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Windows Application vs Web Application

Posted on 2008-06-22
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Last Modified: 2009-04-22
I am in confusion that whether I should build standard products (like Hotel project, Accounts project) that are in .Net Windows Applciation or Asp.Net web application. Web application can work in both as desktop (localhost) as well as web-based. So is there any functionality that can be implemented only in .net Windows Application and not in Asp.Net web application? Will it do if I build all my products in Asp.Net and use them as both desktop (localhost) & web-based? Or is there any limitation of Asp.Net as compared to Windows Application?
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Question by:ShreyaTrivedi
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kennethfine earned 1000 total points
ID: 21840487
Hi there. In the past, Web appllications were known for having less usable, less responsive user interfaces. AJAX interfaces have changed all of that -- the application can work "asynchronously", and the user doesn't have to sit and wait for pages to refresh and the like. For the kinds of applications you are describing, I would probably recommend a Web interface vs. a traditional Windows Forms application.

If you were working with high-performance graphics or other features that aren't possible in a web interface, you would have a compelling reason not to build as a web application.  In certain super-high-security scenarios a forms-based application could probably be made more secure than a standard webapp. If you wanted really really rich next-generation vector-based interface capabilities, you might want to use a desktop application with WPF, which is more capable than HTML/AJAX and Silverlight, which is a browser-based subset of WPF.

It does not sound like you are interested in all the things I mention in the last paragraph, so in your place I would probably choose a web application. As you note, you'll have the option of using it locally or on the web as required.

Happy programmming!
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by:ShreyaTrivedi
ID: 21840517
What do you mean by "really rich next-generation vector-based interface capabilities" & WPF?
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by:ShreyaTrivedi
ID: 21840521
Will there be much difference in terms of speed? I mean , will the web application work too slowly as compared to windows application?
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by:kennethfine
ID: 21840529
If you don't know what WPF is, don't worry about it. You can google for "WPF" or visit "Silverlight.net" if you want to learn more about these related technologies.

Regarding your speed question: The advantage of working with AJAX is that the application will seem to the user to be extremely fast and responsive -- there is no wating for page refreshes.  

AJAX can be hard, but if you're working in .NET and you have some money to spend, check out Telerik's component set:
http://telerik.com

Their AJAX control set for ASP.NET is extremely powerful, looks nice, and works well.
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