Last Updated on August 27, 2020
.NET Core Vs. .NET Framework: Which runtime should developers use for developing software applications?
The old and classical debate is still on. Today I am going to bring an interesting visually engaging Infographic blog post, which will give you all your answers and eradicate your confusion.
The .NET ecosystem comprises of a family of software development languages, frameworks, tools, etc. like JIT, AOT, BCL, C#, GC, VB.NET, ASP.NET, ML.NET, Entity Framework, WinForms, WPF, F#, Xamarin, an runtime.
However, the most curiosity generating question remains- How .NET Core is different from the .NET Framework? Or if one should upgrade from .NET Framework to .NET Core?
With this post, I will try to make your perceptions of both these runtimes clear, and I will shed some light on some crucial factors that help you choose the right platform for your web application development.
What is .NET?
Microsoft built the .NET software development platform to create several types of applications. Using .NET, developers can use the tools and libraries handy to build their aspired software applications.
If we talk about server-side applications, .NET provides two implementations which have the same components for developers:
Quick Introduction to .NET Framework
The .NET Framework is the Next Generation Windows Service by Microsoft persisting since the year 2000. The runtime environment of this Framework helps developers build Windows applications, web services, and desktop apps for Windows.
The two most crucial components of the .NET Framework are:
- The Common Language Runtime (CLR)
- The Extensive Class Library
In all, .NET is an object-oriented environment, which is easy to use and supports multiple languages. The only constraint is it being closed-source, to overcome which Microsoft brings .NET Core as an open-source platform.
A Brief on .NET Core
.NETCore is a framework that aids in building applications for all operating systems- Linux, Mac, and Windows. It supports programming languages like C#, F#, Visual Basic for developing apps and libraries.
Admirable features like microservices, high-performance web, multiple APIs & components, and more make this platform adorable for the software developers. Websites, mobile, cloud, gaming, desktop, web, and AI applications can be built using .NET Core.
.NET Core Vs. .NET Framework: The Fundamental Difference Between The Two
The .NET Framework enables developers to build apps only for the Windows platform, whereas .NET Core has cross-platform compatibility, which goes with building apps for Mac, Linux, and Windows.
You can compile and access the programs written in the .NET Framework from one language into other languages. Whereas, the programs you write in .NET Core are ready to migrate from current application to other platforms.
Microsoft licensed the .NET Framework release; hence, it is a proprietary software apart from some components of the Framework, which are open-source. However, .NET Core is a completely free open-source software framework.
Using the .NET Framework, developers need to deploy their applications only via the Internet Information Server. An aid to do so, they may use Xcopy deployment which copies files to the intended directories. Small and straightforward applications work well with Xcopy, but migrating complex apps is very tedious.
.NETCore, however, offers flexible deployment. The latest versions of .NET Core can be instantly updated and uploaded on one or many machines without affecting the existing app. Also, apps can be directly deployed via the cloud, or the developers can create their custom hosting process and self-host.
Performance & Scalability
Apps built on .NET Core perform better than those developed on .NET Framework. With Core, developers can drastically improve the performance of their applications even without additional hardware. Thanks to the automatic recompilation feature that optimizes the apps build with .NET Core.
Also, developers can build, test, and deploy apps directly on the cloud, which ensures hassle-free scalability and performance.
App development with .NET Framework lags in security, flexibility, and speed. The just-in-time compiler first compiles the CIL code into executable code and captures it on .NET Native Image Generator utility for manual compiling and caching.
Applications built on the .NET Framework can take advantage of the in-built class libraries that enable easy operations like file reading/writing, graphic rendering, XML doc manipulation, and DB interaction. And similarly, even apps built with .NET Core can use all these robust class libraries.
Moreover, .NET Core provides the redesigned common language runtime called CoreCLR, through which developers can choose, pick, and include only those essential libraries that they require in their .NET application and omit the others.
What Would You Choose and When?
From the above-displayed comparison of the two platforms, .NET Core is giving a greater benefit to the developers by saving time and resources.
Nevertheless, let us find out what kind of applications you can build with both these platforms.
Choose .NET Framework for:
★ Current .NET Framework applications
Sometimes, you do not need to migrate your entire application to .NET Core. Especially, if it is a big complex app, and all it requires is some modification, you must enhance its features in .NET Framework itself. Also, you can extend your current app by adding new features or services built on ASP .NET Core.
★ When your app needs third-party libraries or NuGet packages
Most of the libraries support .NET Standard. However, when your API surface becomes much larger and needs packages like NuGet or other libraries that are not compatible with .NET Standard libraries, you should still use the .NET Framework.
.NET Standard 2.0 supports code sharing with .NET Core and all other .NET implementations.
★ When .NET technologies are not available for .NET Core
Web Form Applications, ASP .NET Web Pages, WCF Services, all Workflow- services, and programming languages Visual Basic & F# are not yet available for .NET Core. For using these services and technologies in your application, you might have to keep using the .NET Framework.
★ When your platform doesn’t support .NET Core
Some platforms are not adaptive to .NET Core, and some services like the Azure services are not available for .NET Core. For such applications, you must continue with the classic .NET Framework.
Alternatively, go for .NET Core when:
★ Building cross-platform applications
As you want your application to run on multiple OSes and platforms, .NET Core is the right choice for you. Developers can use Visual Studio for Windows app, Visual Studio Code for Windows, MAC, and Linux apps. Moreover, the command line interface CLI can be useful for all supported platforms.
★ Scalable and high-performance app
.NET Core and ASP .NET Core is the most favorable choice by Microsoft for developing high-performance and scalable apps. You can use as many microservices to achieve the goal of performance. As you use ASP .NET Core, you may save infrastructure costs as it uses lesser Virtual Machines (VM).
★ Various .NET versions in your application
Your app may be depending on several different versions of .NET, and multiple services can co-exist on the same server with .NET Core.
★ For building microservices
Microservices are small software applications that make up the service-oriented architecture. In that case, each of these services represents unique processes, which are independent of each other.
Conclusively, What’s For You?
.NET is the most profound technology that has helped the tech-world take the shape that it is today. ASP.NET developers are the sages that can help you succeed with your business idea. Sit with our expert analysts and project managers to find out what’s the best for you. The best .NET development company brings out the best match suitable for your enterprise application ASP.NET MVP development.
The best .NET development company brings out the best match suitable for your enterprise application. Whereas, for your cross-platform application, collaborate with our .NET Core developers to build experiences that yield results.
Find out the complete infographic for .NET Framework Vs. .NET Core here