Understanding ASP.NET Server Controls

ASP.NET Server Controls are tags that are understood and run by the server. ASP.NET Server Controls help developers create web-applications that can be opened and used in any browser. ASP.NET Server Controls automatically generate HTML code for that browser, thereby preserving developer’s time to write code for different types of browsers. ASP.NET Server Controls are almost similar to HTML controls, but that HTML controls does not run at the server-side. Moreover, ASP.NET Server Controls automatically detect the target browser’s capability and adapt itself to that browser. The types of ASP.NET Server Controls are:

• HTML Server Controls: Refers to HTML controls that run at the server-side. They use the attributes similar to HTML controls, but the only difference is HTML controls are client-side script whereas HTML Server Controls are server-side.

• ASP.NET Validation Controls: Refers to a set of controls that are used to check or validate the data entered in a web form.

• ASP.NET Web Form Controls: Refers to a set of controls that have a common set of property names that can be used across many controls. The Web Form controls help developers to build applications that automatically generate user-interface. It also simplifies the way of creating an interactive web forms.

• ASP.NET List Controls: Refers to a set of controls such as list box, drop-down list, datalist, and datagrid that are used to access contents from a data source. List controls use the concept of data binding.

• ASP.NET Rich Controls: Refers to two types of controls such as calendar and adrotator. These controls are used for complex tasks. These controls automatically update the output of the page based on the device that requests the page.

• ASP.NET Mobile Controls: Refers to a set of controls that help developers in developing mobile web applications. They create output in markup language to suit small mobile devices such as cell phones, PDAs, and pagers.

In an ASP.NET web form, you can use both server and HTML controls. But the big question is when you should use ASP.NET Server Controls. You can use ASP.NET Server Controls if you want to access the element’s properties, methods, or events at server-side code. But another question arises here is that which element you want to be a server control. You may not use ASP.NET Server Controls when the element is used to run client-side script. For example, if a button in a web form only interacts with the client-side ActiveX control or Java applet then the button need not have server-side script. Moreover, if the element is a button that only submits a form to the server or a hyperlink that opens only a different page of the application.

Apart from all these advantages in using ASP.NET Server Controls, it also has some disadvantages. You do not have direct or full control over ASP.NET Server Controls because the control of the code is inbuilt with the web server controls. Moreover, migration of ASP to ASP.NET application is difficult, because you have to rewrite a new application altogether.

| Why should you go for Server Controls | Advantages of using .NET Server Controls | Understanding ASP.NET Server Controls | Creating Web Server Controls | Server Side Controls in ASP.Net | Creating Custom Server Controls | Server Controls in ASP.NET Web Page | Using Html Server Controls in your Web Pages | Understanding Dynamic Server Controls in ASP.NET | Using ASP Server Controls Templates | Developing ASP.NET Server Controls | Setting properties for ASP.NET Custom Server Controls | Implementing ASP.NET Server Side Controls | Creating Professional ASP.NET Server Controls |

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