A Session object stores information about, or change settings for a user session.
When you are working with an application on your computer, you open it, do some changes and then
you close it. This is much like a Session. The computer knows who you are. It knows when you
open the application and when you close it. However, on the internet there is one problem: the
web server does not know who you are and what you do, because the HTTP address doesn't maintain
ASP solves this problem by creating a unique cookie for each user. The cookie is sent to the
user's computer and it contains information that identifies the user. This interface is called
the Session object.
The Session object stores information about, or change settings for a user session.
Variables stored in a Session object hold information about one single user, and are available to
all pages in one application. Common information stored in session variables are name, id, and
preferences. The server creates a new Session object for each new user, and destroys the Session
object when the session expires.
A session starts when:
A session ends if a user has not requested or refreshed a page in the application for a specified
period. By default, this is 20 minutes.
If you want to set a timeout interval that is shorter or longer than the default, use the Timeout
The example below sets a timeout interval of 5 minutes:
Use the Abandon method to end a session immediately:
Note: The main problem with sessions is WHEN they should end. We do not know if the user's
last request was the final one or not. So we do not know how long we should keep the session
"alive". Waiting too long for an idle session uses up resources on the server, but if
the session is deleted too soon the user has to start all over again because the server has
deleted all the information. Finding the right timeout interval can be difficult
Hint: Only store SMALL amounts of data in session variables
The most important thing about the Session object is that you can store variables in it.
The example below will set the Session variable username to "Donald Duck" and
the Session variable age to "50":
When the value is stored in a session variable it can be reached from ANY page in the ASP
The line above returns: "Welcome Donald Duck".
You can also store user preferences in the Session object, and then access that preference to
choose what page to return to the user.
The example below specifies a text-only version of the page if the user has a low screen
The Contents collection contains all session variables.
It is possible to remove a session variable with the Remove method.
The example below removes the session variable "sale" if the value of the session
variable "age" is lower than 18:
To remove all variables in a session, use the RemoveAll method:
The Contents collection contains all session variables. You can loop through the Contents
collection, to see what's stored in it:
Output Will Be :
If you do'nt know the number of items in the Contents collection, you can use the Count
You can loop through the StaticObjects collection, to see the values of all objects stored in the
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