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A Simple RSS News Generating Tool

, 28 Apr 2005 CPOL
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A tool to generate/manage news and provide news via RSS.

Sample Image - ShowNews.jpg

Introduction

This article presents to you a small web based tool, to edit and manage news information (for your colleagues). It uses RSS to provide news, so you can use RSS-Readers to collect news. Some simple web front-ends are included for IUD, configuration and to show news.

Background

The Code Project article, "8 tips to make you more efficient as an ASP.NET developer" from Paul Heap has inspired me, to write this little tool. This tool helps to provide some development news to each developer in our company.

The RSSNewsFlash-Project supports some news categories too (configured in database, see below). In this connection, I would like to mention that I assume a database from MS SQL Server. The access to the database is using ODBC with SQL Server Authorization and the script to create the tables may include some SQL Server specific syntax or data types. To modify, read the information in the table below.

My solution should be small and nice. Therefore, I haven't implemented a very colorized and professional user interface and big database design. It's only a working beginning.

Install

  • Unzip the package to Inetpub\wwwroot.
  • Add a new virtual directory in IIS called RSSNewsFlash pointed to the install dir.
  • Add a new standard document in settings of the virtual directory: AddNews.aspx.
  • Execute the script in CreateScript.sql included in the package on an SQL Server database.
  • Create an ODBC entry to the SQL Server database (Important: SQL Server Authorization !!!).
  • Modify some settings in web.config appsettings-section.
    • Key DSN: The DSN of the created ODBC entry.
    • Key PhysicalUser: User for database login.
    • Key PhysicalPassword: Password for database login.
    • Key URL: URL of created virtual directory on ISS.
    • All other keys which configure some information in the RSS-Stream.
  • Now you are ready to use and open AddNews.aspx.
  • Via link "Download RSS News Reader" at the bottom left of the page, you can install a freeware RSS-Reader.
  • To configure the Reader to use your own RSSNewsFlash, click the link "Setup the RSS News Reader" at the bottom of the page.
  • If you want to use another RSS tool, you need only the link present in the page "Setup the RSS News Reader".

Hints

Here comes some hints to expand the feature list or modify the project for your own requirements.

  • If you want to use another database server, you must modify the creation script and source code. Problem areas can be the Identity and Text attributes.
  • If you need an access to the database in a different way (not ODBC with SQL Server Authorization), you should modify the code for database connection in AddNews.aspx.vb, ShowNews.aspx.vb and RSS.aspx.vb.
  • For using the categories as Filter in the RSS-Reader, you should modify the source in RSS.aspx.vb. Here you can insert a URL parameter (i.e. "cat") to prepare the select statement. You add this parameter in the URL calling from the RSS-Reader.

The tables and the pages

Table/Page Descripton
Table rss_newsflash Stores all news.
Table rss_newsflash_authors Stores all possible authors.
Table rss_newsflash_categories Stores all possible categories.
Table rss_newsflash_response Stored information, which client has asked for the latest news and timestamp.
Page AddNews.aspx Adds and modifies a news. Optional URL parameter "newsid" is pointed to "rss_newsflash.temp_refid" and determines if there is a news to create or modify.
Page ConfigRSS.aspx Shows a help page to configure the Freeware RSS Reader.
Page ShowNews.aspx Presents a news. Called from RSS-Reader. URL parameter "newsid" is pointed to "rss_newsflash.temp_refid"
Page RSS.aspx Generate the RSS-Stream. Normally only called from RSS-Reader.

Screenshots

This is the help page to configure the freeware RSS-Reader. The page is dynamically generated to show the correct URL.

The Config-Help Page

The page where you enter a new news and/or modify/delete. This page can be accessed directly via http://yourhost/RSSNewsFlash/AddNews.aspx.

The Page for IUD news

An overview in the RSS-Reader.

Preview in the RSS-Reader

News are present in a simple web page with Link buttons to modify or add news and navigate previous/next.

The News-Presenting Page

History

Initial version.

License

This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

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About the Author

Stephan Pilz
Web Developer
Germany Germany
I started 1987 when I was about 14 years old, with Basic and Pascal on 8Bit Atari with insanely 130KB of memory, later 16Bit Atari (4Megs). In study I learn C, C++, Modula-2, Assembler and other science languages (Prolog, ADA). I hold a german engineer's degree Dipl.-Ing. (FH) in "Technical Computer Science" from the University of Applied Sciences Mittweida, Germany (comparable with a Master Degree).
 
Now I develop PPS and Supply-Chain-Software for middle and great companies in Chemnitz/Germany with Web- and MFC-Frontends in C, C++, ASP.NET, ADO.NET, XML, HTML, JavaScript.
 
My main tasks are specify and write down solutions of problems and implement the first code snippets.
 
In my spare time I like to drive a (fast) motocycle, read many science fiction and fantasy books and I'm a enthusiastically shotokan karate fighter. In winter I falling down from hill with alpin ski on foots, because snowboards are only for drug sniffers Wink | ;-)

Comments and Discussions

 
GeneralMy vote of 1 PinmemberDebopam Pal16-Nov-13 22:19 
GeneralDid Not Run in Thunderbird Pinmemberjabailo16-Jun-06 5:31 
GeneralRe: Did Not Run in Thunderbird PinmemberStephan Pilz25-Jul-06 0:15 
GeneralLooks Very Good ! PinmemberTrance Junkie20-Dec-05 2:40 
Generalgood application Pinmemberpaul heap30-Apr-05 20:59 

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