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Book Review : ASP.NET Site Performance Secrets

Book Summary

 

Any web site developer sooner or later encounters a situation where he or the client is not so happy with the performance of the web site under consideration. No wonder experienced developers look for opportunities to squeeze last drop of performance from their web sites. To that end, ASP.NET Site Performance Secrets provides sound understand of the time proven techniques of performance optimization.

A common mistake committed by many beginner to intermediate level developers is that they think about performance bit later in the project life cycle. When they realize that their web site is not performing well they sit and try to dissect the problem. In the process they often end up spending much more time in re-working and fine tuning the code. If developers take care of the suggestions and recommendations mentioned in this book chances are that their web site will be performance oriented from the very beginning. Later, of course, they may need to give finishing touches for best possible performance but since they have designed the web site keeping performance in mind the efforts required will be much less.

The book consists of 14 chapters in total and cover a wide range of performance related topics and issues.

The term "performance" can be little vague unless you are aware which part of the web site you are talking about. Chapter 1 discuss several areas of a typical web site where performance can be improved. They include - server side processing, data transfer between client and server, image loading and so on. Chapter 2 builds on what has been discussed in Chapter 1 and discusses possible bottlenecks on server side that can hamper the performance.

Chapter 3 and 4 discuss memory - program memory and CPU memory. Topics such as Garbage Collection, StringBuilder, Counters, Session variables, connection pooling, Threading are covered in these two chapters.

Chapter 5 covers ASP.NET Caching features in detail. Output caching and data caching techniques are discussed here.

Many developers never think of using asynchronous processing for their web sites. The Chapter 6 explains threading and asynchronous programming techniques.

Chapter 8 discusses techniques to speedup your data access code. Issues such as indexing, expensive queries, locking, disk access are covered in this chapter.

Chapter 9 talks about optimizing ViewState and few other tips and tricks related to Web Forms and server controls that will help you improve performance of the page display.

Chapter 10 discusses compression in details and covers how to configure compression in IIS6 and IIS7.

Chapter 11 shows various ways of optimizing web forms and server controls. Chapter 12 further tells you how image loading time can be reduced.

In modern web sites use of JavaScript and related libraries (such as jQuery) has increased to a great extent. Hence, it has become important for developers to know how to deal with client scripts and script load times. Chapter 13 teaches you just that.

Finally, Chapter 14 tells you how to perform Load Tests on your web site and discusses WCAT, VSTS and VS 2010 Ultimate with respect to load testing.

Though the book follows natural flow of chapters there is a scope for better arrangement and clear chapter titles. For example, consider these chapter titles - Reducing Time to First Byte, Reducing Long Wait Times, Reducing Time to Last Byte. Though an experienced developer can sense the difference immediately, for a beginner it might be bit confusing to figure out what each chapter might be discussing. Also, the arrangement of chapter could have been area wise. For example, all web forms related chapters together, all hardware related information together, all threading related information together etc. One more area not fully addressed is MVC specific performance tips. Though many things are directly applicable to MVC applications too, talking specifically in MVC terms would have been great.

Overall, this book gives a good understanding of ASP.NET performance enhancement techniques. If you are beginner to intermediate level developer looking to develop performance oriented web sites this book can give you a good start.

 


Bipin Joshi is a software consultant, an author and a yoga mentor having 22+ years of experience in software development. He also conducts online courses in ASP.NET MVC / Core and Design Patterns. He is a published author and has authored or co-authored books for Apress and Wrox press. Having embraced the Yoga way of life he also teaches Meditation and Mindfulness to interested individuals. To know more about him click here.

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Posted On : 25 February 2011


Tags : ASP.NET Data Access Web Forms Architecture JavaScript Multithreading Reviews Performance