More commonly referred to as Classic ASP, Active Server Page is the first server side scripting engine developed by Microsoft. It enables one to make webpages which are dynamic, as well as interactive. ASP makes use of server side scripting to produce webpages dynamically in such a way that the resultant webpages are not impacted by the browser from which the webpage has been visited.

The built-in scripting language for ASP is VBScript, but JScript, Microsoft’s version of JavaScript can also be used for this purpose. Webpages created using Classic ASP have the extension .asp instead of .htm. This implies that when a webpage with .asp is requested by a browser, the server interprets any ASP in the webpage and then sends HTML produced by this interpretation to the browser.

History of ASP

The earliest version of ASP was launched as an add-on to the Internet Information Services through the Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack in the year 1996. Since the release of the Windows 200 server, it is included in the Windows server as a free component. Three editions of ASP have been released, each one being accompanied by a different edition of the IIS:

  • In December 1996, ASP 1.0 was released along with IIS 3.0.
  • In September 1997, ASP 2.0 was lunched, being a part of the IIS 4.0. This newer version came with six default object, namely: Request, Application, Response, ASPError, Session and Server. Session object is involved in maintaining the state of variable from one page to another. ASP websites are also allowed to access functionality in compiled libraries like DLLs because the Active Scripting engine has support for the Component Object Model (COM).
  • In November 2000, the IIS 5.0 was released along with the ASP 3.0. There aren’t many major differences between ASP 3.0 and 2.0. However, there some extra improvements in version 3.0 of ASP. These include the Server.Execute and Server.Transfer methods, as well as a better ASPError object. This version also allows for buffering (a built-in feature), leading to enhanced performance of the engine.

The support for ASP is present in Windows Operating Systems like Windows 7, Vista, 8 and 10 at present. However, the support for ASP in Windows 7 would be ended on 14th January 2020. Prior to the release of Windows 8, it was stated the support for ASP in the operating system would last for at least 10 years after its launch.

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