Difference Between Asp .Net and Asp .Net Core

Difference Between Asp .Net and Asp .Net Core

01 Mar 2024
10 min read

ASP.NET vs. ASP.NET Core - What is the difference between them?

Are you getting confused between ASP .NET and ASP .NET Core? The ASP stands for Active Server Pages. ASP.Net is a server-side script engine for building web pages. The ASP.NET Core is the open-source and cross-platform version of ASP.NET. The Windows-only version of ASP.NET, which existed before ASP.NET Core, is typically just referred to as ASP.NET.

What is ASP.NET?

ASP.NET is a web framework designed and developed by Microsoft and it is used to develop websites, web applications, and web services. It provides fantastic integration of HTML, CSS, and also JavaScript.

The Component Stack  in ASP.Net

ASP.NET provides three development styles for creating web applications:

  1. Web Forms
  3. ASP.NET Web Pages

Read More: What Is The Full Form Of ASP.Net?

What is ASP.NET Core?

ASP.NET Core is a redesign and re-implementation of ASP.NET, focusing on performance and multi-platform support. It is built to support cross-platform development and offers a ready-made configuration in a cloud environment. ASP.NET Core is now built on top of .NET Core, a new modular framework that can run on multiple operating systems and has independent release cycles. ASP.NET Core allows the creation of web forms, web APIs, MVC, and web pages.

Current State of ASP.NET8

Is .NET Core and ASP.NET Core the same?

.NET Core is a general-purpose development platform, while ASP.NET Core is a framework for building web applications on top of .NET Core.

.NET Core vs ASP.NET Core

Parameters of Comparison.NET CoreASP.NET Core
Parent Platform.NET framework is the parent platform of the current multi-platform framework, .NET Core.ASP.NET is the parent framework of the ASP.NET Core.
Full NameThe full name of the .NET Core is Network Enabled Technologies Core.The abbreviation ASP.NET Core stands for Active Server Pages Network Enabled Technologies Core.
Released yearThis open-source, crossed-source platform was initially released in the year 2012, a decade after the release of ASP.NET Core.The released year of ASP.NET Core is 2002.
Latest VersionsThe latest version of .NET Core is .NET Core 3.1.The latest version of ASP.NET Core is .NET Core 8.0.
Compatible Operating SystemThe Operating Systems compatible with .NET Core are Windows, Linux, and Mac.The Operating Systems compatible with ASP.NET Core are Windows, Linux, and Mac.
Tooling and Ecosystem.NET Core has a specialized ecosystem for web development. It provides additional libraries for HTTP requests, client-side scripting, integration with front-end frameworks, and database operations.ASP.NET Core also seamlessly integrates with popular development tools like Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code, enhancing the development and debugging experience for web applications.

Migration from ASP.NET Framework to ASP.NET Core

Migration from ASP.NET Framework to ASP.NET Core

You need to consider the following factors for this migration:

  1. Assessment and Planning: Define migration goals, prioritize features, and establish a migration roadmap with clear milestones and timelines.
  2. Code Refactoring and Compatibility: Review and refactor code to use ASP.NET Core features, such as middleware, dependency injection, configuration, and routing.
  3. Dependency Management: Evaluate the availability of compatible alternatives for dependencies that may not be supported in ASP.NET Core.
  4. Configuration and Deployment: Configure deployment environments, such as IIS, Azure App Service, Docker containers, or Kubernetes clusters, to host ASP.NET Core applications.
  5. Testing and Validation: Perform unit tests, integration tests, and end-to-end tests to identify and address regressions, bugs, and performance issues introduced during the migration process.
  6. Monitoring and Optimization: Implement monitoring and logging solutions to track application performance, diagnose errors, and monitor system health in production environments.
  7. Documentation and Knowledge Transfer: Document the migration process, configuration settings, deployment procedures, and best practices for maintaining and managing ASP.NET Core applications.

Dependency Injection and Configuration Management

Built-in Dependency Injectiondependency injection is not built-in, and developers often implement manual dependency injectionIt includes a built-in, lightweight dependency injection container that provides native support for dependency injection.
Configuration ManagementConfiguration settings are accessed using the ConfigurationManager class, and settings can be defined in XML format within configuration files. Configuration settings are loaded and bound to configuration objects using the IConfiguration interface and the ConfigureServices method in the Startup class.

Cross-Platform Development and Docker Support

Cross-Platform DevelopmentApplications primarily run on Windows servers, full cross-platform support is not nativeApplications are cross-platform, supporting deployment and execution on Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems.
Docker SupportDocker support for ASP.NET applications is limitedASP.NET Core has robust support for Docker containers

Framework Ecosystem and Third-Party Libraries

Framework Ecosystema mature ecosystem with a wide range of libraries, components, and tools available.ecosystem includes a growing number of third-party libraries, frameworks, and tools specifically designed for ASP.NET Core development.
Third-Party LibrariesEntity Framework, SignalR, AutoMapper, NLog, log4net, Serilog, etc.Entity Framework Core, Hangfire, etc

Hosting and Deployment

HostingASP.NET applications are hosted on Windows-based servers, typically using Internet Information Services (IIS) as the web server.ASP.NET Core applications can be hosted on various platforms like Windows, macOS, and Linux.
Deployment methodsmanual copying of files, using deployment tools like Web Deploy (MSDeploy), or automated deployment pipelines using Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) toolsmanual deployment, using command-line tools like dotnet publish, Docker containerization, and automated deployment pipelines using CI/CD tools.

Integration with Modern Frontend Frameworks

ASP.NET Web Forms and MVC applications can integrate with frontend frameworks using client-side libraries and frameworks like jQuery, AngularJS, or React.ASP.NET Core MVC applications can integrate with modern frontend frameworks like Angular, React, or Vue.js using client-side libraries, npm packages, and build tools like Webpack or Parcel.
ASP.NET Web API can serve as the backend for frontend (BFF) services, providing RESTful APIs for frontend applications built using JavaScript frameworks like Angular, React, or Vue.js.ASP.NET Core Web API is commonly used to build backend services for modern web applications built with frontend frameworks.

Supported .NET Versions and Long-Term Support

Supported .NET VersionsThe supported .NET Framework versions for ASP.NET development include .NET Framework 4.x, with versions such as 4.7.2 being the most commonSupported versions of .NET Core include .NET Core 2.x, .NET Core 3.x, and the latest .NET 5.x and .NET 6.x releases.
Long-Term SupportASP.NET itself doesn't have an independent LTS policy, organizations should consider the LTS policies of the underlying .NET Framework versions they're using.NET 5.x and .NET 6.x are the latest LTS (Long-Term Support) releases

So, what to choose between ASP .NET Core and ASP.NET?

The decision here depends on several factors some of which are:

  1. Project Requirements: Analyze your project requirements, including platform compatibility, performance, scalability, and integration needs. ASP.NET Core is recommended for new development projects, especially those requiring cross-platform compatibility and modern development features.
  2. Legacy Applications: For existing ASP.NET applications, consider factors such as migration costs, compatibility with ASP.NET Core, and long-term support considerations. Assess the benefits of migrating to ASP.NET Core, such as improved performance, cross-platform support, and access to modern development tools and features.
  3. Long-Term Support: Consider the long-term support and lifecycle policies for ASP.NET and ASP.NET Core versions to ensure ongoing maintenance, security updates, and compatibility with future platforms and technologies.

Read More:

Future Trends and Updates: ASP.NET and ASP.NET Core Roadmap

ASP.NET Core and ASP.NET Framework are actively maintained by Microsoft. They are the widely used platforms in today's world for building web applications. After going through the above article, you must have observed that ASP.NET Core, with its modular architecture and cross-platform capabilities, will play a pivotal role in the future of web development.

Therefore, project development using ASP.NET Core is a smart choice because it offers better performance, cross-platform support, and modern features. Even we recommend you all build a strong theoretical and practical understanding of ASP.NET Core to get along with future advancements.

Read More: Why you need ASP.NET Core in your tech stack?


Q1. How do ASP .NET Core vs ASP .NET relate?

ASP.NET Core and ASP.NET are related in that they are both web application frameworks developed by Microsoft for building web applications and services using the .NET platform.

Q2. Are ASP .NET and ASP .NET Core the same?

ASP .NET and ASP .NET Core are related but not the same. They are both web application frameworks developed by Microsoft, but they have significant differences in terms of architecture, features, and platform support

Q3. Are .NET Core and .NET Framework the same?

No, .NET Core and .NET Framework are not the same. They are two distinct implementations of the .NET platform.

Q4. ASP .NET vs ASP.NET Core - what should I use?

The decision here depends on several factors like project requirements, development goals, technical considerations, etc.

Q5. What are the similarities between .NET Core and .NET Framework?

  • Language Compatibility
  • Common Language Runtime (CLR)
  • Base Class Library (BCL)
  • Entity Framework
  • Windows Integration
  • Community and Ecosystem

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About Author
Shailendra Chauhan (Microsoft MVP, Founder & CEO at Scholarhat by DotNetTricks)

Shailendra Chauhan is the Founder and CEO at ScholarHat by DotNetTricks which is a brand when it comes to e-Learning. He provides training and consultation over an array of technologies like Cloud, .NET, Angular, React, Node, Microservices, Containers and Mobile Apps development. He has been awarded Microsoft MVP 8th time in a row (2016-2023). He has changed many lives with his writings and unique training programs. He has a number of most sought-after books to his name which has helped job aspirants in cracking tough interviews with ease.
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