The .NET Core 2 Wave

Will 2017 be the year of .NET Core? Of course it will!

I sat down with Scott Hunter (Director of Program Management for the .NET Platform) on the Eat Sleep Code podcast to talk about all things .NET. Scott shared plans for an exciting year of .NET development including the .NET Core 2 Wave, which includes the .NET Core 2.0 release along with .NET Standard 2.0, adoption strategies, and Visual Studio 2017 tooling.

What to expect with .NET in 2017

Scott elaborated on the status of .NET Standard 2 by saying:

I can say today we've done all the work internally to get all the APIs, they’re actually working now, it just going to take awhile to get them shipped.

Internal builds of .NET Standard 2.0 are finalized and staging to ship. This means that early this year we should see the .NET Core 2 wave begin.

.NET Standard 2.0 targets the intersection of APIs that .NET Framework and Xamarin support. As a result the .NET Core 2.0 wave will allow developers to code share between .NET Framework, .NET Core, and Xamarin by targeting .NET Standard 2.0. This also brings many APIs into parity that were missing from previous versions of .NET Core / Standard. Shipping later this year is UWP support for .NET Standard 2.0, expanding code sharing capabilities to that platform as well.

When should I adopt .NET Core

Since the .NET Core 2 wave is coming many developers want to know "When should I adopt .NET Core". Scott laid out a very clear plan to help weigh out the options.

It's a great solution today (.NET Core 1.x)

Most folks that jump on .NET Core or ASP.NET Core today are primarily doing it because they have a business reason. -Scott

  • If you want to create an ASP.NET Core application that is cross platform;
  • If want to take advantage of building container applications;
  • If you want to break free of global installation with side-by-side versions of .NET Core;
  • If you want superior performance.

The best of both worlds

Scott also shared an excellent tip for developers who are still evaluating whether or not to use ASP.NET Core.

If you do want to try ASP.NET Core or Entity Framework Core today. You can run them against the full framework and have all the APIs that are there (full framework). That's another option if you want to try it today. You don't get the cross platform and side-by-side benefits, but you will get the high performance. So the same ASP.NET Core that ranks #10 in the TechEmpower benchmark for serving JSON will perform the same way on .NET Framework as well.

Should I wait for the .NET Core 2 wave

If you're still not convinced it's time to try ASP.NET Core, then you can always wait for the .NET Core 2 wave. If you need APIs that are missing from .NET Standard 1.x, many are back in .NET Standard 2.0. Also the aforementioned API Parity between .NET Core and Xamarin will mean easy code sharing.

UI for ASP.NET Core is available

It's hard to imagine ASP.NET development without Telerik controls. Telerik (now Progress) has been around since the early days of .NET and continues to support .NET Core with UI for ASP.NET Core. UI for ASP.NET Core includes all of the controls available in UI for ASP.NET MVC with the addition of TagHelpers. Scott shared some fond memories of being introduced to ASP.NET through Telerik controls.

The Telerik controls are I think are one of the things that drew me to .NET back in the original .NET days. – Scott

You could build a slick-awesome application with a lot of functionality in no time with those controls [Telerik Controls]. I'm super happy that there's Core version of those today. – Scott

If you buy this stuff [Telerik Controls], I can do the work of five people myself. – Scott

Visual Studio 2017

If you're currently on .NET Core you're probably using Visual Studio 2015 with preview tooling 3. The first release version of .NET Core tooling will come with Visual Studio 2017. In Visual Studio 2017 projects will revert back to .csproj from project.json. The new .csproj system will include all of the great features introduced in project.json like:

  • Simplified csproj, just a few lines of xml that is very easy to hand edit
  • Simple package references
  • IntelliSense
  • Live package management within the file
  • No need to list all of the files in the project
  • Cross-platform targeting
  • No more GUIDs

We wanted to make sure we didn't lose any of the goodness we learned with project.json. – Scott

What else is in Visual Studio 2017

  • Live unit testing will also debut in Visual Studio 2017;
  • Light weight installer;
  • .NET Core support, no more preview.

Eat Sleep Code podcast

For more details and extras that weren't covered in this post, listen to the show in its entirety below.

Scott Hunter

Scott Hunter works on the .NET Platform with is made up of the .NET Framework, .NET Core and the Managed Languages. Prior to working on the .NET Platform, Hunter helped the Azure Developer Experience team build the Azure SDK’s, App Service Tooling, Azure Redis Cache, Azure API Management, ASP.NET, Entity Framework and the Web Tooling. Since joining the company in 2007, he has made many contributions to the ASP.NET platform including MVC, Web API and more. Scott graduated from Cal State University with a bachelor degree in Computer Science and a minor in Economics.

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