Microsoft has released a preview of .NET 7, the planned next version of the company’s .NET software development platform, with the promise of improved support for cloud-native and container scenarios.
Major focus areas for .NET 7 include better support for cloud-native scenarios, along with tools that make it easier for developers to upgrade legacy projects and to work with containers. .NET 7 also promises developer experience improvements such as simplification of setup and configuration for secure authentication and authorization, and improving application startup and runtime execution.
.NET 7 Preview 1 includes annotations to APIs to support nullability, new APIs, ongoing JIT compiler optimizations, and support for additional hot reload scenarios. Published February 17, the Preview 1 can be downloaded from dotnet.microsoft.com for Windows, Linux, and MacOS. The general release of .NET 7 is expected in November. .NET 7 builds on the foundation of .NET 6, which arrived in November 2021 and includes a unified set of base libraries, runtime, SDK, and a simplified development experience.
Releases of .NET include libraries, runtime, products, and tools, with multiple teams collaborating within and outside of Microsoft. As part of the .NET 7 development effort, Microsoft plans investments in technologies including ASP.NET Core, Blazor, Entity Framework Core, WinForms, Windows Presentation Foundation, and other platforms.
Microsoft, in noting the 20th anniversary of the .NET platform on February 13, said the .NET 7 Preview would be arriving this week. With Current Release status, .NET 7 will receive free support and patches for 18 months from the release date.
Microsoft this week also released MAUI (Multi-app UI) Preview 13. The company is focused on shipping .NET MAUI support for .NET 6, with a release candidate due soon. Afterward, MAUI will be included in .NET 7. Also released this week were ASP.NET Core Preview 1 and Entity Framework 7 Preview 1.