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Provider Toolkit

The provider model is used throughout ASP.NET 2.0. It is a means of writing each of the technologies used so that new versions can easily be created and plugged in. For example, if you need to access a different database or authentication server, you can create a provider for it. ASP.NET 2.0 will then work with that provider just as it works with the existing features. This makes ASP.NET 2.0 much more flexible, expandable, and customizable than before.

About the Provider Model

The Provider Design Pattern
Make your ASP.NET applications more flexible by using the new "Whidbey" provider design pattern.
Use the Provider Design Pattern in Your ASP.NET 1.1 Apps Today
Implement the Provider Design Pattern in your ASP.NET 1.1 applications today, and dynamically replace or extend the behavior of published APIs without needing source access to the API itself.

Extending the Providers

Understanding and Extending the Site Navigation System in ASP.NET 2.0
The ASP.NET 2.0 site navigation system is built on a powerful and flexible architecture that has been designed to be extensible. This article examines the site provider architecture, and includes a sample provider that exposes the file system as a data source for site navigation, as an alternative to the standard Web.sitemap XML file.
Custom Site Map Providers in ASP.NET 2.0
Presents an overview of the provider model in Microsoft ASP.NET 2.0, and presents a custom implementation of the SiteMapProvider, which is used by controls such as the Breadcrumb and Treeview when rendering a page.


Sample Access Providers

The Sample Access Providers Starter Kit is a C# class library project containing implementations of ASP.NET 2.0 providers for the following features: Membership, Role Manger, Profile, and Web Parts Personalization. All of the providers use Microsoft Access for database storage. The starter kit also includes an empty Microsoft Access database containing the database schema used by the providers, as well as a sample web.config showing how the providers can be configured for use in an ASP.NET 2.0 application.

Note: You will need Visual C# Express to compile this starter kit before using it with Visual Web Developer Express.

Code Template for Building a Provider-Based Feature

The provider model in the .NET 2.0 Framework is not just for use by various features like Membership and Role Manager. The core classes that are used to build provider-based features are all public and can be used in your own projects to add a pluggable and extensible provider layer. This download contains five sample files that you can use in a C# project to start building a provider-based feature. The readme included in the .zip file explains how to add the files to a C# assembly project and then edit the code to create a starting point for building out your own provider-based feature.

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