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ASP.Net RSS Toolkit gives ASP.Net applications the ability to consume and publish to RSS feeds.

Features include:

  • RssDataSource control to consume feeds in ASP.NET applications
    • Works with ASP.NET data bound controls
    • Implements schema to generate columns at design time
    • Supports auto-generation of columns at runtime (via ICustomTypeDescriptor implementation)
  • Caching of downloaded feeds both in-memory and on-disk (persisted across process restarts)
  • Generation of strongly typed classes for feeds (including strongly typed channel, items, image, handler) based on a feed URL (the toolkit recognizes RSS, Atom and RDF feeds) or a file containing a sample feed. Allows programmatically download (and creation) of feeds using strongly-typed classes.

The toolkit includes:

  • Consuming feeds, using:
    • Stand-alone command line feed compiler that generates VB.Net or C# code files.
    • Build provider for .rssdl file (containing the list of feed URI(s) [including local files])
    • Build provider for .rss file (containing feed XML in RSS/Atom/RDF or OPML format)
  • Support for generation of feeds in ASP.NET application including:
    • RSS HTTP handler (strongly typed HTTP handlers are generated automatically by the build providers) to generate the feed.
    • RSS Hyper Link control (that can point to RSS HTTP handler) to create RSS links
    • Optional secure encoding of user name into query string to allow generation of personalized feeds
  • Set of classes for programmatic consumption and generation of RSS feed in a late-bound way, without using strongly types generated classes



The toolkit is packaged as an assembly (DLL) that can be either placed in GAC or in ‘bin’ directory of a web site application. It is also usable from client (including WinForms) applications.
RSS Toolkit works in Medium Trust (RssToolkit.dll Assembly either in GAC or in ‘bin’) with the following caveats:
  • If the ASP.NET application consumes RSS feeds, the trust level must be configured to allow outbound HTTP requests.
  • To take advantage of disk caching, there must be a directory (configurable via AppSettings["rssTempDir"]) where the trust level policy would allow write access. However, disk caching is optional.


  • 6/15/2007 New Release (version
    • Huge revamp of the project by Piyush Shah to support strong-type feed generation. Added support for Atom, RDF. Added OPML aggregation, and schema validation of OMPL sub-feeds. Added ability to serve out feeds as RSS, Atom, RDF or OPML. Now supports qualified namespaces and enclosures. Download manager now can cache to application relative paths (like the App_Data directory of a web site) to aid in medium trust deployments. Added unit tests via Visual Studio Team Foundation test framework.
  • 3/26/2006 Update (version
    • Added MaxItems property to RssDataSource to limit the number of items returned.
    • Added automatic generation of <link> tags from RssHyperLink control, to light up the RSS toolbar icon in IE7. For more information please see
    • Added protected Context property (of type HttpContext) to RssHttpHandlerBase class, to allow access to the HTTP request while generating a feed.
    • Added generation of LoadChannel(string url) method in RssCodeGenerator so that one strongly typed channel class can be used to consume different channels.
    • Fixed problem expanding app relative (~/…) links containing query string when generating RSS feeds.


The ASP.NET RSS Toolkit was conceived and created by Dmitry Robsman and posted here by permission. Original blog postings:

Last edited Jun 16, 2007 at 4:29 AM by IDisposable, version 14