Microsoft has rolled out the production release of .NET 7, the latest version of the company’s cross-platform, open-source software development platform. The update brings performance enhancements, C# language upgrades, and a roster of cloud-native, container-based development capabilities.
Key themes of the release cover enabling developers to write performant web APIs and build cloud-native applications and deploy them across Linux. Developer productivity and containerisation of projects also are emphasised, along with setting up CI/CD workflows in GitHub actions.
Available November 8 at get.dot.net/7 for Windows, Linux, and macOS, .NET 7 is the third major release in Microsoft’s .NET unification journey. With .NET 7, developers can learn once and reuse skills with one SDK, one runtime, and one set of base libraries to build all kinds of applications including cloud, web, desktop, mobile, artificial intelligence, and IoT.
Developer productivity enhancements cover areas such as container-first workflows. Also, developers can build cross-platform mobile and desktop apps form the same codebase.
For the C# 11 language, the goal is for developers to be able to write less code. New features such as generic math are made possible while coding is simplified with object initialisation enhancements, raw string literals, and other capabilities.
Other highlights of .NET 7 include:
- Continued performance improvements.
- One BCL (base class library).
- Native support for ARM64 systems.
- Enhanced .NET support on Linux.
- HTTP/3 and improvements to minimal APIs for cloud-native apps.
- Native AOT for console applications. This produces binaries that are standalone executables in a target platform’s specific file format, producing benefits such as fast start-up and a small, self-contained deployment.
- The F# 7 functional language features continued work on reliability and support for existing features.
.NET 7 is being released in conjunction with ASP.NET Core 7 and Entity Framework Core 7, as well as .NET MAUI (Multi-platform App UI), Windows Forms, Windows Presentation Foundation, and the Orleans 7 framework for building distributed applications.
For the Blazor web apps development tool, meanwhile, .NET 7 improves the WebAssembly debugging experience and supports the handling of location change events.
.NET MAUI, which debuted in September, had drawn the ire of some developers who did not believe the technology was fully ready. But Scott Hunter, Microsoft vice president of product for the Azure developer experience, said this week that Microsoft has since improved .NET MAUI.
Along with .NET 7, Microsoft is releasing the Visual Studio 2022 17.4 IDE. Visual Studio 2022 introduced 64-bit capabilities to the IDE.
Prior to this production release, .NET 7 underwent extensive preview and release candidate phases. .NET 8, which is likely to arrive in a year, is expected to focus on similar themes such as modern workloads, web APIs, and more seamless cloud-native development.