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Standalone application with HTML interface and COM engine

Posted on 2006-06-19
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I would like to create a standalone application that uses an HTML interface and a COM+ engine in a way similar to using ASP over the Internet.  I need to distribute this application on laptops and tablet PCs (which will not have Internet access) and would like to take advantage of the interface provided by HTML.  Would it be best to use .Net?  Any thoughts on how to best design this type of application would be appreciated.  Thanks.
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Question by:TheChos
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by:nicolasn
ID: 16941692
TheChos,

If I am understanding you correctly, you may be interested in these "offline" asp processors, or "compilers" as some call them.  Both of them are targeted at application developers who want to distribute asp applications on CD-ROM.

DWebPro: http://www.dwebpro.com/

ActiveSite: http://www.octopod.net/Products/ActiveSiteCompiler/overview.asp

Regards,
Nicolas
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Author Comment

by:TheChos
ID: 16941814
Thanks for the reply.  Although the products you suggested appear to be able to help me with my project, I'm more interested in determining the capabilities of ASP, COM+, .Net and other software applications.
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Expert Comment

by:cool12399
ID: 16944739
What exactly are you trying to do? Basically create an 'internet'/'browser' app using ASP?
Assuming you've purchased (or have access to) Visual Studio, use the personal web server & associated
extensions. (PWS). Then you can knock yourself out silly writing com based apps w/com+ (i.e., ISAPII extensions,
etc). Personally I'd say COM+ sucks, and no idea why you'd want to use it, but if you must, you must :)

.Net kinda sucks as well for various reasons, although some newbie coders or those basically forced by their
companies swear by it. .Net sucks because its bloated, and if you need to actually write anything that makes
money, well, .net is not the best way to go. If you are just using it for enterprise apps, and are doing B2B type
things, then go for it.
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Author Comment

by:TheChos
ID: 16944995
I'm trying to migrate ASP pages, COM+ code and a SQL Database from an IIS server to a laptop computer.  The goal is to accomplish this with as little effort as possible.  On the laptop I would subsitute Access for SQL Server.
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Expert Comment

by:nmcdermaid
ID: 16948041
You might want to use MSDE instead of MS Access.

MSDE is free and is 100% compatible with SQL Server. It is designed for 'personal use'

MS Access is not free and you're going to have to convert all your database interfaces if you want to use MS Access.

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nicolasn earned 500 total points
ID: 16948721
ASP, by nature, requires a Microsoft (or clone) webserver to process the script code in the ASP pages.  To move your application to a laptop, you have two basic routes to follow:

1) Install a webserver on your laptop.  If you are using XP Pro(2000?) then you simply need to add the IIS component, or if you are using an older version of windows you will need PWS as suggested by cool12399.

2) Dispense with the need for for a webserver by using one of the products I suggested in my previous post.

I will second nmcdermaid on the suggestion to use MSDE (or the SQL2005 version: SQL 2005 Express - FREE) since your "goal is to accomplish this with as little effort as possible".

Nicolas
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Author Comment

by:TheChos
ID: 16951484
Thanks for the information.  I'll take a look at the products you suggested.
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Expert Comment

by:nicolasn
ID: 16951860
Thanks for the points ThChos.

By the way, i have just confirmed my memory: Both Windopws XP and Windows 2000 Pro have an IIS component.  Go to Control Panel > Add/Remove Programs and select "Windows Components".  Again, older versions of Windows will require PWS from the VS6 cd set.

Secondly, there may also be other asp processors available - try a google search, and don't rely on the keyword "processor" since there may well be a more appropriate one.

Cheers,
Nicolas

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Author Comment

by:TheChos
ID: 16953469
nicolasn,

Thanks for the follow up,  It really helped me.
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Author Comment

by:TheChos
ID: 16953503
One last question.  Are you aware of any consequences to installing and using the IIS component on my laptop?
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Expert Comment

by:nicolasn
ID: 16957496
TheChos,

My only comment would be to ensure that all the patches from Windows Update get installed to protect yourself from viruses.  If the laptop will be on the internet much, I would suggest some "personal firewall" software, at least XP SP2's Windows Firewall - but this is a recommendation even if you are not using IIS.

It may be worth a new question in a suitable topic area to get a more indepth response.

Nicolas
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Author Comment

by:TheChos
ID: 16959361
A new question is a good idea.  Thank you for your time.
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