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*.jsp vs *.asp

Pros and Cons



5:46 am on Apr 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I have been asked recently to code some pages to pull data from a SQL database. I know little scripting but I have been given time to learn. My client is a company that is actually bidding the job and then contracting to me. This company prefers I script jsp pages but said asp was alright. I have experience with asp but none jsp what are the pros and cons if any when comparing the two? Also can anyone recommend some good tutorial sites for either type of page that I could use as a reference?



6:15 pm on Apr 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member txbakers is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

OK, big topic here and one I am thick in the middle of right now, so I will share my experience, and will welcome the discussion.

First the similarities:
Both require good programming skills and logical thought.
Both are essentially platform independent these days.
Both can provide full SQL database functionality.
You can code the same simple page in both languages and the user won't be able to tell the difference.

Some differences:
ASP (classic) is interpreted, which means the code has to be read each time a page is called. JSP is compiled into java classes which makes for a much faster page generation.

ASP can be coded in a variety of languages including javascript, VBScript. JSP is coded in Java.

Classic ASP (not the new .NET) has to rely on Active X, COM or other microsoft technologies to really enhance functionality of the code. JSP can bring in every java capability.

Handling email in ASP requires external components such as CDONTS or ASPMail and was tricky to implement. JavaMail for JSP was a 10 minute download and was much easier to use.

Personally, I find JSP to be much more robust than ASP. You have more tools available to you. But both will get the job done.

I just "finished" (are they really ever finished?) a major ASP site over mySQL that has close to 2500 pages of code with some pretty impressive stuff. I'm starting on a similar project using JSP now, and have the books at the ready and get frustrated with the different syntax and calls, etc. but plow through.

I wrote another pretty involved ASP site in about 72 hours once, because I was so fluent in it.

Which is better is really subjective.

A good ASP tutorial is available at www.w3schools.com
A good JSP tutorial is available from java.sun.com

There is a good article from March 2001 comparing the two technologies at sdmagazine.com, but I can't give the full URL here. You need to register and sign in, etc. It's by Jim Farley so you can search for it.

Let's here more about this one.


9:02 pm on Apr 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Our site uses jsp, Oracle, and a Java/xml cms, a combination that has worked quite well. Pages are primarily rendered via realtime XSL transformation but owing to the vaguaries of caching and servlets, the results are as zippy as our old static HTML site (and with vast extensibility). Have a look at www.jspin.com for resources.

A couple of recent WebmasterWorld threads on the same topic include [webmasterworld.com...] and [webmasterworld.com...] .


9:52 pm on Apr 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Lemme verify that I understand correctly...JSP uses JAVA not JavaScript. This means that I would need a Java compiler but with asp I can just script it.

The Java classes run server side, client side or either?

Thanks for the info so far, I just wanted to clarify a few questions I had...


10:46 pm on Apr 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member txbakers is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Yes, JSP runs JAVA all server side. (just like ASP) You will to install the Java SDK, free from sun. Also, you will need to install some type of JSP container such as Webshpere or JRun from macromedia. You can also download and install Tomcat for free from jakarta.

With ASP you still need a container, but if your server is IIS, you have it built in already. (One advantage of using IIS). If you run on a Linux platform, you will need some type of ASP container such as SunONE from java (formerly ChiliSoft)

You can still run javascript client side on your JSP pages, but you code the server side login in Java.


12:50 am on Apr 13, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

But, you could also send an applet within the generated code to the Browser and the Applet then will run on the client side.

Most games run on client side. Excellent performing GUIs with Java has something to do with the client side code.

I am very much interested in Java (both client and server side) I love it.



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