Currently at work, I'm designing a web site for the nice people at Sprint.  This site has the basics (web user controls, web forms, db connections, etc.) of an ASP.NET application.  More importantly, it needs to maintain a certain look and feel...we shall call this a 'page template'.

The 'old way' of adding a new ASP.NET Web Form to the application had the following steps:

  1. Add a new ASP.NET Web Form
  2. After the page is added, change the base class to be a custom page rather than System.Web.UI.Page
  3. Change the HTML to reflect the standard page layout and drop in all the Web UserControls the page uses.

After doing this three times, I knew there was a better way to get the same accomplished with ONE LINE OF CODE (just kidding, we know that's not true now a days).  I asked Google, “Google, my dear friend.  Could you point me to the right answer?'.  Google replied, “Yes Javier, I can!  Here, read the article entitled, Building a Custom Web Form Wizard in Visual Studio .NET.”

Let me tell you, after reading the article and spending 10 minutes to implement the example (for both Web Forms and Web User Controls), I became a better man! (Well, not really.  I just happy cause I could kill three steps in a process that should only take one)

I suggest you take the time to read this article and other related ones if you are experiencing the same issues as I am.  Also, I've added another TODO to my list, TODO: Automate the auto-mation of VS.NET.  More to come on this!