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Generate HTML or Image preview of a document in C#

We are trying to determine which product we need to select and also not sure what is the difference between the offering from Aspose vs Groupdocs.

Our scenario:
We have a site that provides search results and each result has a link pointing to a document that can be downloaded from the site. Our users would like the ability to ‘preview’ documents before downloading and so we would need to convert them (these are generally MS Office docs) to an image or html and then make it available in the UI so that they can either click on it or mouse hover to show. It is also possible that a future enhancement would be to provide the ability to search within the document.

Based on this scenario, which product (Aspose vs GroupDocs) and product family (TOTAL vs Conversion, etc.) would we need to purchase in order to achieve that goal.

Hi Krista,

Thanks for taking interest in our APIs.

The best suitable API for you in this scenario is GroupDocs.Viewer which provides the rendering of each page of the source document into either HTML or image. You can then view/display the rendered HTML pages or images in your UI. The API supports a wide range of the document formats including the MS Office documents.

Currently, the API is available for following platforms.

Please tell us which is the best option for you so that we can move forward to provide you more specific details.

We shall be looking forward to your response.

Warm Regards

Hi - We would need this for the .NET environment.

We use Aspose APIs currently for other projects. I guess what is the difference between using Aspose APIs vs GroupDocs APIs. Are these two APIs targeted for different use cases? One obvious thing that stuck out at me is that the Aspose APIs seem to do a lot more file manipulation than GroupDocs. I am just trying to figure out why someone would choose one over the other. I would like to be able to articulate the difference between the two difference products (Aspose vs GroupDocs).

Hi Krista,

Thanks for coming back.

Yes, Aspose and GroupDocs APIs are targeted for different use cases. Each of the Aspose APIs targets to a specific file format and provides all the features and operations related to that file format i-e Aspose.Pdf deals with the PDF documents and, similarly, Aspose.Words provides Word document processing features and so on. On the other hand, each API at GroupDocs provides a package of some specific features that are related to a range of the document formats i-e GroupDocs.Viewer provides rendering of over 50 document formats. Furthermore, at GroupDocs the required features which are available in multiple Aspose APIs are put together and wrapped up into a single API to fulfill a specific purpose.

In your case, as you said, you are going to deal with MS Office file formats that may include Word documents, PowerPoint Presentations, Excel sheets etc. If you go with the Aspose APIs, you will have to use a separate API for each file format i-e Aspose.Words for Word documents, Aspose.Cells for Excel sheets and so on. However, using GroupDocs.Viewer, for example, you can render all the Office file formats using the single API.

In case of any confusion, please feel free to let us know.

Warm Regards

Hi Krista,

I would like to add more into the above reply of my colleague. The GroupDocs is also providing the free open sourced UI/Front-end sample showcase projects along with its each product. These showcase projects have the similar UI/front end as it was provided in the old GroupDocs 2.x UI based APIs.
For those who are not familiar with the old GroupDocs APIs. They can consider the UI Examples as the best implementation of the most demanded use cases in which all features of the back-end GroupDocs APIs are covered.
The showcase projects have been developed by using various famous platforms/frameworks like, MVC, simple webform based( in .NET) and Spring MVC, Sevlet based, JSP, Struts (in Java).

Moreover, the GroupDocs team is also providing the free support against each UI/Front end project.

To explore more about the GroupDocs products kindly visit:

Please choose best suited option from the above links so that we can move forward to provide you more specific details.