A few days ago, on November 8th, Microsoft has released .NET 6 and Visual Studio 2022. .NET 6 is all set to deliver massive performance gains for cloud, mobile, and desktop apps.
This long-awaited roll-out is the result of the unifying effort by the .NET team and community to transform the proprietary .NET framework into an open-source, cross-platform development platform.
.NET 6.0 is the first LTS release after .Net Core 3.1 was released in 2019. The support of .NET 5 will end in mid-2022. As we all know, LTS versions are scheduled to release every two years with short-term releases in between.
As this update is talk of the town, let’s look into the new features and massive performance gains in .NET 6.
Microsoft Announced .Net 6: What’s New?
Along with .NET 6, Microsoft announced general availability for Visual Studio 2022 which is the first 64-bit release of Visual Studio IDE.
Note: If you want to use .NET 6, you must upgrade your current VS version to Visual Studio 2022.
.NET 6 Highlights: The Fastest .NET Yet
What does it offer?
- Improved performance across the board
- Hot Reload
- Unified platform for browser, cloud, desktop, mobile, and IoT
- Improved Security
- Arm64 Support
- C# 10 and F#6 with language improvements
- Improved cloud diagnostics
- New APIs for HTTP/3, processing JSON, mathematics
- Long-term support version
Let’s explore .NET 6.0 in detail.
.NET 6 is described as the “Fastest .NET yet” by Microsoft and the team to highlight massive performance improvements that make .NET faster, efficient, and secure. Developers around the world are excited about .NET 6 that supports Apple Silicon (Arm64) and it has also been improved for Windows Arm64. With the improvements in file I/O, hot reload, PGO, and improved APIs, .NET is all set to increase developer productivity, performance, and speed.
This is one of the key features that can increase developer productivity and performance hugely. Hot Reload enables developers to make a number of code edits to an existing running application. This results in reduced time as there is no need to wait for rebuild, restart, or navigate to the same spot where you were changing code.
Hot Reload is now available with a variety of apps such as ASP.NET Core, Blazor, Console, Windows Forms(WinForms), WPF, .NET MAUI, WinUI3, Azure functions, and so on.
Unified .NET Platform:
.NET 6 is a unified platform that serves the needs of all app types such as cloud, desktop, IoT, browser, and mobile apps. New capabilities and improvements are available across the platform at the same time, making it easier to reuse code across apps and platforms.
.NET 6.0 also comes with Machine Learning, WebAssembly, and .NET Multi-platform App UI (.NET MAUI) additions that help widen its reach and deliver modern app experiences across devices and systems.
Security has been significantly improved in .NET 6 version. Security is a top priority for the .NET platform and this time .NET 6 is equipped with threat modeling, cryptography, and defense in depth mitigations. On Linux, all cryptographic operations rely on OpenSSL while on Windows and macOS, this can be done with OS-provided functionality.
Arm64 is in trend these days and is a different processor (CPU) architecture. ARM is a family of reduced instruction set computing (RISC) architecture for computer processors. .NET 6 is the first release that natively supports Apple Silicon (Arm 64) and Windows Arm64 OSes.
Developer can install both Arm64 and x64 versions of .NET on macOS, Windows 11, and Arm64 OSes. This support helps developers achieve higher performance and faster execution.
C# 10 And F#6:
C#10 is also released as a part of .NET 6 and Visual Studio 2022. It comes with many new features that make the code clearer, expressive, and faster. Also, new F# 6, shipped with .NET 6 RC2 and Visual Studio 2022 RC2 is more focused on making language more performant, interoperable, and simpler.
Both languages offer significant performance improvements, making them more uniform, powerful, intuitive, and easier to learn.
Improved Cloud Diagnostics:
Cloud diagnostics have been improved with this newly shipped .NET 6. Cloud diagnostics offer real-time error monitoring to investigate, identify, and resolve the crashes that impact performance. In .NET 6.0, this is improved with OpenTelemetry and dotnet monitor.
JSON APIs are more capable and offer significant performance gain in .NET 6. Also, performance-oriented math APIs have been added to System. Math. There are major API changes in .NET 6 that include System.Text.Json, HTTP/3, and many others.
One of the key points about this release is the LTS version. Yes, .NET 6.0 is the LTS version and it will be there in the market for the upcoming three years.
Also note that .NET 6 is not supported with Visual Studio 2019, Visual Studio for Mac 8, or MSBuild 16. You need to upgrade to Visual Studio 2022 if you want to use .NET 6.
You can read details of the updates on Microsoft’s official web page announcing .NET 6. Let’s see what Visual Studio 2022 brings to the table.
Apart from this, .NET 6 offers improvements and features such as Source build, IL trimming, improved Blazor components, HTTP/3, Dynamic Profile-guided Optimization (PGO), File IO Improvements, single-file apps, and much more.
Visual Studio 2022: Go From Idea To Code Faster Than Ever
Visual Studio 2022 is more approachable, lightweight, faster, and designed for all types of apps. Visual Studio 2022 offers a cleaner, intelligent, and faster development experience.
In this latest release, Visual Studio is equipped with IntelliCode which is an AI-assisted code companion that helps developers type less and can also spot repeated edits and suggest fixes. By using the Hot Reload feature, developers can increase their productivity and reduce time as they can see changes immediately.
Visual Studio 2022 is the platform that is suitable for building all types of apps such as apps built with Windows Forms, Win32, cloud-native applications, machine learning apps, and Blazor apps. It is for every developer.
One more noticeable thing about this version is, it is the first 64-bit release of Visual Studio. This means it can take full benefits of modern hardware to create more scalable, larger, and complex apps.
Visual Studio 2022 Highlights:
- A 64-bit Visual Studio
- Updated UI, themes, icons, and font
- Simplified Azure Deployment
- Robust Support for C++
- Real-time Collaboration
- Diagnostics and Debugging
- Improved Code Search
- Powerful Git & GitHub Support
Let’s look into the details of Visual Studio 2022.
A 64-bit Visual Studio:
Visual Studio is no longer limited to ~4GB of memory in the main devenv.exe process. Developers can open, edit, run, and debug even the most complex projects without any memory-related hurdles.
Refreshed User Interfaces:
This 2022 version comes with new user interfaces and subtle touches that modernize the UI and appeal to the developers. The modern UIs focused on reducing complexing, increasing clarity, and decreasing the cognitive load so that developers can enjoy building great products.
- Updated icons for better clarity and legibility
- Improved product themes
- Cascadia Code for better readability
- Integration with Accessibility Insights
Customization is easier than ever before in Visual Studio 2022. Developers will be able to customize many aspects of the IDE to syncing settings across devices.
Simplified Azure Deployment:
It is now easy to build modern, cloud-based applications with Azure in Visual Studio 2022. It offers a good supply of repositories that describe common patterns used in modern apps. Developers can also diagnose any issues quickly with the remote debugger attached to the application.
Robust Support for C++:
Visual Studio 2022 includes robust support for the C++ workload with new productivity features, IntelliSense, and C++20 tooling. Developers can now easily manage and debug large projects through improved diagnostics.
In Visual Studio 2022, Live Share will open new opportunities for collaborating with others, exchanging ideas, reviewing code, and pair programming. It offers integrated text chat so that developers can have quick conversations without any context switching.
Diagnostics and Debugging:
Developers will notice performance improvements in the code debugger with additional features like flame charts, dependent breakpoints, and integrated decompilation experiences.
Improved Code Search:
Code search is a crucial part of the lifecycle. Developers will notice better performance for code search, code sharing, assessing the impact of changes during refactoring, finding issues, or code reviews.
Powerful Git & GitHub Support:
Visual Studio 2022 has built-in support for Git version control to clone, create, and open repositories. It includes powerful support for Git and GitHub. Developers will be able to notice built-in logic and checkpoints that guide them through the merge and review process. The Git tool has got everything developers require for pushing changes to code, managing branches, and resolving merge conflicts.
.NET 6: Achieve High Performance, Usability, Functionality, And Security
“.NET 6 is our latest LTS release. We encourage everyone to move to it, particularly if you are using .NET 5. We’re expecting it to be the fastest adopted .NET release ever.”
– Richard Lander, Program Manager, .NET Team
.NET 6 is focused not only on increasing developers’ productivity but making you more efficient and capable in everyday development. New features and performance improvements in .NET 6 also reduce your cost and time, helping you create apps that are faster, secure, and reliable.
Have you already moved to .NET 6.0? If not, upgrade to this latest release and share your experience with us!