Determining Where to Build a Custom Application
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You may want to create custom .aspx pages and Web applications and store them in a location that is accessible from all Web sites in your Windows SharePoint Services deployment. You may also want to create Web applications that contain custom code that works with the global settings for your deployment.
You can build and store custom .aspx pages and Web applications in the following directory, which supports the _layouts virtual directory:
Local_Drive:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\LAYOUTS
Pages in this directory are accessible from all Web sites in the Windows SharePoint Services deployment through a URL in the following form:
For code that involves use of only the Microsoft.SharePoint.Administration namespace for working with global settings in a Windows SharePoint Services deployment, it is recommended that you create the Web application on the administrative port. Build and store .aspx pages and Web applications for the administrative port in the following directory:
Local_Drive:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\12\TEMPLATE\ADMIN
Pages in the \ADMIN directory are accessible through a URL in the following form:
For information about how to create a Web application in Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 that runs in the context of Windows SharePoint Services, see Getting Started with Programmatically Customizing a SharePoint Web Site in Visual Studio.
Console applications can be created anywhere on the front-end Web server. For information about how to create a console application that runs in the context of Windows SharePoint Services, see How to: Create a Console Application.