ASP. NET 3. 5 Enterprise Application Development with Visual Studio 2008: Problem Design Solution

Overview

This book provides a step-by-step guide for developing an ASP.NET 3.5 application using the latest features in Visual Studio 2008. The Problem Design Solution series by Wrox is unique because it describes a large case study and builds an entire solution chapter by chapter for each incremental step. This book uses a wide variety of new features in Visual Studio 2008, explains each in detail, and produces a solution that you can use as a starting point for your own applications.

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Overview

This book provides a step-by-step guide for developing an ASP.NET 3.5 application using the latest features in Visual Studio 2008. The Problem Design Solution series by Wrox is unique because it describes a large case study and builds an entire solution chapter by chapter for each incremental step. This book uses a wide variety of new features in Visual Studio 2008, explains each in detail, and produces a solution that you can use as a starting point for your own applications.

If you are responsible for designing or developing enterprise-wide applications, departmental applications, portals, or any line of business application, then this book is for you. Many applications have a similar set of features, and this book builds an application with some of the most common features of enterprise applications. Let’s face it: Every application has the same general set of features, but implemented in a different way. A database sits in the back end and you, as the developer, are responsible for enabling users to add, update, select, and delete records. If only it were that simple, no?

The real development work starts when you sit with users and try to understand the business process and why they need a new or improved system in the first place. A lot of companies have departments that use Excel and Access wizards to create small systems that eventually become a lifeline for some part of the business. Usually something bad happens because of the nature of the tool they are using. Senior-level management is called in, project managers are hired, programmers are contracted, and the Project Management Office (PMO) is called to save the world. Suddenly this loosely defined process is high priority and people want documented standard operating procedures, audit reports, more productivity, less people, and of course a system that can do it all, which is where you come in. When you think about it, it’s a pretty daunting task. You’re expected to become an expert in someone else’s business process, flaws and all, and create a system that the company will rely on as the backbone for their existence. OK, maybe I’m exaggerating just a little bit, but when you go looking for that raise you might want to phrase it that way.

This book will give you the tools necessary to build a framework that can be extended to create a solution to solve your company’s problems. The design pattern uses the normal three layers, the user interface (UI), the business logic layer (BLL), and the data access layer (DAL), but also builds the classes in each layer that encapsulate common business rules such as role-based security, workflow, reporting, dynamic menus, data entry, dynamic querying, notifications, exception handling, and auditing. As the book guides you through the complete solution, each business requirement is thoroughly examined and some of the latest enhancements in ASP.NET 3.5 and Visual Studio 2008 are used to implement them in a reusable framework.

Enterprise applications are typically complex, and the teams that build enterprise applications come in all shapes and sizes. Some of the roles include a project sponsor, a project manager, business analysts, an architect, UI developers, middle-tier developers, database developers, and, if you’re really lucky, testers. Just a side note: Users are not testers. If you ever have the pleasure of working with professional testers, you’ll realize how important they are in the process, and how they truly are “quality” assurance engineers. Unfortunately, a lot of companies aren’t willing to invest in professional testers, so the users and/or developers end up assuming that role. This book is mainly focused on the architect and developers, but testers may find it valuable as well to help them understand the plumbing that goes into developing and architecting an enterprise application.

This book is for the intermediate to senior level developer or system architect. It would be helpful if you have experience with Visual Studio, the .NET Framework, ASP.NET, and C# because that is what the samples are written in, but the design pattern could be used in any language. The book is focused on enterprise applications, but the pattern could be used for any type of application that has a web front end and connects to a database. The application framework built in this book provides a foundation that can be extended to meet the specific business needs of your organization.

The sample application in this book is built using Visual Studio 2008, ASP.NET 3.5, C#, and SQL Server 2005. Each chapter goes into great detail, with plenty of code samples, and uses some of the new features in Visual Studio 2008 and the language enhancements in the .NET Framework 3.5. The solution includes examples for technologies such as LINQ to SQL, master pages, custom controls, GridViews, business objects, data objects, and Crystal Reports. Some of the language enhancements discussed include LINQ, extension methods, partial methods, automatic properties, anonymous types, lambda expressions, and object initializers.

Of course, I realize that the code is what most developers are interested in, and each chapter provides numerous examples.

The Problem Design Solution series is just that. Each chapter has three sections with a description of the problem to be addressed, the design considerations for choosing a solution for the problem, and the solution that ultimately addresses the problem. The solution includes the bulk of the code. Each chapter builds upon the previous chapter, and it is recommended that you read them in order. The base classes that are described in the first few chapters are critical to an understanding of the rest of the book. Later chapters build upon the base classes and extend their functionality in all three layers of the application.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470396865
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/3/2009
  • Pages: 484
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Vince Varallo has been developing applications for over twelve years using Microsoft technologies and is currently the Director of Application Development for MTI Information Technologies. He develops marketing applications for the pharmaceutical industry using ASP.NET and SQL Server. Prior to working at MTI, he worked in the clinical and the financial industries on a wide array of projects such as clinical data management systems, internal portals, and treasury workstation software. Vince enjoys exploring new technologies but always finds time for golf, biking, and watching the Phillies. He previously co-authored Professional Visual Basic 6: The 2003 Programmer’s Resource.

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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 A Framework for Enterprise Applications 1

Ch. 2 The Data Access Layer 11

Ch. 3 Designing the Business Logic Layer 47

Ch. 4 The User Interface Layer 69

Ch. 5 Exception Handling 127

Ch. 6 Role-Based Security 155

Ch. 7 The Workflow Engine 201

Ch. 8 Notifications 291

Ch. 9 Reporting 323

Ch. 10 The Query Builder Control 357

Ch. 11 The Dashboard 399

Ch. 12 Auditing 419

Ch. 13 Code Generator 445

Index 465

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2010

    Good book, interesting ideas, should have included new technologies

    The ASP.NET Enterprise Application Development book, which is part of the Problem/Design/Solution series, is setup as a book that illustrates the problem first, then moves to the design (and looks at various design possibilities), and finishes up with the solution to implement. The sample project for this book is a time-tracking opportunity, an application to log employee's time.

    Each chapter of the book looks to layout the fundamentals of a business application, starting with the data access, business, and presentation layers. The rest of the book is spent looking at the various features that the application needed (exception handling, security, workflow, etc.). Most of the scenarios in the chapters use a code-specific implementation to solving the problem, rather than using other tools available to developers (for instance, the workflow chapter doesn't leverage Windows Workflow Foundation). Though there are a few tools used, like Crystal Reports and Enterprise Library.

    The book has an interesting approach in how it implements the business logic; business applications are much different than personal web sites and other application types because they depend on the success of their business rules. That is one of the focuses of the book, setting up how to structure your code so that you may handle the various business needs of the application.

    The chapters that create specific features for the application (reporting, workflow, etc.) use a code-specific approach to creating these features. The book lays out the changes to the database and data model, illustrates the stored procedures for the change, and then moves into the design solution. Each new feature has a new ASP.NET page that he demonstrates fully along with any changes to styles, master pages, etc. Each book discusses the chapter to the fullest detail, from the proc to the finished solution.

    The style of the book typically follows the explanation of the business problem at the beginning. When the book illustrates code, the author shows the code first, and follows up with an explanation of the solution. In the design section, the book does discuss the various components that it does use to complete the solution (such as Crystal Reports for reporting and Enterprise Library for exception handling).

    I was hoping the book was going to look more into using various design patterns within ASP.NET. Although there are some, the architecture is pretty much the same throughout the application. Additionally, the UI later doesn't use much ASP.NET AJAX JavaScript implementations or a script library like JQuery, but leverages most of the logic on the server-side and, when necessary, leverages the update panel control.

    While I don't know that I would use the same architecture, I do like some of the features he implemented in the app and look to see how I may utilize this for my own development.

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