Basic Setup of an RSS ASP File

Basic Setup of an RSS ASP File
When you're setting up an RSS file that has ASP processing in it, the logistics can be confusing. Here's a step by step description of what is going on.

First, you want this file to be named XXXXXXX.RSS - that is, you want it to have a RSS extension. This is because all the RSS readers out there expect a RSS file to end in RSS. Makes sense, yes? So the actual filename that has the RSS content should have an RSS extension.

Second, you need your webserver to know how to serve out a RSS file. Remember, the end user doesn't have the RSS file on THEIR machine. It is on YOUR webserver and therefore your webserver is responsible for handing it over to the end user. You need to set up a MIME type entry for a .RSS type file. You want to set it equal to text/xml. That way when the web server sends the file to the end user, the formatting of the file is correct. In IIS you'd do this under the properties of the main websites entity.

OK, so far so good. The XXXXX.RSS file will be served out by your webserver in XML format. But how about the contents? You want the contents to be dynamically processed, using standard ASP processing, right? Well, you have to tell your webserver to do that. Your webserver doesn't randomly process every single file it serves, trying to look for ASP commands :) So you have to set up the .RSS extension in the exact same way you set up the .ASP extension - with links to the DLL so that your web browser knows to process .RSS files with the ASP DLL. Otherwise your webserver would have no idea that an RSS file needed any additional processing.

In IIS, you did this under Home Directory - Applications Settings - Configuration. On my server, I set .ASP and .RSS to


obviously that could be different on your server. But really, just look at what you currently have ASP set to - assuming that is working! - and set RSS to that as well.

Now you should be set. When an end user's RSS reader requests a file, they will request a RSS file. That RSS file will be pre-processed by the ASP processing DLL, and then the results will be handed over by your web server in XML format. As long as you make the content in proper RSS format, you'll be all set!

Basics of a RSS Feed
Coding a RSS Feed
Sample RSS Feed

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