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Developing a Web UI DLL Using VB

Hoping for a better development environment that would solve these problems, I did some research and experiments, and found that it is indeed possible to use full-blown VB to develop Web applications. And I'm not talking about the ill-fated ActiveX Documents or VB6 WebClasses techniques.

In this article, I demonstrate this by building a simple Web UI for the Publishers table found in the ubiquitous Biblio.mdb database. Note that for brevity's sake, my sample code isn't as robust as it probably should be. I also assume that you are familiar with using ASP, VBScript, and either Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS) or Microsoft Personal Web Server (PWS) to develop and debug Web applications. It is also helpful if you have experience with developing ActiveX DLL components.

The key to this technique is based on the fact that ASP can call methods in COM components (for example, ADO and the ASP intrinsic objects), and that VB can be used to create COM components. A curious developer might then conclude that it should be possible to put all of a Web application's logic into a COM component that was developed with VB, use a simple ASP file to call a single method in that component, and pass it references to the intrinsic ASP objects. It turns out that it is relatively easy to do this.

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