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Essential .NET 8 Upgrades: The Top 9 You Can’t Miss

Keeping up with updates is not just beneficial, but vital in the dynamic landscape of software development. .NET 8, the latest iteration of Microsoft’s renowned framework, brings a host of upgrades to the table.

.NET is an open-source developer platform that enables developers to create a variety of web, mobile, desktop, and IoT applications. It supports multiple programming languages, including C#, F#, and Visual Basic. It is also known for its simplicity, modernity, object-oriented, and type-safe programming languages, particularly with C#.

The .NET platform is also free and open-source, a managed computer software framework that works across Windows, Linux, and macOS operating systems. This makes it a cross-platform tool that provides the flexibility needed in today’s diverse computing landscape.

We will spotlight 9 of these enhancements you should be aware of at Vanguard X. These updates have been chosen for their potential to streamline your coding process, optimize application performance, and broaden your development capabilities in your startup.  

Let’s take a look at these noteworthy upgrades and examine how they can refine your .NET development experience.

1. Improvements in System.Text.Json

.NET 8

In the quest for more efficient and effective coding, Microsoft’s .NET 8 brings a variety of improvements to the System.Text.Json namespace. This advancement has been made with the aim of optimizing the performance of applications and making them more robust.

One of the significant enhancements is the introduction of new types. These new types are focused on improving application performance, offering developers an optimized way of handling JSON serialization and deserialization. 

As per the information available, these new types make it easier to manipulate JSON data, leading to more streamlined coding processes and potentially better application performance.  

.NET 8 also adds a new feature that simplifies building pre-compiled applications. One such feature is the IAsyncEnumerable streaming deserialization extension method. This allows for an efficient handling of large-scale data streams

This is particularly helpful in scenarios where immediate processing of each item in the sequence is required. 

2. NEW AOT mode for both Android and WASM 

.NET 8 introduces new AOT (Ahead-of-time) modes for both Android and WebAssembly (WASM). These modes are designed to improve the performance of .NET applications on these platforms.

The AndroidStripAfterAOT mode is a new feature in .NET 8 that removes unused code after the AOT process. This results in smaller application sizes and faster loading times, which can significantly enhance the user experience, particularly on lower-end devices with limited storage and processing power

Similarly, the WasmStripILAfterAOT mode is designed to optimize .NET applications running in WebAssembly. By removing unnecessary Intermediate Language (IL) code after the AOT process, this mode can make .NET applications more efficient and responsive when running in a web browser.

3. Configuration Binding Generator Breaking Change 

.NET 8 Upgrades
.NET 8

In .NET 8, there’s a significant change in how the configuration binding generator operates. It now uses the compiler interceptors preview feature to emit binding logic. This switch enhances the binding generator’s functionality, making it more efficient and effective at managing application settings.

If you need AI software development services, you can use .NET 8 for building intelligent applications. With the new binding generator configuration, developers can easily manage settings for numerous environments—including development, testing, and production—making the development process more streamlined.

4. Containers Switch to Non-Preview Tagging Pattern 

One of the significant changes in .NET 8 is the shift of .NET container images to a non-preview tagging pattern starting from RC1. This change means that the “preview” tag has been removed from the name, reflecting Microsoft’s confidence in the stability and readiness of these container images for production use. 

This move simplifies the tagging system and allows developers to manage their .NET container deployments. It also aligns with the .NET 8’s status as a Long Term Support (LTS) version, which promises extended support and updates.

5. Cross-Building Windows Apps with Win32 Resources on Non-Windows

.NET 8

Another key feature of .NET 8 is the ability to cross-build Windows applications with Win32 resources on non-Windows platforms. This means that when building applications targeting Windows on platforms like Linux or macOS, the resulting executable will be updated with any specified Win32 resources.

This enhancement is particularly beneficial for developers who use non-Windows development environments but need to build applications that run on Windows. It provides more flexibility and makes it easier to develop cross-platform applications.

6. SDK: Container Publishing Now Supports Azure Managed Identity

With .NET 8, Microsoft has made a significant enhancement to the SDK Container publish feature for software development services. It now supports the OAuth token exchange authentication method. This means that the Azure Container Registry (ACR) and all other registries using this method are now compatible with .NET 8.

This update optimizes the process of publishing .NET applications in an Azure Container Registry, making it more secure and efficient. Developers no longer have to manage credentials manually, as the Azure Managed Identity takes care of it.

7. Improvements in Core .NET

.NET 8

.NET 8 introduces a series of improvements in Core .NET, making it more versatile and efficient, including for mobile app software development services. Let’s explore them!

    • Serialization: The updated .NET 8 enhances serialization capabilities, offering developers a better way of handling JSON data. New types have been introduced to improve application performance and streamline coding processes.
    • Time Abstraction: .NET 8 also presents new ways of managing time in applications. This can be especially useful in scenarios where accurate time tracking is crucial.
    • UTF8 Improvements: There are several UTF8 improvements in .NET 8 aimed at enhancing the performance and efficiency of applications dealing with UTF8-encoded text.
    • Methods for Working with Randomness: System.Random Class: .NET 8 introduces new methods in the System.Random class that provides a more efficient way of generating random numbers.
    • Performance-Focused Types: The platform includes new types that are focused on improving app performance. These types can make applications more responsive and efficient.
    • Data Validation: .NET 8 offers enhanced data validation capabilities. This can help developers ensure the accuracy and integrity of data in their applications.
    • Metrics: The new version provides improved metrics that can help developers monitor the performance of their applications more effectively.
  • Cryptography: Improvements in the cryptography features of .NET 8 can provide better security for applications.
  • Networking: .NET 8 brings enhancements in networking features that can make it easier to build networked applications.
  • Stream-Based ZipFile Method: The new Stream-based ZipFile method in .NET 8 makes it more efficient to work with compressed files.

These improvements in .NET 8 make it a versatile platform for building a wide range of applications, from simple console apps to complex web applications. 

If you want to learn more about how Vanguard can provide you with IT staff augmentation services to expand your asp.NET teams or hire .NET developers, contact us today!

8. Improvements in Extension Libraries

.NET 8 brings several enhancements to its extension libraries, adding more functionality and improving performance across various application types.

A. ASP.NET Core

ASP.NET Core sees significant upgrades in .NET 8, with new features and improvements designed to streamline web development processes. The updates include enhanced routing and model binding, improved security features, and more robust support for building APIs.

B. Entity Framework

The Entity Framework in .NET 8 introduces several performance improvements, making it faster and more efficient to work with databases. It also includes enhancements in query capabilities and a more streamlined API for configuring and managing data models3.

C. Blazor

Blazor, the framework for building interactive client-side web apps, also gets a substantial upgrade. Improvements include better JavaScript interoperability, enhanced component isolation, and more efficient rendering processes. 

These enhancements make it easier to build rich, interactive web applications using C# instead of JavaScript.

9. Garbage Collector

.NET 8 also brings improvements to its garbage collector, aiming to reduce memory usage and improve performance. The garbage collector now operates more efficiently, freeing up memory resources quicker and reducing the chance of memory leaks. 

This can lead to a noticeable performance improvement, especially for applications that create a lot of temporary objects.

These upgrades in .NET 8 demonstrate Microsoft’s commitment to continually improving the platform, making it an excellent choice for developers building a wide range of applications.

Why do you need a .NET developer for your team? 

In a world where technology is constantly evolving, keeping up with the latest updates and improvements is crucial. The recent upgrades in .NET 8 are a testament to this fact, offering enhanced functionalities and improved performance. The need for a .NET developer in your team thus becomes apparent.

A .NET developer can use the power of .NET 8 to build robust, efficient, and secure applications. Whether it’s capitalizing on the improvements in Core .NET, extension libraries, or the more efficient garbage collector, a .NET developer can bring significant value to your team. 

They can help streamline processes, reduce memory usage, and ensure swift development cycles, which results in efficient software solutions.

However, finding the right .NET developer for your team can be challenging sometimes. 

That’s where Vanguard X steps in. We offer top-notch software development services, including .NET development nearshoring services. Our team of seasoned .NET developers is well-versed with the latest upgrades in .NET 8 and can help you build cutting-edge applications tailored to your specific needs.

Ready to amplify your team’s capabilities with our .NET expertise? Don’t wait! Contact Vanguard X today for superior software development services. Let’s work together to bring your vision to life!

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