and back in the day upgrade versions checked for the existence of a "qualifying product," in this case, FP97, before proceeding to install. Both installed flawlessly, and ran without issue on Win7 when invoked. So, what made you decide to use the no longer supported WinXP? Note that I don't intend to actually use it; that dog is long dead. I just wondered if it would, in fact, install on Win7.

    Anyway, as Kathy requested, please couch your questions in terms that do not refer to FP wizards, e.g. "I would like to concatenate the current record's (query's, etc.) membername and membercode values and pass them to the next page. On that page I want to retrieve them and automatically fill a form field which will be used to recover that member's record for further processing." Like that. Nothing to do with wizards. Also note that this presupposes that you will be able to write actual ASP/VBScript code on the page, not by using a wizard, unless one exists for that purpose (Does it? E.g. "Insert HTML here").

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Sunday, February 4, 2018 11:30 PM
    Sunday, February 4, 2018 11:22 PM
  • Now -- instead of having to pass the value of Textbox1 to another page for use there, it is already available for use in Panel2 -- you would just refer to textbox1.text to get its value for use wherever you need it in Panel2.  The value is still there on the page for use in queries or whatever, it just is not visible to the user.

    Like I said, I don't really know why you are sending people off to different pages and trying to carry information along with them, so I don't really know if the above would work for you. But if it will, it would be easier --


    ClarkNK AKA HomePage Doctor

    Damn! Why the hell didn't that occur to me, too? Thanks much, Clark, for making the obvious explicit (and that is meant sincerely, not sarcastically! ;-).

    Hey, Ron, why are you bothering to use multiple pages? Say you want to break it up into... oh, three queries. Clark's method (using panels) is great, and would certainly address your issue, but only if you work in ASP.NET. However, you can accomplish basically the same thing using standard HTML and ASP, with CSS, all with staying on one page, in which case the values you want to "pass" are all still in scope on the page and available to you.

    Here's what you do—create four divs. The first three contain the controls, etc. (i.e. form input fields, select controls, etc.) that represent whatever you need for each of the three queries; the fourth is the "result" page. Set the display attribute of the second, third, and fourth divs to "hidden." When the user fills out the first query and clicks "Continue," just set the first div's display attribute to "hidden," and the second to "block," which does just what it sounds like.

    To the user, it seems that he has gone to another page, but he hasn't, and even though they're not visible, variables set in the first div are still in scope and available in the second. When the user finishes filling out the second div, set it to "hidden" and the third to "block," and continue. When he finishes that div (form) and clicks "Finish," (or whatever you're using), hide that div and show the results page (4th div).

    Done, and no need whatsoever to pass variables between pages. You do need to understand how variables work, and how to manipulate them (or the contents of form fields) to pass (reference) the information from one query to the next, but that will let you break your oversize queries into three parts without leaving the initial page. Will that work for you?

    cheers,
    scott


    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.

    • Edited by paladyn Monday, February 5, 2018 12:27 AM
    Monday, February 5, 2018 12:07 AM