You have probably heard these two expressions many times: “There are no perfect things in the world” (or in short: “No one is perfect”), and “Our shortcomings are an extension of our virtues, and vice versa.”
Both of these sayings entirely apply to any, even the most popular and universal software solutions. The .NET platform is by no means an exception in this case. In the case of some developments, it turns out to be an ideal choice. But it would be more appropriate to look for different approaches in other situations.
This article will try to sort out the pros and cons of this popular platform to provide you with as much data as possible for an informed decision.
What is the .NET platform? Briefly about the main
Since the .NET framework is not just one of the most popular development environments but the most popular solution in the world, the knowledge base on this subject is verily limitless.
The information available in this compendium lets you understand the most minor nuances of the architecture and the functioning of this framework.
We will try to formulate an answer to the question: “Why is the number of .NET developers worldwide, according to the calculations of startup advisor Mahesh Chad, reaching approximately 8 million people and continues to grow?
First, you should keep in mind that the .NET platform is not something single and indivisible. This name combines four implementations, each of which has its own specifics. There are:
- the Universal Windows Platform (UWP),
- the .NET Framework,
- NET Core.
The oldest of these elements – the .Net Framework, in turn, has four components:
- WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation),
- NET Forms,
- Windows Forms,
- and the corresponding class library.
This implementation of the .NET platform works only with Windows, so you can often find complaints about the limited use of this development environment. However, in fact, already 4 years after the release of the .Net Framework, Microsoft released the .NET Core cross-platform solution, which made this platform universal.
.NET Core works excellent with all operating systems and has everything you need to interact with various cloud technologies. .NET Core combines the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) and ASP.NET Core.
Xamarin, also part of the .NET platform, is fully focused on developing mobile applications.
Finally, the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) provides tools for developing apps for Windows 10, various mobile devices, and the Internet of Things.
As you can see from this brief overview, individual implementations of the .NET and the entire platform as a whole provide .NET developers with the amplest opportunities for creating applications for any system. Thus, sweeping assertions that the .NET platform is only suitable for running under Windows are clearly generalizations and do not stand up to scrutiny upon closer examination.
What areas of programming .NET is the best for?
Due to the cross-platform origin and the breadth of opportunities provided by each element of .NET, this development environment allows you to create both front-end applications and back-end solutions. In the first case, .NET provides first-class UI design deliverables, and in the second case, reliable server-side performance of any software solution.
However, there are areas for which, one might say, .NET is downright designed. In other cases, it is definitely worth looking for another development environment.
Let’s start with what .NET does best.
- Enterprise applications and complex production control systems.
- Web applications and programs for mobile devices.
- Messengers and other applications that provide any form of communication.
- Native applications for desktop systems, especially various graphics packages.
We have listed the strengths of the .NET platform. Now is the time to talk about its disadvantages and limitations.
- The main disadvantage that affects the cost of development and the further price of the software is the reasonably high cost of a license for Visual Studio. In an environment where there are many free frameworks and development environments around, this factor can negatively assess the estimation of economic feasibility while using the .NET platform.
- Difficulties with providing implementation and consistency when it comes to synchronizing and blocking parallel processes.
- This problem seems to be common to all Microsoft products, starting with the Windows OS. Developers are in too hurry to bring a new version to market and start getting paid for it. Such an approach turns buyers of their products into forced beta testers. As a rule, new features announced by Microsoft at presentations look much more impressive than they are in practical use. Ultimately, after numerous complaints and bug reports, the necessary corrections and improvements are made to certain parts of the code. However, this practice makes us extremely cautious about any relevant innovations from this developer.
This is an approximate balance of the undoubted numerous advantages of the .NET platform and some of its most apparent disadvantages. In any case, the sheer popularity of this development environment suggests that the benefits far outweigh the lacks.