Designing A Music Store Web Application Computer Science Essay

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The objective of this project is to design a Music store web application with user interface which will enable them to browse, search, get song recommendations and buy the song items of their choice. The motivation of this project comes from my desire to learn the increasingly growing field of .NET, SQL server database designing, website designing and their growing popularity.

The word "design" in the context of a Web Application can mean many things. Its most popular usage probably refers to the visual and user interface (UI) design of a web site. This aspect is crucial because, the visitor is often more impressed with how a website looks and how easy it is to use than about which technologies and techniques are used behind the scenes, or what operating system the web server is running. If the site is hard to use and easy to forget, it just doesn't matter what technologies was used to create it. The visual part of a site gets visitors interested to begin with, but its functionality makes them come back.

A web site can sometimes be implemented very quickly based on certain initial requirements, but if not properly architected, it can become difficult, if not impossible, to change. Thus, performance is also a major thrust area in the Web application which is one of the main reasons why users get attracted to it. Growing user needs should be taken in to concern with new features to be included. Effective performance can be achieved by making proper database design strategy. Also, easy navigation also needs to be accomplished while executing this project.


The goal of this project is to provide an automated .NET Web application that allows a user to browse and buy a music CD over the Internet at any time.

Project Overview

The system will interact as follows:

a. The client sends request and .NET form inputs over the network.

b. The Internet Information Server (IIS) receives .Net form inputs.

c. IIS Web server

i. Processes inputs

ii. If required, queries to the database and retrieves data

d. The IIS Web server sends back processed output over the network as a Web page.

e. The client receives the output as a Web page.

Flow Diagram


1. Construct a system with three-tier architecture.

2. Microsoft Visual Studio 2005, ASP.NET, C# language, Microsoft SQL Server 2005 and XML will be used to develop the system.

3. The final product will be run on Internet Information Server (IIS).

4. Mozilla Firefox will be used as a main browser.


The Web application is developed under the .NET Framework therefore the system can only be deployed on the IIS server.

Microsoft SQL server 2005 is used to allow maximum user connection.


The Online Music CD Store Website will be written in C# language.

The development environment will be Microsoft Visual Studio 2005.

The Online Music CD Store Website will be tested on Windows XP platform

Other Requirements

All user interfaces are ASP.NET-generated Web pages. In order to access the

System, the user will need to use a workstation with Internet accessibility equipped with a web browser. It is also a must that the Microsoft .NET Framework is installed on the same machine. A broadband connection is recommended to boost the performance. A Web page will be displayed according to the user's choice. The online customer can browse/search through the catalog and buy the music CDs/DVDs of his choice.

Use case Requirements Diagram


Project Developer: Is responsible for creating clear and project objectives, building the project requirements, and managing the triple constraint for projects, which are cost, time, and quality.

Project manager: is accountable for accomplishing the project objectives. Create clear and attainable project objectives, building the project requirements, and managing the triple constraint for projects, which is cost, time, and scope.

Tools, Techniques, and Methodologies

The following tools will be used for coding, testing, and documentation:

• Microsoft Visual Studio .NET 2005 IDE - for coding

• C# - for coding

• JavaScript - for coding

• HTML - for coding

• XML - for coding

• CSS - for coding

• IIS - for web server

• ASP.NET - for web forms

• MS SQL - for database server

• MS Word 2007 - for documentation

• MS Project 2007 - Project Planning

ASP.NET is a web application framework developed and marketed by Microsoft allowing programmers to build dynamic web sites, web applications and web services. ASP.NET is built on the Common Language Runtime (CLR), allowing programmers to write ASP.NET code using any supported .NET language. The ASP.NET SOAP extension framework allows ASP.NET components to process SOAP messages.

SQL Server is a relational model database server produced by Microsoft. Its primary query languages are T-SQL and ANSI SQL. It includes native support for managing XML data, in addition to relational data. It define an xml data type that could be used either as a data type in database columns or as literals in queries. XML is converted to an internal binary data type before being stored in the database. SQL Server also allows a database server to be exposed over web services using TDS packets encapsulated within SOAP requests. When the data is accessed over web services, results are returned as XML.

Project Life cycle

Inception Phase

Vision Document

Project Plan

Software Quality Assurance Plan


Design Phase

Project Plan

Requirements Specification

Architecture Design

Test Plan

Technical Inspection

Executable Architecture Prototype

Production phase

User Manual

Component Design

Source Code

Assessment Evaluation

Project Evaluation

Gantt Chart

Architecture of the system

The architecture of the system is based on three-tier architecture. There are three logical tiers: the Presentation Tier, the Business Tier, and the Data Tier. The presentation tier is responsible for displaying the contents to the user while business tier communicates between presentation tier and data tier. It is the main component of the website since it is responsible for handling the overall logic. The data tier is responsible for storing the product information, transactions of the customer and shopping cart products. The data tier is also responsible handling the requests from the business tier and using stored procedures passing the result back.


1) Response Time increases linearly with number of users for both Wireless and LAN

2) Max no. of users handled by the system before it becomes saturated = 1000

3) Practical no. of users that the application can handle is up to 200. The response time is about 7 sec, practically users will be reluctant to use the website with such response time.

4) Response Time is less for LAN due to better bandwidth.

Factors affecting Response Time

1) Extensive Data access - numerous read requests handled and images retrieval

2) Varying Network Bandwidth

3) Limited System Hardware Resources (CPU, RAM, Disks) and


4) Server running on the same machine


The Online Music Store System is running on a personal version of IIS. A better scalability can be achieved by upgrading a personal version of IIS to a server version of IIS. The system database server and the IIS server are running on the same machine. An increased performance and scalability can be achieved by using a dedicated database and a web server.

Project Evaluation

Technology: One of the first and basic problems was identifying which technology to use for developing the project. There were two options to choose from: J2EE or

Microsoft .NET. Both tools had their advantages and disadvantages. I chose the

latter option because of its ease of use plus it had lesser configurations to perform as

compared to J2EE.

Language: It took quite some time for me to get used with the programming languages. Although, C# was very much similar to Java and ASP.NET with Visual Basic, still I found myself encountering some challenges in terms of finding a good book that covers in-depth examples. My basic knowledge of connecting with databases to send the information was not enough. Mainly dealing with the datasets and adapters concept in C#.NET was a major learning curve.

Security Issues: With my computer setting i have encountered some issues with the security policy. Some functionalities of the application, that used to work, were no longer functional. I spent a lot of time trying to find where the actual problem is originating, the database connection constrains was the major information not to be visible to the users.

Project Duration: The initial estimated time of the project was 1 months. But after completing Phase II, I estimated the required days to be 20 for Coding/Debugging, Testing and Documentation. The actual time spent on the entire project is about 1.5 months which is 15 days more than the estimate.


This project gave me experience that I didn't have before. It presented me a good exposure on what is it like to work on real-world project. I learned how to undertake certain tasks under pressure. Going through the entire life cycle process of software development made learn how to get organized. Most of the software used is cheap and we can implement this system almost immediately and low cost. E-Commerce is rapidly finding its way into many businesses worldwide and such is the nature of the Web that any organization can participate in this new business paradigm.