This tutorial will show you how to create your own RSS feed using ASP.NET and VB

In this tutorial, you will learn how to create an RSS feed for your content to be subscribed to.

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. It allows you to easily notify people (and machines) of updates to your content. It does this by generating an XML file of your latest posts, blogs, entries, etc. For this XML file, we need to follow a certain structure to create somewhat of a standard for machines to decode our Syndication. This structure looks something like this:

In order for us to generate this XML file, we need something to generate from – content. For this example, I have created a sample SQL database with one table – Articles. Within this table, we have the following columns: ID, Title, Category, DateTimeAdded, and Article. These columns aim to replicate a usual blog entry.

RSS feeds are usually found under the feed sub-directory of a site, so go ahead and add a folder named feed to your project, and then create a Default.aspx page in that folder. Once done, we will modify the ASPX code. We will not be generating any HTML, so we need to strip out the majority of the default code that is in there. All we are going to use is the following:

This OutputCache line will only allow the code-behind to run 300 seconds after it has been run. The application will store a version in cache for 300 seconds.

Now we can move to the code-behind. The first thing we want to do here is to add the following assembly references we will be using:

Here, we are simply creating a new instance of the XmlTextWriter class and using it to generate our XML document. We loop through our database to get the latest articles, and write them into the XML file.

The entire code-behind will look something like this:

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