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Learning Windows Server 2003 by Jonathan Hassell

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XML-Based Configuration

You configure applications in .NET primarily through XML files. This is replacing previous, more cryptic stores such as the Windows registry or a database. If you are involved with .NET and are not yet familiar with XML, I recommend you purchase a good book to study it. All settings within the .NET Framework can be managed through XML configuration files, and the IIS metabase is moving in the same direction, too. I recommend Microsoft ASP.NET Setup and Configuration Pocket Reference (Microsoft Press). This work provides outstanding detail into the management of ASP.NET applications. It is a reference guide that covers ASP.NET along with a good amount of general .NET information.

Configuration Types

The .NET Framework defines two types of XML configuration files: Security Policy and Settings.

Security Policy

Security Policy files define the code access security policy, which specifies what type of actions code is allowed to perform. I will cover code access security in detail later in this chapter.

These files are far too big and ugly to display here. I strongly recommend using the .NET Configuration MMC, pictured in Figure 9-1, to administer these files.

.NET Configuration MMC

Figure 9-1. .NET Configuration MMC

Settings

Settings files are probably the most exciting breakthrough in .NET from a management perspective. These files have consolidated all application settings into a single ...

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