Absolute Positioning of Controls in VS 2008: Forget It Exists!
Mikhail Arkhipov has recently posted a tip how to drag a control in VS 2008 and have it absolutely positioned on a web page. Here’s my advice: forget this feature exists! Here’s why.
There existed a hideous MS_POSITIONING attribute some time ago which allowed the VS 2003 designer to drag and drop server controls on a page and position them via the
position: absolute CSS rule. My suggestion then was, and still is, to avoid this practice. Don’t get sweet-talked into designing WebForms the same way as WinForms. They differ in just about everything: state, execution environment, interactivity, control over layout, threading, etc.
Another important point here is: form follows function. Dragging server controls and dropping them in arbitrary spots is backward thinking.
Consider page structure first. Put building blocks where they are supposed to be. Endow them with function. The CSS Zen Garden is exactly that: one page with intended structure, first; various presentations, second.
A lot of articles and books have been written on this subject including several sections in Andy Clarke’s Transcending CSS.