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Characteristics of .NET Framework

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  • Last Updated : 01 Jul, 2022
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.NET is a software framework that is designed and developed by Microsoft. The first version of the .Net framework was 1.0 which came in the year 2002. In easy words, it is a virtual machine for compiling and executing programs written in different languages like C#, VB.Net, etc.

 .NET is the framework is used for developing and creating applications such as:

  • Console applications
  • Web applications
  • Windows forms applications
  • Web services
  • Event-driven applications

It exist between application programs and operating system. Applications developed for .NET run inside .NET framework. It supports object oriented programming paradigm which user can work with different languages like C#, VB.NET for applications. It provides various libraries of codes to be reused by .NET compliant languages.

Characteristics of .NET Framework:

1. Language Interoperability: Language Interoperability means code written in any language can be used by other languages and there is an access provided to COM components in the System. In other words, this is the ability of code to  interact with code which is written using a different programming language. It can help to maximize code reusability and therefore improve the efficiency of the development process.

2. Portable: The .NET Framework provides a common platform to write portable programs using different languages of .NET environment, based on open Internet standards which allow different devices, software’s and applications to work together across a wide and dispersed network of networks.

3. Type Safety: During program execution, the type checker ensures that all objects and values, and the references to those objects and values, have a valid type. For example, the type checker ensures that only an integer value is assigned to an integer variable. The type checker also ensures that only valid operations are performed on the objects or values. 

4. Managed Multithreading Support: Applications running in the CLR can utilize the managed multithreading support. Multithreading requires careful programming For most tasks, you can reduce complexity by queuing requests for execution by thread pool threads.

5. Performance: Its CLR environment promotes safe execution of code, eliminates performance bottlenecks through its garbage collector, minimizes software development conflicts through namespaces and avoids versioning conflicts through assembly manifest.

6. Side by Side Execution: The NET Framework allows you to deploy multiple versions of an application on a system by using assemblies. Assemblies are the deployment units in the NET Framework. An assembly contains the IL code and metadata. The metadata contains information such as the version of the other assemblies on which the assembly depends. The Common Language Runtime uses the version lo information in the metadata to determine application dependencies and enables you to execute multiple versions of an application side-by-side. 

7. Common Type System: This provides the necessary data types, values, and object types, which you need to develop applications in different languages. All the NET languages share Common Type System. This implies that a String in Visual Basic .NET is the same as a String in Visual C# or in Visual C++ NET. All the NET languages have access to the same class libraries. In addition, all languages are equally powerful. There is no superior language in .NET i.e. Visual Basic .NET is as powerful as Visual C# or Visual C++ NET.

8. Parallel Computing: The NET Framework 4.0 introduces a new programming model for writing multithreaded and asynchronous code that greatly simplifies the work of application and library developers. 

9. Dynamic Language Runtime: The dynamic language runtime is a new runtime environment that adds a set of services for dynamic languages to the Common Language Runtime. The CLR makes it easier to develop dynamic languages run on the .NET framework and to add dynamic features to statically typed language.

10. Automatic memory management: While developing applications developers had to develop an eye on system resource like memory. ..NET takes this worry away from developer by handling memory on its own. The garbage collector takes care of freeing unused objects at appropriate intervals.

A major feature of NET framework CLR is that the runtime automatically handles the allocate and release of an object’s memory resources Automatic memory management enhances code quality and developers productivity without negatively impacting performance The Garbage Collector responsible for collecting the objects no longer referenced by application. 

11.  Language Independence: Language Independence makes use of the power of various languages in one platform. It means programmer’s can develop their applications in any of the language supported by NET framework .NET framework supports various programming languages such as Microsoft Visual  Basic NET, Microsoft Visual J# NET etc. After Compilation the source code of all these languages converted into Common Intermediate Language (CL) that enhances Language Independence.

12. Base Class Library: The Base Class Library (BCL) is a library of functionality available to all languages in the NET Framework. The BCL provides classes that encapsulate a number of common functions including file reading and writing graphic rendering, database interaction, XML document manipulation.

13. Enhancements to ASP. NET & ADO .NET: ASP. NET & ADO .NET is a subset of .NET framework. .NET framework provides enhancement to this technologies.

14. Security: Windows platform was always criticized for poor security mechanisms. Microsoft has taken great efforts to make .NET platform safe and secure for enterprise applications Features such as type safety, code access security etc. 

15. Intellisense:.NET IDE supports Intellisense feature that helps in automatic code compilations. It helps in reducing typo effects and mistakes.

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