A Common Look and Feel

This tutorial covers one of ASP.NET 2.0's most useful features as far as developing an identity for your site: Master Pages. A distinguishing characteristic of most well-designed modern Web sites is the consistent look and feel of each page within the site.

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to

  • Use Master Pages to develop a common look and feel for your entire site
  • Use Themes to apply a style to a page en masse
  • Use Skins to stylize custom controls

For example, many sites incorporate a specific color scheme and fonts. In addition, the way a well-designed site frames information and provides navigation tools is consistent from one page to another. Can you imagine visiting a site where each page appeared radically different from the previous page? At the very least you'd probably be confused. At the very worst, you might even be repulsed.

ASP.NET 2.0 introduces a new feature named Master Pages to help you make your site appear consistent as visitors move around it. In addition, ASP.NET 2.0 features a way to stylize controls. Let's take a look at how they work.