MS includes a bunch of reasonably nice validation controls in VS 2005 and one of them includes the ability to validate that a string is a valid (syntactically) a URL. Sort of. If you don't prefix it with 'http://', it says it's invalid. I'd argue that we could just assume it's supposed to be there, but I guess erring on the side of caution is ok. But today, I was just about to post a link on www.opass.org about http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;912914&sd=rss&spid=2855 and the stupid control says it is not a valid URL, yet clearly I can browse to it! Possibly I'm missing some service pack, hot fix, or super secret turbo switch. Then again, maybe the MSDN guys don't use their own controls?