A condensed introduction to the Microsoft .NET Framework, this book aims to help programmers make the transition from traditional Windows programming into the world of .NET programming. The Microsoft .NET Framework includes the Common Language Runtime (CLR) and a set of base classes that radically simplify the development of large-scale applications and services. This book examines the CLR in detail, so that you can put its new features to good use. The book also illustrates how language integration really works and guides you through component and enterprise development using the .NET Framework. In addition, it introduces you to four key .NET technologies: Data (ADO.NET) and XML, Web Services, Web Forms (ASP.NET), and Windows Forms.

We used Beta 2 of the .NET SDK to prepare this manuscript and to develop all the examples and figures in this book. While we have done our best to ensure that the technical content of this book is up-to-date, it is possible that some items have changed slightly from the time of writing. By the time this book gets to you, there may be a newer release. Also, check,, and the O’Reilly web page for this book,, regularly.


While this book is for any person interested in learning about the Microsoft .NET Framework, it targets seasoned developers with experience in building Windows applications with Visual Studio 6 and the Visual Basic and Visual C++ languages. Java™ and C/C++ developers will also be well prepared for the material presented here. To gain the most from this book, you should have experience in object-oriented, component, enterprise, and web application development. COM programming experience is a plus.

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