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PHP vs ASP.NET: What’s The Difference?

If you’re thinking of developing a website completely from scratch, then you’ve probably heard of PHP, or ASP.NET, or both. These are two programming languages ​​which allow us to create websites, but they have many differences!

PHP and how it works

PHP is the acronym for ‘Hypertext Pre-Processor’. It’s a high-level open source programming language, especially suitable for web development and that can be used in HTML. Pages that run on a server can perform database access, network connections, and other tasks to create the final page that the client will see.

PHP is free to use and has a number of frameworks to simplify web development. Some of the most important and well-known platforms on the Internet are written in PHP, such as WordPress, Drupal and Joomla. PHP language is used to generate dynamic web pages. While the content of static pages always remain the same, dynamic pages are not subject to the same rules. For example, the content of a website can change based on changes in a database, searches or user contributions. PHP is the engine behind this. 

ASP.NET and how it works

ASP.NET provides a unified development model that includes the elements necessary to create web applications in either Visual Basic or C #.

Originating from the recognised brand Microsoft, ASP.NET is a server-side scripting technology that can be used to create dynamic and interactive web applications. ASP.NET web pages are HTML pages that contain server scripts which are processed by a web server before being sent to the user’s browser.

ASP.NET can be combined with XML and HTML to create powerful, interactive websites. Since the server script generates a standard HTML page, it’s possible to render it to almost any browser.

Comparison PHP vs ASP.NET

One factor that every client is interested in when choosing technology, is the cost. In this case PHP is completely free, while ASP.NET is a Microsoft product. This means that there are certain costs with implementing ASP.NET.


To develop in ASP.NET, it’s necessary to have a PC with the Microsoft Windows operating system. This is not a requirement with PHP, since this language can be developed in any operating system, be it Windows, Linux or Mac.


Most applications written in PHP are run on servers with a Linux operating system, an Apache server, and a MySQL database. This technology package is referred to as LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP).

In the case of ASP.NET, the operating system used is Windows where it usually connects to the MSSQL database (Microsoft SQL Server).

A factor relating to the performance of an application is the operating system where it runs. A large body of evidence indicates that Linux and its EXT4 file system have better performance and speed than the Windows NTFS system. So a PHP application, hosted on a Linux server, is more likely to perform better than a similar application developed in ASP. NET, which is hosted on a Windows server.


PHP is open source, and has a community of developers in charge of keeping it as secure as possible. These developers are in charge of updating the PHP versions and uploading them to the repositories within hours. In the case of Microsoft, as we all know, they take their time to publish security patches on software, and we are not talking about days, sometimes weeks or even months. In this case, ASP has the upper hand compared to PHP once again.

At a general level of security for each of the ASP.NET or PHP servers, both have very good security architecture to prevent and reduce the chances of certain types of attacks.

Language Syntax

PHP uses a development syntax in its language, similar to Java, Javascript or C, which are very popular cross-platform languages. In other words, if you have already learned Java or C before, PHP will not be difficult for you. When developing a website in ASP.NET, you need to do it on a specific Microsoft platform called Visual Studio, while in PHP it can be done in any text editor such as Sublime Text, Atom, or even in notepad.


PHP allows greater portability than ASP.NET, since being a multi-platform language, it can be run on Linux, Windows or any derivative of BSD (like Mac even). While ASP.NET is always ‘stuck’ in the Microsoft platform due to compatibility problems in the rest of the operating systems. In this aspect, PHP again has an advantage.

Time of development

It takes a greater amount of code to accomplish complex things with ASP.NET compared to PHP, which adds more time to the overall development process. PHP also has the advantage that it is interpreted directly from the server itself, so when you need to add new functionalities or processes to your code, you only need to save the file and refresh your browser.

ASP.NET on the other hand needs to compile the code every time your code is modified. In short, developing in ASP.net takes you longer than in PHP.

Support and Help

In this aspect of the PHP vs ASP.NET comparison, PHP also has the upper hand. Since being free, there is a huge community of open source developers who contribute their knowledge and help with the development of PHP, making this language have an easier learning curve for those who are just starting out.

On the other hand, ASP.NET, being owned by Microsoft, does not have such an extensive community, nor does it have a large number of help forums as with PHP. Although there are forums for enthusiastic ASP.NET developers, the reality is that there is not as much atmosphere of community and disinterested collaboration as in the PHP forums.


Today we’ve talked about PHP vs ASP.NET, commenting and comparing some of the most important factors when choosing which of them is best for you. PHP has many more advantages and that’s why it is more commonly used. Many large corporations or government organisations use ASP.NET for the simple reason that they have trade agreements with Microsoft, not because it’s actually a better language.

We simple can’t say that PHP is better than ASP.NET. It is clearly ahead and many software engineering companies consider ASP.NET somewhat “outdated.”

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