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Classic ASP on Windows Server 2025

Classic ASP (Active Server Pages) holds a special place in the hearts of some developers. It empowered the creation of dynamic websites in the late 90s and early 2000s. While there have been concerns about its future after Microsoft announced its deprecation plan for VBScript, this blog post aims to summarize the things we learned so far and clarify that classic ASP likely remains fully supported on Windows Server 2025.

Primetime of Classic ASP

The journey begins in the mid-1990s:

  • Birth on NT 4.0 (1996): Introduced with Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack, classic ASP offered server-side scripting with a familiar language like VBScript. This made web development accessible for many Windows developers.
  • Mainstream Adoption with Windows 2000 (2000): classic ASP became a core part of Internet Information Services (IIS) on Windows 2000. Its ease of use, Windows integration, and performance for the time fueled the dot-com boom.

In The Shadow of New Technologies

The year 2002 marked a turning point with the introduction of the powerful Microsoft .NET Framework. This led to the popularity of ASP.NET, the next generation of web development technology from Microsoft.

However, classic ASP didn’t disappear. Many existing applications continued to leverage its established codebase, offering a familiar and functional platform.

Microsoft made a strategic decision with Windows Server 2003: classic ASP remained a fully supported feature. This ensured compatibility for existing applications while developers explored the possibilities of ASP.NET for new projects. Subsequent Windows Server releases (2008, 2008 R2, 2012, 2012 R2, 2016, 2019, 2022) continued this approach. Classic ASP served as a reliable option for legacy applications and those seeking a simpler scripting solution.

Holdout on Windows Server 2025

There were concerns about classic ASP support being discontinued in future Windows Server versions, especially due to the recent news of VBScript being deprecated. VBScript is a common scripting language used within classic ASP applications. This deprecation fueled anxieties about the overall future of classic ASP.

However, the latest preview build (version 24H2, OS build 26100.1 right now) for Windows Server 2025 confirms continued full support for classic ASP. This is great news for those who rely on this technology. Since Windows Server 2025 is expected to be released soon, classic ASP applications are likely to continue to run without issues for at least another decade.

Time to Consider Modernization

It’s important to acknowledge that classic ASP isn’t actively being developed with new features ever since 2002. While Windows Server 2025 support ensures its continued relevance for specific use cases, future-proofing your applications is crucial, especially in the rapidly evolving web landscape.

Here’s why migrating to modern frameworks might be beneficial:

  • Security Enhancements: Modern frameworks like ASP.NET Core prioritize security best practices, helping to mitigate vulnerabilities that might exist in older codebase written in VBScript.
  • Performance Improvements: Newer frameworks often leverage advancements in hardware and software, potentially offering better performance for your applications.
  • Access to New Features: Modern frameworks provide access to a wider range of features and functionalities that can enhance your application’s capabilities.
  • Developer Experience: Modern frameworks often offer improved developer tooling and a more streamlined development experience.

Conclusion

Classic ASP likely remains a supported feature on Windows Server 2025, ensuring that existing applications can continue to run without issues. However, it’s essential to consider modernization options to future-proof your applications and take advantage of the latest web development technologies.

© Lex Li. All rights reserved. The code included is licensed under CC BY 4.0 unless otherwise noted.
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© - Lex Li. All rights reserved.

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Last updated on June 24, 2024