What is .Net Core and why is it important?

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.Net Core is an open-source software framework that offers a wide range of advantages. Check out the main features that make it a valuable option when developing solutions.

computer with .net core code on the screen?

With the launch of .Net Core, many developers with knowledge in .Net have acquired the ability to build solutions for other platforms outside Windows.

.Net Core was born as an open-source alternative — something unthinkable for the Microsoft world a few years ago —, and it has the support of the .Net Foundation, an organization created to promote open-source development through the .Net ecosystem.

Thanks to this language, it is possible to create modern web apps, Microservices, libraries, and console applications. Its great advantage over other languages is that it makes it possible to build applications on any platform, all with open-source code.

Why is .Net Core important?

What are the main features that make .Net Core a valuable option when developing solutions? Below, I highlight the most important ones that will be useful for both backend and service-based architectures.

1.  It is designed for the Cloud

In the last years, more and more solutions have been deployed on one of the available Cloud platforms, and the most important players in the business (Microsoft with Azure, Google Cloud, and AWS) have been fighting a tough battle to gain the trust of large companies and their engineers. Microsoft with Azure stands out in that battle and the decision to launch, and .Net Core has a lot to do with this.

Cloud deployments are much more complex than desktop deployments. Nowadays, each solution involves a wide variety of technologies, automation plays an essential role, and platforms are managed by an orchestra of Virtual Machines and containers. Furthermore, systems are distributed, fault-tolerant, designed to automatically scale, and developed on different platforms. In this scenario, multiplatform and portable languages are essential; therefore, Microsoft with .Net Core is positioned as a key player.

2.  It is multiplatform

.Net Core is Microsoft’s first truly cross-platform language. Previously, the term cross-platform meant that it could be run on any version of Windows. Nowadays, the same code written in .Net Core can run on Windows, Linux, or MacOS, offering a huge advantage over its predecessors and facilitating deployment and scalability.

One person coding net core and working on two computers

This feature was well-received by developers who used to work on non-Windows platforms. For example, in a “MacBook Pro company” it was unthinkable to use .Net Framework, but now, they can develop (or at least try) on .Net Core. In the past, this would have meant investing a lot of money in the purchase of Windows equipment, while a lot of time had to be invested for developers to become familiar with the new operating system.

Being multiplatform, .Net Core allows you to create new applications (or migrate applications already developed in .Net Framework) in Linux environments, which leads to a well-known reduction in licensing and infrastructure costs.

3.  It is portable

.Net Core is truly portable. An API or an app developed in this language can be migrated to another container — and even to another platform — and will still work without problems. The code and infrastructure are no longer coupled as before.

4.  It is fast

Many tests show that .Net Core has much higher performance (up to 8x) than other languages, resulting in significant money savings for companies.

5.  It is open-source

A man holding a paper with the the word code written on itMicrosoft’s first approach to the open world was with ASP.Net MVC, which is an open-source language (but not so in all the libraries that were part of the .Net framework). For many, this was as much a deception as it was a good intention (although inconclusive). Today, we can say that .Net Core is totally open, as well as its documentation.

This is great news for those devs looking for work with open platforms to add to their stack.

Mostly, open-source software ranks higher than a corporation’s software in terms of flexibility, freedom, security, and reliability. In addition, since a community of developers maintains such open-source software, it is usually at the cutting edge of technology where updates and patches are released fairly quickly.

6.  It is continuously improved through community contribution

Years ago, it was unthinkable that the community could build a Microsoft-sponsored language in an open way.

More than 10,000 devs have contributed to the different Microsoft repositories on GitHub (about 105 of them were Microsoft employees). That’s undoubtedly an unprecedented community effort.

7.  It is suitable for Microservices

The development of applications using Microservices is becoming common. Before Microservices, the most commonly used approach was monolithic, i.e., one service did everything. On the contrary, Microservices separate the responsibilities of the entire application and offer a wide range of benefits:

  • Due to their small size, Microservices can scale quickly and be independent. This means that if a service stops working, there is little risk for the application to crash.
  • They are easier to develop, implement, and debug during the compilation process.

Both .NET Framework and .NET Core support Microservices development; however, .NET Core allows developers to create and integrate Microservices easily and much more efficiently.

8.  It is ideal for use in containers

Containers are commonly used along with a Microservice architecture. .NET Framework can use Windows containers, but the modularity and lightweight of .NET Core features make it preferable for containers.

The last lines…

.NET Core offers a wide range of advantages over the .NET Framework. Thanks to its consistent updates and increased usage, it is gaining momentum within the development community and becoming more popular. This acceptance among engineers allows the community itself to contribute to keeping it up to date and stable.

With all these features, .Net Core is an excellent alternative when choosing a language for our projects, either because of its versatility, its technical attributes, or because it helps your company save money (with licenses, to mention the most relevant).

Another great reason to consider this technology is that when our projects require expert professionals in the field, we can turn to the .Net developers who can migrate to .Net Core effortlessly and master it with ease.

If you are outsourcing your development project, make sure that the software company incorporates .NET Core development into their services offer so that you can be confident that you are putting your project in good hands.

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