I can only think of one advantage to using Foxpro data with ASP.NET 3.5:
- Your boss can manipulate the data using Foxpro
The disadvantages include poor performance and/or unexplained errors and even data corruption.
There is a VERY active community of people who mix and match Visual FoxPro (VFP) and .NET quite a bit that I think could provide a lot of useful information for you:
In fact, if you ask this same question there you'll get much more detailed answers.
The owner of that site has written many articles on the subject of FoxPro and .NET and has even written a wrapper for communication between the two, wwDotNetBridge, part of the West Wind Internet Client Tools for VFP:
However, that tool is for accessing .NET from VFP. Oddly absent from his site that spans many years is a detailed explanation on accessing VFP data from .NET. The reason for this is, he doesn't recommend it (from what I've gathered from talking to him in person). The OBDC driver is woefully out-of-date and the OLE DB Driver can have serious issues unless it is only used for reads.
Here's a post on his forum from a very respected FoxPro expert, Doug Hennig, about the various ways of connecting to VFP data:
Here's a post on his forum about issues with the OLE DB:
You are bound to run into the same problems and more if you proceed down the path your boss wants.
A much better solution, IMO, is to either stick with native FoxPro for web development (for now at least) and use Rick's excellent West Wind Web Connection product:
Or just do straight ASP.NET development and tell your boss to use FoxPro's ability to access SQL data and bring it into a cursor where he can use FoxPro commands all he wants to manipulate the data.
For what it's worth, we've been using West Wind Web Connection for over 10 years for our ecommerce website. It works great and since all our in-house data/programming is VFP, it was the right choice back in 2000. And for everyone here who might chuckle at a VFP backend for a website, last year our website processed over 150,000 orders (sometimes 2,000+ per day) with a total value in the mid-eight figures. We are a leader (if not the leader) in our industry.
Having said that, I would highly recommend you stick with ASP.NET MVC and just do exporting or data mining processes to get the data into FoxPro for your boss' needs. We are in the process of converting to ASP.NET MVC right now.