.NET Framework is a software framework developed by Microsoft that runs primarily on Microsoft Windows. It is open source and Microsoft with .NET 2015 is extending it to run on Mac OS platforms and Linux. It includes a large class library known as Framework Class Library and provides language interoperability across several programming languages. Programs written for .NET Framework execute in a software environment, known as Common Language Runtime, an application virtual machine that provides services such as security, memory management, and exception handling. FCL and CLR together constitute .NET Framework. FCL provides user interface, data access, database connectivity, cryptography, web application development, numeric algorithms, and network communications. Programmers produce software by combining their own source code with .NET Framework and other libraries. .NET Framework is intended to be used by most new applications created for Windows platform. Microsoft also produces an integrated development environment largely for .NET software called Visual Studio.
.NET Popularity Over Time