What is .NET?

What is .NET?

What is .NET?

What is .NET and what is it used for? It is a software development platform created by Microsoft that provides tools and libraries for building various types of applications, including desktop applications, web applications, mobile applications, cloud-based services, and more.

It offers a framework that allows developers to create software using multiple programming languages and tools while providing a common runtime environment for execution.

.NET consists of several components:

Common Language Runtime (CLR):

This is the core runtime environment of the framework. It provides various services such as memory management, type safety, exception handling, and execution of code written in different programming languages. It also includes a Just-In-Time (JIT) compiler that compiles intermediate language (IL) code into machine code for execution.

Base Class Library (BCL):

The BCL is a collection of pre-built classes and libraries that provide fundamental functionality for application development. It includes classes for working with data structures, input/output, networking, security, and more.

Framework Class Library (FCL):

The FCL is an extension of the BCL and provides additional classes and libraries for building specific types of applications, such as Windows Forms applications, ASP.NET web applications, and more.


.NET supports multiple programming languages, including C#, VB.NET (Visual Basic), F# (a functional-first programming language), and more. These languages can be used interchangeably within the framework.

Development Tools:

Microsoft provides various development tools for building these applications, including Visual Studio, an integrated development environment (IDE) that offers features for coding, debugging, and designing user interfaces.

The Core and Framework:

The .NET Core is a cross-platform, open-source implementation of the .NET framework that is designed to run on Windows, Linux, and macOS. It is optimised for modern application development scenarios, including cloud-based and containerised applications.

The Framework on the other hand, is the original implementation of the platform primarily designed for Windows applications.


ASP is a framework within the .NET platform for building web applications and services. It provides tools and libraries for creating dynamic web pages, handling HTTP requests, and managing state on the web.

Entity Framework:

Entity Framework is an Object-Relational Mapping (ORM) framework that simplifies database access and manipulation by allowing developers to work with database objects as if they were regular .NET objects.

It has evolved over the years to meet the changing needs of software development and has gained popularity for its versatility, cross-platform capabilities, and developer-friendly features.

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