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NetProbe 1.0 beta
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NetProbe 1.0 beta

Make the network and the custom protocols transparent for you! 

Fetch resources through HTTP, FTP, RES, MK, ABOUT, ALP and all the other protocols you may have, Send data/files through them, post forms autmoatically, exchange data between servers, build applications with ultimate network connectivity - that is the idea.

NetProbe is a protocol independent ActiveX intended for sending and retrieving information through any protocol registered on the local system. It was tested with standard protocols like http, ftp, file and with custom protocols like res, mk (MS HTML Help protocol), alp (Active Local Pages) and others. So NetProbe is not just a tool for internet, but also universal tool able to fetch/send information through any available protocol no matter if it is a network oriented protocol (such as http) or a local processor (such as alp and mk).

Example tasks that can be done with NetProbe:

Fetching information from a CHM (HTML help file) file and embedding it into the pages generated on the WEB server (with a few lines of ASP code)
Sending requests POST, GET, PUT to remote servers and working with the returned data
Using external protocol engines as content servers in applications running on the desktop or on the WEB server. For example an application (or even ASP page running in IIS) may request ASP page to be executed by the ALP engine and do something with the result.
Fetching information from the internet. The NetProbe runs the same way as Internet Explorer and is able to fetch everything IE is able to download.
Synchronization/data exchange between machines/servers. For example an ASP page can download news from other servers (in any format) and select something to show.

NetProbe supports features required sometimes by the protocols - such as authentication, request/response headers manipulation. The requested information can be accessed as string or binary data as appropriate. Using additional controls (such as Storages and Files from the ActiveX Pack1 or a XML parser) NetProbe is able to provide all the required services for network or network-like communication and real-time data exchange. The data can be posted/sent through NetProbe in user-defined formats - for example if the application wants to post a form or upload files.

NetProbe comes in two forms - both and freethreaded. The applications are able to create and manage pools of NetProbe objects and are provided with certain synchronization services (for the freethreaded case mostly). For example an ASP application can create several NetProbe objects and keep them in Application variables. Then the ASP pages are allowed to wait/occupy a NetProbe object and use it. These features allow the application to optimize its network functions depending on the expected transfer and requests count. 

The applications that use NetProbe can set Timeout which means in this case "time limit" for the requested operations. This allows the server applications to control the time spent for the network operations and response to their clients in time. The actual timeout value depends on the system settings of the protocol used and may differ.

And one simple demo - more can be found in the documentation and the samples in the archive. 

Let us fetch a resource first. We need to create and configure the object and send a request.

Set np = Server.CreateObject("newObjects.utilctls.NetProbe")
If np.Request("http://server/resource") Then
  If np.ResponseMIME = "text/plain" Then
    ' Do something with it - for example display it
    Response.Write np.ResponseText
    ' Not the content type we have expected. 
  End If
  ' Fatal error
End If

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