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So far I've written web sites in PHP, except for a pet project of mine written in Python.

I'd like to start learning C# for use on the web, but I have no idea where to start. I know nothing of .Net. Are there any good tutorials or online books etc. which give a brief intro to the .Net environment (specifically C#, and specifically for the web)?

I'm not even sure what I need to install. Visual Studio I guess, but what else? Anything special, or will VS do the trick?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 15 down vote accepted

There are two approaches to building ASP.net web applications: WebForms and MVC. If you are allowed any discretion at all in which to choose, let me say that you should stay the expletive away from WebForms at all cost.

Learn the MVC stuff, it's faster, more flexible, and not bogged down by ViewState and naming problems. Go here: Microsoft's MVC Site

As for C# itself, the language and framework can get pretty deep. I'd look at these C# Examples and Tutorials from the mothership to get going.

And finally, since it is unlikely that you'll need to do something that hasn't been done before (most of us are in this boat), The Microsoft All-In-One Code Framework is a truly awesome resource that has code samples that cover virtually anything you need to do in .Net. It's an underutilized resource, IMO and a treasure trove of time-savings.

Good luck!

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nice link, thanks! –  Carson Myers Dec 15 '10 at 19:00
+1 Definitely go MVC if you can. –  meddlingwithfire Nov 29 '12 at 23:02
Upvoted just for "stay the expletive away from WebForms"... –  anaximander May 23 '13 at 15:55

I came from a PHP background and into a new job - which was ALL .net.

I basically just dived in, head first. I assume you've got visual studio installed? If not go and get it.

Create a new project then go Add -> New Item -> WebForm.

Viola! You've got something that looks like HTML. Edit as you wish and hit F5 to see the changes. From there you can use the web to work out how to place buttons, text boxes and you're on your way...

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Awesome seems quick. Since I asked this question I've explored the new project dialog a bit... There's a "web" submenu under C#, and everything is ASP.NET... is this what I want? Or is an empty C# project fine? –  Carson Myers Dec 15 '10 at 11:37
Yea you'll want an ASP.NET Web Project –  billy.bob Dec 15 '10 at 12:18
You may actually want ASP.NET MVC these days. Visual Studio 2010 includes it, VS 2008 has a separate download. –  user8685 Dec 15 '10 at 16:37
Do not go down the WebForms rabbit hole. Use MVC instead. –  KevDog Dec 15 '10 at 16:47
Agreed, just start on MVC, WebForms will cause you more pain and is a convoluted view of the way the web works. –  ChrisAnnODell Dec 15 '10 at 20:12

If you want to learn building Web Applications in C#, the best way would be screencasts. www.asp.net does have a few of them, but for quality understanding, i like www.tekpub.com.

There are good number of screencasts for asp.net4, asp.net mvc2 which are the two ways of developing web appliations in .net. If you can try asp.net mvc2 because it gives more structure to the development process as well as certain amount of testability using TDD techniques.

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TekPub doesn't have much c# specific content. But they say more is coming. –  Copas Jan 25 '11 at 16:16

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