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What IIS actually is, tools to use and reference sites

In this searchWebManagement expert response, Microsoft IIS expert Henry Thomas explains some IIS basics.

1) What is IIS?

Microsoft Internet Information Server (commonly known as IIS), is a Web Server. Its primary function is to serve up HTML pages, requested by a browser, transported over an HTTP connection. The IIS also supports the Active Server Pages, a scripting environment from Microsoft, which can be used to create HTML pages dynamically, based on user inputs and outputs from server side applications. IIS also supports ISAPI a low level programming interface, which can be used to extend the capabilities of IIS. Examples of other Web servers are Apache, IBM HTTP Server, etc.

2) Can you suggest a site to refer to for developing a Web portal, from the basics to advanced?

Active server pages are the primary environment on the IIS platform to create any type of interactive Web application. Some reference sites, which would provide more insights into the IIS Web server are as follows:

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Some references for Active Server Pages:

3) What are some tools that have been used in developing Web portals besides IIS?

IIS being just the Web server can apply to a variety of Web application scenarios. Some other tools that may be used in conjunction with IIS to develop portals are:

From Microsoft:

  1. Share Point Portal Server 2001 for intranet and departmental portals
  2. Site Server 3.0 for much more complex Portal Development
  3. Visual studio and FrontPage to develop the Web Front End and Business Logic.
  4. More recently released, Content Management Server 2001 for Content Management
  5. Digital Dashboard Tool Kits for more Executive dashboard like Portals

Some of these tools may be used independently or in conjunction with others based on the desired functionality.

Some non-Microsoft based third party products for building corporate portals are:

  1. PlumTree Corporate Portal
  2. Net.Portal for IIS


This was first published in December 2001

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