Friday, May 18, 2012

[.NET 4.5] Some of the features that will be provided by the next version of the .NET framework (1/2)

The next release of the .NET framework integrates many new features to enable high productivity, good performance and support for all kinds of display devices (PC, mobile, browser, tablets, etc…).

The .NET framework has been reworked and ameliorated on almost all levels from the bottom to the top (CLR, BCL, EF, WCF, WF, ASP.NET, etc…)  to build this new version 4.5.

Common Language Runtime (CLR)

The Garbage Collection extensions named background Garbage Collection that were introduced in .NET 4.0 are further optimized and fine-tuned in .NET framework 4.5.

Large object are allocated on the Large Object Heap. The .NET framework 4.5 contains significant performance improvements, including better algorithms for free memory management of the Large Object Heap. This is especially interesting when using 64 bit processes. Additionally arrays in 64 bit processes may now be larger than 2GB.

Another improvement in the runtime is the support of optional background multi-core JIT compilation to improve application performance.

Several new features were added for parallel computing including improved performance, increased control, a new dataflow library, and improved support for parallel debugging and performance analysis.

Base Class Libraries (BCL)

The new version of .NET is all about asynchrony. Many new async methods were added to the BCL (for example in the following libraries mscorlib.dll, System.Xml.dll, System.Data.dll, System.Web.dll, System.Net.Http.dll). The performance of existing types in the framework was highly optimized.

At last .NET 4.5 contains its own ZIP implementation. No need to to this manually or use an external library such as SharpZipLib anymore. The new ZipFile and ZipArchive classes are introduced for manipulating ZIP files efficiently.

Furthermore the Managed Extensibility Framework (MEF) now supports generic types, multiple scopes, and a convention-based programming model.

Entity Framework 5.0 (EF)

The final release of Entity Framework version 5.0 (currently in version beta2) will be included in the .NET framework 4.5.

Some of the new features are:

  • Enum support for Model First, Database First and Code First
  • Table-Valued functions in the database using Database First
  • Spatial data types in Model First, Database First and Code First
  • Multiple performance enhancements (improvements for some queries of up to 600%)
  • Automatically compiled LINQ queries (.NET 4.5 supports the automatic caching of query compilations)
  • Usage of LocalDb instead of SQLEXPRESS for Visual Studio 11


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