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Last updated Jan 1, 2004.
ASP stands for Active Server Pages, and it runs inside IIS (Internet Information Services), making it a natural in working with the server and the Windows operating system. While IIS and PWS (Personal Web Server for Win95/98) come with an accompanying Microsoft operating system for free, Microsoft often charges licensing fees, upgrades, and support.
Apache/UNIX is harder to break from a security point of view in comparison to IIS/Windows where ASP is often run. Also, Windows is not exactly known for its stability. Often, when developing for and with Microsoft software, you're stuck using their products because they run on only MS platforms.
Like PHP, ASP can be embedded within an HTML file. The extension for ASP files is .asp. An example of ASP using Hello, World!
<% Response.Write("Hello World!") %>
The fact ASP is from Microsoft is an advantage and a disadvantage. The community isn't as active as Apache/PHP community. Programmers who know Visual Basic or VBScript (a subset of Visual Basic) should have no trouble migrating to ASP since it comes with VBScript and Jscript scripting languages. Perl, REXX, and Python can be installed.