The ListView control is useful for displaying data in any repeating structure, similar to the DataList and Repeater controls. Unlike those controls, the ListView control supports edit, insert, and delete operations as well as sorting and paging. The paging functionality is provided for ListView by the new DataPager control.
The ListView control is a highly customizable control that enables you to use templates and styles to define the control's UI. Like the Repeater, DataList, and FormView controls, templates in the ListView control are not predefined to render specific UI in the browser.
You can bind the ListView control to data in these ways:
By using the DataSourceID property. This enables you to bind the ListView control to a data source control, such as the SqlDataSource control. We recommend this approach because it enables the ListView control to take advantage of the capabilities of the data source control. It also provides built-in functionality for sorting, paging, inserting, deleting, and updating. This approach also enables you to use two-way binding expressions. For more information about data source controls, see ASP.NET data controls.
By using the DataSource property. This enables you to bind to various objects, which includes ADO.NET datasets and data readers and in-memory structures such as collections. This approach requires that you write code for any additional functionality such as sorting, paging, and updating.
Items that are displayed by a ListView control are defined by templates, similarly to the DataList and Repeater controls. The ListView control lets you display data as individual items or in groups.
You define the main (root) layout of a ListView control by creating a LayoutTemplate template. The LayoutTemplate must include a control that acts as a placeholder for the data. For example, the layout template might include an ASP.NET Table, Panel, or Label control. (It might also include HTML table, div, or span elements that have a runat attribute that is set to "server".) These controls will contain the output for each item as defined by the ItemTemplate template, which can be grouped in the content that is defined by the GroupTemplate template.
You define content for individual items in the ItemTemplate template. This template typically contains controls that are data-bound to data columns or other individual data elements.
You can optionally group items in a ListView control by using the GroupTemplate template. You typically group items to create a tiled table layout. In a tiled table layout, the items are repeated in a row the number of times specified in the GroupItemCount property. In order to create a tiled table layout, the layout template might contain an ASP.NET Table control or an HTML table element that has a runat attribute set to "server". The group template can then contain an ASP.NET TableRow control (or an HTML tr element). The item template can contain individual controls that are inside an ASP.NET TableCell control (or an HTML td element).
You can use the EditItemTemplate template to supply data-bound UI that enables users to modify existing data items. You can use the InsertItemTemplate template to define data-bound UI that enables users to add a new data item. For more information, see Modifying Data later in this topic.
To enable users to page through data in a ListView control, you can use a DataPager control. The DataPager control can be inside the LayoutTemplate template or on the page outside the ListView control. If the DataPager control is not in the ListView control, you must set the PagedControlID property to the ID of the ListView control. For more information, see DataPager control.
You can create templates for the ListView control that enable users to edit, insert, or delete a single data item.
To enable users to edit a data item, you can add an EditItemTemplate template to the ListView control. When an item is switched to edit mode, the ListView control displays the item by using the edit template. The template should include data-bound controls where the user can edit values. For example, the template can include text boxes where users can edit existing values.
To enable users to insert a new item, you can add an InsertItemTemplate template to the ListView control. As with the edit template, the insert template should include data-bound controls that enable data entry. The InsertItemTemplate template is rendered either at the start or at the end of the displayed items. You specify where the InsertItemTemplate template is rendered by using the InsertItemPosition property of the ListView control.
You typically add buttons to templates to enable users to specify what action they want to take. For example, you can add a Delete button to an item template to enable users to delete that item.
You can add an Edit button to an item template to enable the user to switch to edit mode. In the EditItemTemplate you can include an Update button that enables users to save changes. You can also include a Cancel button that enables users to switch back to display mode without saving changes.
The ListView control does not support style properties such as BackColor and Font. In order to apply styles to the ListView control, you must use cascading style sheets (CSS) classes or inline style elements for individual controls inside the ListView templates.
Some objects support properties that enable you to style elements of the output. For example, the NumericPagerField object includes the following properties:
A NumericButtonCssClass property that enables you to specify the CSS class name for the buttons that move to pages of data by number.
A CurrentPageLabelCssClass property that enables you to specify the CSS class name for the current page number.
A NextPreviousButtonCssClass property that enables you to specify the CSS class name for the buttons that move to the next or previous group of numeric buttons.
For more information about using the ListView control, see ListView Web Server Control Overview in the MSDN library.