input control values get persisted in postback WITHOUT viewstate ?

Posted on 2009-05-14
Last Modified: 2012-05-07
A few weeks into and a newbie question...

Have I got this right ?

In an *.aspx page, as long as the <form> is set to runat="server", then ANY (i.e. HTML, web-) controls with runat="server" will have their last/current values reset after a postback occurs
..(and here's the key..).. WITHOUT needing viewstate enabled

IE when the page gets submitted to itself ASP.NET uses the form data to see what the current values of the controls are, and if they are runat=server, sets them to the same value in the new page ?

THEREFORE: viewstate is only needed for control info that is NOT sent in form data, e.g. color, font etc. (or for controls not marked as runat=server, but why you'd want to do this.... etc. etc.), or for custom info the programmer adds to viewstate "manually"...

Empirically, by running tests, this seems to happen
However TWO books by Apress fail to mention this KEY FACT !!, apart from a few asides in UNRELATED chapters....

ALSO, can anyone point me to an official documentation (or failing that unofficial) that verifies this and explains/confirms it

many thanks!!
Question by:zorba111
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Author Comment

ID: 24383614
this looks like a good UNOFFICIAL explanation

still holding out for Official docs, or more succinct unofficial explains
LVL 19

Accepted Solution

daveamour earned 500 total points
ID: 24392786
Viewstate has nothing to do with input controls maintaining inputted data.
This article is brilliant, a little long but well worth the read if you have time. 

Author Comment

ID: 24393456
thanks Dave, that is a great article !!

I got 80% of it on first read, which movre than covered my questions. Now I feel like an cognoscenti and which is not bad for 3 weeks in. oh my swelling head! :-)
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LVL 19

Expert Comment

ID: 24393465
I've been doing for 7 years and still feel like a beginner!

Author Comment

ID: 24393492
I know my feelings of imperiousness will not last long as no doubt I will hit another humbling problem quite soon - such is the way of tech

but for the moment I'm enjoying the conceit....

thanks again for the pointer
LVL 19

Expert Comment

ID: 24393503
Your welcome and yes once youve learned everything it will all be obsolete!

Author Comment

ID: 24393768
you're right, how often these days have I had to create a COM object, implement an interface, or use an ATL ?

or for that matter hook into a windows message pump ?
or do memory management in Win32

many a weighty tome gathering dust on my shelf

LVL 19

Expert Comment

ID: 24393778
Yep they make great door stoppers or firewood!

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