.NET 7 Adds Native AOT
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Thursday, 26 May 2022

The third preview of .NET 7 has been released with support for Native AOT (Ahead-of-time) compilation. Now open source, .NET was created from a combination of .NET Framework and .NET Core, and this latest incarnation aims to improve observability, startup times, codegen, and GC regions in addition to native AOT compilation.



The Native AOT project was moved into mainline development in the previous preview of .NET, with the promise of giving developers a way to create faster, lighter apps. .NET alrady offered AOT in the form of ReadyToRun for client and server apps, and Mono AOT for mobile and WASM. The idea is that code is generated at application build time rather than runtime. What Native AOT adds is platform native pre-compilation to .NET desktop client and server, with the executable file format parsing being fully handled by the underlying operating system.

The main advantage of Native AOT is that it provides better startup time and memory usage along with smaller size on disk. Applications can start running as soon as the operating system pages in them into memory. Native AOT isn't something to be used without good reason, as it has stricter requirements than general .NET Core/5+ applications and libraries. You can't emit new code at runtime or load new .NET assemblies such as plug-in modules at runtime. It is, however, useful in environments where startup time matters.

Other improvements in this release include more support for observability through the cloud native OpenTelemetry specification. It also provides improvements to startup time with Write-Xor-Execute enabled.

.NET 7 Preview 3 is available for download now.


More Information

.NET 7 Preview 3

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 26 May 2022 )