Review: TEdit

TEdit.NET 3.0.1649
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

TEdit.NET is an ASP.NET control for displaying and editing database tables. I downloaded their trial version and kicked the tires for a while, and I'm impressed with what I saw. For ease of use, this one's a winner; in many cases, you can get the basics of a data-backed application without writing any code at all.

For example, suppose you'd like to display a table in tabular format, with editing in a simple set of textboxes and other controls. You'd also like Add and Delete ability, paging, and the ability to download a text file with the contents of the table. Throw in searching/filtering. OK, so far that's all done with no code writing at all:

  1. Drop the TableEditor control on a form
  2. Add a connection string to the Web.Config file
  3. Write a simple XML configuration file that specifies the table to show
  4. Set a single property of the control

That's it! The end result works well (I tested on tables with a few tens of thousands of records) and can be formatted by CSS (they supply a sample CSS file so you can get the styles right). You can do an awful lot of customization just by editing the config file: rename columns, use lookup tables to fill columns (shown as combo boxes in edit mode), disable adds, edits, or deletes, and so on. You can also set up master/detail relationships between a pair of TableEditor controls just by setting appropriate properties.

Beyond that, there is what looks like a thorough set of events and properties to allow you to manipulate the control in code. So although it's easy to get started, you can also dive into more advanced tasks such as creating a date picker control to handle data input on date fields. The help file is in the standard MSDN format and well-written.

DVXP provides some samples on their Web site, so you can give the control a workout online. You can also download a 30-day trial version and test it out on your own box, along with a reasonably complex bug-tracking application that will give you a good idea of the control's capabilities. If you're doing a lot of line of business work that requires just slapping a Web interface on database tables, this control will make short work of most of your tasks.


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