What is .Net Core?
.NET Core is an open-source, general-purpose development platform maintained by Microsoft and the .NET community on GitHub. It’s cross-platform, supporting Windows, macOS, and Linux, and it performs well in device, cloud, and embedded/IoT scenarios.
In November 2020, Microsoft released .NET 5, a unification of the .NET Core and the older .NET Framework. Subsequent versions (e.g., .NET 6) continue on this path, combining the best of both platforms. It’s worth noting that with the release of .NET 5, they dropped the “Core” branding. Consequently, future releases are just “.NET” followed by the version number.
Here are some key points about .NET Core
- Cross-Platform: .NET Core can run on Windows, macOS, and various distributions of Linux. This makes it attractive for developers who want to develop or run applications on multiple platforms without significant changes.
- Performance: Microsoft built .NET Core to be modular and optimized. It offers high performance for web applications, services, and server-side applications.
- Open Source: One of the significant changes from the traditional .NET Framework is that .NET Core is open source. This means developers can view the source code, contribute to it, and ensure transparency in its development.
- Modular and Lightweight: .NET Core uses a modular architecture. This means developers can include only the necessary libraries for their application, reducing its size and increasing performance.
- Command-Line Interface (CLI): .NET Core includes a powerful command-line interface, which can be used for creating, building, and running applications.
- Compatible with .NET Framework, Xamarin, and Mono: With the .NET Standard, code sharing across these platforms has become more straightforward.
- Containers and Microservices: Due to its modularity and lightweight nature, .NET Core is an excellent choice for microservices architectures and can easily be used within Docker containers.
- Unified Platform with ASP.NET Core: ASP.NET Core is a cloud-optimized framework for web applications and APIs which run on top of .NET Core. This integration provides a unified way to build web-based applications using the power and features of .NET Core.
- Continual Improvements and Regular Updates: Since its launch, .NET Core has seen regular updates. The updates include new feature introductions and performance improvements driven by community feedback.