Cool Atlas PasswordStrength Complexity Control

Paul Glavich blogged about a useful little Atlas externder control he built that enables sites to provide real-time password strength feedback on the client to users as they create new passwords (for example: if you have only letters in the password it will list "weak", and then give you immediate feedback as you type and make it stronger).  Below is a simple example of how to use it to point at a standard ASP.NET TextBox:

Create New Password: <asp:textbox id="Txt1" runat="server" mode="Password" />

<PasswordStrength:PasswordStrengthExtenderExtender runat="server">
     <PasswordStrength:PasswordStrengthExtenderProperties DisplayPosition="BelowLeft" PrefixText="Strength: " TargetControlID="Txt1" />

These types of controls are easy to build using the Atlas Control Toolkit SDK -- which includes 12 Atlas Control Extenders with full source and a project template for creating new ones.  In case you missed it, Scott Cate did a nice blog post earlier in the month where he walksthough step-by-step how to use the Atlas Control Toolkit SDK to create a new "TextBoxCounter" extender control from scratch.

The really cool thing is that anyone (including you reading this blog) will shortly be able to create and contribute new controls like these into the Atlas Control Toolkit itself (and hopefully have millions of ASP.NET developers download and use it).  Our plan is to use a collaborative, community contribution model, and have both Microsoft and non-Microsoft developers work jointly on the code together.

We are hosting the Altas Control Toolkit now on the new CodePlex source control repository here.  If you have the VSTS source control client installed, you will be able to enlist and (if you are given contributor rights) will be able to checkout/checkin files within the VS IDE from the Atlas Control Toolkit project on CodePlex.  If you don't have VSTS you will still be able to contribute by downloading a separate client source control utility that you can use with either Visual Studio or the free Visual Web Developer.

Shawn Burke, who runs the Atlas Control Toolkit project, is in the process of finalizing the first draft of the code contribution guidelines and will be publishing it shortly.  Keep an eye on his blog for more details.

Should be fun -- I'm really looking forward to see all the cool controls people build,



  • I really like this control by Paul, its been documented on his podcast he does with Wally a few weeks back. Scott, my question for you is given that this control has great practical usability, is it something you're team may add to the "official" Atlas extenders? p.s. great interview on the .NET show btw :-)

  • Hi scott . I know this doesn't relate to this post . But does atlas works fine in an web farm where the client machine is always sending requests to different servers?

    Any issues with update panel?


  • Hi Rodrigo,

    Yep -- Atlas works fine in a web-farm scenario. &nbsp;The one thing you want to make sure you do is to have the same validationKey in the web.config (or machine.config) files in the farm. &nbsp;That way things like forms authentication and dynamic client scripts will work.

    Hope this helps,


  • Hi Granville,

    Our plan is to use the Atlas Control Toolkit as a way to rapidly build-up the list of controls developers can &quot;just depend on&quot;. &nbsp;I think having this control in it would be great.

    Hope this helps,


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