Introduction to VBScript
Microsoft’s scripting language to develop dynamic web pages is called Visual Basic Scripting or VB Scripting. It is used in Windows Operating System and is a client-side scripting language similar to Visual Basic. It gives different functionalities to the web pages and designs the user interaction in a different manner. It is easy to learn, and windows administrators find it easy to use than any other scripting languages. It is an untyped language, and the developer cannot define the datatypes in advance in the scripts. VB Script is not case sensitive and has an extension of .vbs in the language.
Understanding VBScript and its Applications
Well, that story was of this on the front-end side. Considering the back-end, yes, It is also used for server-side processing of web pages, mostly with ASP (Active Server Pages). The ASP type library and the ASP engine invoke the .dll files to run the VBScript. An ASP page has these sections embedded within <% and %> that switch the contexts.
It is also used in developing Windows Applications. Any standalone VBScript will have a .vbs extension.
- It is fairly easy to learn, even for those who do not have prior programming experience.
- If you’re someone who knows Visual Basic (VB) or Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) then, It will help you leverage your knowledge in them.
- It is embedded within HTML pages and ASP Pages; sometimes, it is good to have a basic understanding of those and write code with elegance.
Working with VBScript
Below is the point that will discuss how does it work:
1. Let’s write the first VBScript
In this example, let’s print a sentence on to our Internet Explorer. So, let’s see how to embed VBScript inside an HTML page.
2. Case Insensitive Language
It is a case insensitive language, which means that any keyword or variable spelled the same way irrespective of a case (whether an upper case or lower case) is treated the same. For example, variables INT_COUNT and int_count are treated the same.
3. Variables in VBScript
There are few rules in declaring a variable.
- The variable name must start with an alphabet.
- The maximum length of variable names can be 255 characters.
- Variable names must be unique (even with spellings as it is a case insensitive language)
The variables are declared using the keyword ‘dim’. There is only one primary datatype called Variant, and this is why all the variables are declared using ‘dim’.
For example – Dim var1, var2
Scope of Variables
There are three scopes of the variables –
- DIM: This has a procedural scope. That is, the variables are visible only within the procedure or the function to speak in simple terms.
- Public: The public scope variables are visible to any other procedures across all the associated scripts.
- Private: The private scope variables are visible to the procedures within the script it is declared.
4. Decision Making
It supports decision making with if statements, if else statements, nested if statements and also switch statements.
5. Looping through the code.
As it supports all the programming logic to implement, it has the following syntax to loop through the code.
There are no significant advantages in this era over any other scripting languages that are existing. But yes, with its existing features,
- It is used to script administrative tasks on Windows (but today, it is mostly replaced by Windows PowerShell).
- It is the scripting language for Quick Test Professional (QTP), a widely used test automation tool.
- It is the internal scripting language for embedded applications.
- DBMS Intersystem Cache also implements VBScript.
- It has strong support for error handling, subroutines, etc.
- It is used instead of VBA as a macro language for Outlook 97.
Getting Started With VBScript
There are ample good resources to learn VBScript, but nothing would be a match for Microsoft’s official documentation.
- Official VBScript Documentation
- VBScript Wikipedia
- VBScript as one of the 40 programming languages course by EDUCA.
Career Growth with VBScript as a Skill
Well, because It is very restricted to the Windows environment only and the world is moving towards Open Source Platforms and cross-platform compatible software, It might not have a really great scope. Yet, there are some organizations that have embraced Windows for all their tasks. Therefore, one might find some legacy software running on VBScript and because it is something that is uncommon today, and you being a person with arcane knowledge, might end up getting handsome pay and demand in the industry.
Hence, there might not be high profits of being skilled in it, but certainly, there is no loss either. But, the scarcity of VBScript developers can be leveraged into an advantage for sure.
This has been a guide to What is VBScript. Here we discuss the understanding, working, career growth, skills, and advantages. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –