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Pro C# 2010 and the .NET 4 Platform, Fifth Edition by Andrew Troelsen

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1.5. An Overview of .NET Assemblies

Regardless of which .NET language you choose to program with, understand that despite the fact that .NET binaries take the same file extension as COM servers and unmanaged Windows binaries (*.dll or *.exe), they have absolutely no internal similarities. For example, *.dll .NET binaries do not export methods to facilitate communications with the COM runtime (given that .NET is not COM). Furthermore, .NET binaries are not described using COM type libraries and are not registered into the system registry. Perhaps most important, .NET binaries do not contain platform-specific instructions, but rather platform-agnostic Intermediate Language (IL) and type metadata. Figure 1-3 shows the big picture of the story thus ...

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