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Guide: 7 Easy Steps For ASP.NET To .NET Core Migration

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Migrating from ASP.NET to .NET Core is an essential step in advanced web development. As technology changes rapidly, adaptability is important for maintaining a competitive edge.

In this blog, we will discuss the critical aspects of the ASP.NET to .NET Core migration journey, from understanding fundamental differences to overcoming obstacles. Join us as we cover practical steps, insights, and advantages of this transformation.

Whether you’re a .NET developer or a business looking to convert .NET Framework to .NET Core, this guide provides the expertise you need. By mastering the .NET Framework to .NET Core migration, you will succeed in the digital environment.

What is the Difference Between ASP.NET MVC and ASP.NET Core?

ASP.NET MVC and ASP.NET Core are both frameworks for building web applications, but they have some key differences:

Platform Independence:

ASP.NET MVC: Runs on the full .NET Framework and is primarily Windows-based.

ASP.NET Core: Designed to be cross-platform and can run on Windows, Linux, and macOS.

Modularity and Performance:

ASP.NET MVC: Monolithic architecture with limited modularity, which can affect performance.

ASP.NET Core: Built with a modular and lightweight architecture, resulting in better performance and scalability.

Dependency Injection:

ASP.NET MVC: Requires third-party libraries or custom implementations for dependency injection.

ASP.NET Core: Includes built-in support for dependency injection, making it easier to manage dependencies and improve testability.

API Support:

ASP.NET MVC: Primarily focused on building web applications with HTML views.

ASP.NET Core: Designed for building both web applications and APIs, with native support for building RESTful services.

Cross-Platform Development:

ASP.NET MVC: Limited cross-platform capabilities, primarily suitable for Windows-based development.

ASP.NET Core: Enables developers to build applications that can run on multiple platforms, expanding the reach of the application.

Why should you migrate from ASP.NET Framework to .NET Core?

Here are the advantages of migrating from the ASP.NET Framework to .NET Core:

1. Cross-Platform Compatibility:

Migrating to .NET Core allows your applications to run smoothly on multiple platforms like Windows, Linux, and macOS. This cross-platform compatibility broadens your application’s reach and facilitates deployment in various environments without significant changes. The ASP.NET to .NET Core migration process is crucial for achieving this level of cross-platform functionality.

2. Performance Enhancements:

.NET Core is optimized for performance, offering improved speed and scalability than the traditional ASP.NET Framework. Its modular, lightweight architecture minimizes overhead, leading to quicker response times and better overall application performance. It makes the .NET Framework to .NET Core migration highly beneficial for improving application efficiency.

3. Support for Modern Development Practices:

.NET Core supports contemporary development practices like containerization and microservices architecture. With native support for Docker containers and cloud-native development, migrating to .NET Core enables easier deployment, scalability, and maintenance of your applications.

4. Open-Source Community and Innovation:

.NET Core is open-source, supported by a dynamic community that actively contributes to its evolution. By migrating, you can use community-driven libraries, tools, and resources, promoting innovation and staying updated with current industry trends. This aspect of converting .NET Framework to .NET Core migration helps foster a more innovative development environment.

5. Long-Term Support and Compatibility:

While the traditional ASP.NET Framework still receives support, .NET Core offers a more modern, forward-thinking approach with long-term support. Migrating ensures your applications stay compatible with future updates and .NET front-end and back-end technologies, reducing obsolescence risk and providing a robust foundation for future development. Therefore, the decision to migrate the .NET Framework to .NET Core is crucial for maintaining long-term viability and applying the latest advancements in technology.

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Is .NET Core compatible with .NET Framework?

.NET Core and .NET Framework are related but not directly compatible for running binaries. While they share a common heritage and a set of standard APIs through .NET Standard, applications built specifically for .NET Core cannot run on .NET Framework without modification, and vice versa. 

However, migration strategies exist to facilitate the transition between the two platforms, including refactoring code, updating dependencies, and leveraging shared APIs through .NET Standard. 

Microsoft is prioritizing the advancement of .NET Core (now .NET 5 and later versions) as the unified platform for future development while continuing to support .NET Framework for existing applications.

How to Migrate From .NET Framework to .NET Core in 7 Steps

Migrating your applications from .NET Framework to .NET Core is a strategic move that brings modernization, improved performance, and cross-platform capabilities. Here is the complete process to migrate the .NET Framework to .NET core in 7 simple steps:

Step 1: Assess Your Application

Before starting the migration journey, it’s crucial to assess your .NET application thoroughly. It involves thoroughly examining its architecture, dependencies, and features. Determine which components are tied to the .NET Framework and need to be migrated.

During the .NET application development process, assessing your application involves evaluating its architecture, database structure, external dependencies, and third-party integrations. 

This involves compiling a comprehensive inventory of all components, such as libraries, frameworks, and custom code modules. Additionally, it’s essential to identify any platform-specific functionalities or APIs that might need adaptation for compatibility with .NET Core. 

This approach ensures a smooth transition and prevents compatibility issues during the migration to the .NET platform.

Step 2: Evaluate the Compatibility

Use tools like the .NET Portability Analyzer to assess your application’s compatibility with .NET Core. This analysis helps pinpoint potential roadblocks and areas needing adjustments during the ASP.NET to .NET Core migration.

Compatibility evaluation includes examining code dependencies, third-party libraries, and API usage. The objective is to identify features or functionalities not supported in .NET Core or those requiring modifications for seamless integration. Addressing compatibility issues early on minimizes risks and ensures a smoother .NET Framework to .NET Core migration

Step 3: Update Dependencies and Libraries

Review and upgrade dependencies, libraries, and packages to versions that are compatible with .NET Core. Ensure that third-party components meet the new framework’s standards and functionalities during the ASP.NET migration.

This process involves updating NuGet packages, libraries, and SDKs to versions that work with .NET Core. Verify compatibility with .NET Standard, which outlines a set of APIs common to all .NET implementations. Address these aspects carefully during the .NET Framework to .NET Core migration to resolve any version conflicts or deprecated APIs. By doing so, you ensure a seamless integration with .NET Core. 

Step 4: Refactor Code for .NET Core

Refactor your codebase to implement .NET Core’s APIs and features. Replace outdated APIs, adjust platform-specific code, and optimize performance where possible. This step guarantees that your application operates smoothly on the new platform.

Refactoring code involves making structural changes to adapt to .NET Core’s architecture and coding conventions. Update namespaces, use new APIs, and remove obsolete or redundant code. Optimize performance by using asynchronous programming, improved memory management, and other features offered by .NET Core.

Step 5: Convert Projects to .NET Core

Use tools like the .NET Core CLI or Visual Studio to convert your .NET Framework projects to .NET Core. Update project files, references, and configurations to conform to .NET Core standards and best practices.

Conversion to .NET Core involves modifying project files (e.g., .csproj files) to specify the .NET Core target framework and dependencies. Update package references, use the new project structure, and configure settings for cross-platform compatibility. Test the converted projects to ensure functionality and resolve any conversion errors.

Step 6: Thorough Testing and Validation

Conduct comprehensive testing, including unit tests, integration tests, and performance tests, to validate the functionality and performance of your migrated application on .NET Core. Address any issues or bugs that arise during testing.

Testing and validation are essential to ensure the stability and reliability of your migrated application. Evaluate all functionalities, including user interfaces, business logic, data access, and external integrations. Assess performance metrics like response times, resource utilization, and scalability under different loads.

Step 7: Deployment and Monitoring

Deploy your migrated application to production environments using appropriate deployment strategies for .NET Core. Implement monitoring and logging mechanisms to track performance metrics and user interactions post-migration.

Deployment encompasses preparing your application for deployment on servers, containers, or cloud platforms. Use deployment tools such as Docker, Azure DevOps, or AWS Elastic Beanstalk to facilitate efficient deployment procedures.

Implement monitoring tools such as Application Insights or Prometheus to monitor application health, detect issues, and optimize performance in real-time.

When Does Migrating from .NET Framework to .NET Core Make Sense?

Migrating from .NET Framework to .NET Core is advantageous in several scenarios:

1. Cross-Platform Requirements:

If your application needs to run on multiple platforms beyond Windows, such as Linux or macOS, migrating to .NET Core makes sense. It enables cross-platform compatibility, allowing your application to reach a wider audience and adapt to diverse environments.

2. Performance Optimization:

Applications seeking improved performance, scalability, and responsiveness find value in migrating to .NET Core. Its modular structure and performance optimizations lead to faster execution, improved resource utilization, and overall better performance.

3. Cloud-Native and Microservices Architecture:

For applications designed with cloud-native principles or based on microservices architecture, .NET Core offers native support for containerization, Docker, and cloud deployments. Migrating facilitates smoother containerization, scaling, and management of microservices-based applications.

4. Modern Development Practices:

Incorporating modern development practices like continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) and DevOps, or using cloud services, is facilitated by migrating to .NET Core. It improves integration with modern development workflows and tools, streamlining development and deployment processes.

5. Future-Proofing and Long-Term Support:

Considering Microsoft’s long-term support and strategic direction, migrating to .NET Core ensures compatibility with future updates, frameworks, and technologies. This strategy future-proofs applications, reduces maintenance efforts, and establishes a robust foundation for ongoing development and innovation.

Common Challenges of .NET Framework to .NET Core Migration

Migrating from .NET Framework to .NET Core presents several challenges that developers and organizations need to address:

Compatibility Issues: 

Not every library, framework, or third-party component used in .NET Framework applications is compatible with .NET Core. This necessitates evaluating and revising dependencies to guarantee alignment with the new platform.

API Differences:

.NET Core introduces new APIs and features while deprecating or changing existing ones from the .NET Framework. Developers need to refactor code to use the equivalent APIs in .NET Core, which may require significant changes in some cases.

Platform-Specific Code: 

Applications built on the .NET Framework often contain platform-specific code and dependencies that are not compatible with .NET Core’s cross-platform nature. Adapting or replacing such code is necessary for successful migration.

Tooling and Ecosystem: 

The tooling and ecosystem surrounding .NET Core, comprising development tools, libraries, and deployment practices, might vary from those employed in .NET Framework development. Teams must familiarize themselves with these differences and adjust their workflows accordingly.

Performance Tuning: 

While .NET Core offers performance benefits over .NET Framework, optimizing applications for performance on the new platform requires tuning and possibly rearchitecting parts of the codebase.

Legacy Support: 

Organizations migrating from .NET Framework may have legacy systems, components, or dependencies that are not readily transferable to .NET Core. Balancing compatibility with these legacy systems while migrating to the new platform poses a complex challenge.

Testing and Validation: 

Testing and validation play pivotal roles throughout the migration process to .NET Core. It’s essential to conduct thorough testing to verify that the application operates accurately and efficiently on the new platform. It encompasses testing for compatibility, functionality, performance, and security measures.


In conclusion, transitioning from ASP.NET to .NET Core presents a strategic opportunity for modernizing your applications, improving performance, and implementing cross-platform capabilities. By adhering to the detailed 7-step process in this guide, you can smoothly navigate the ASP.NET to .NET Core migration and use the advantages of .NET Core. Each stage, from evaluating your application to strict testing and deployment, is crucial for achieving a successful transition. Start the future of .NET development with confidence, ensuring your competitiveness in online settings while undertaking the journey to convert .NET Framework to .NET Core.

Need Help with .NET Framework to .NET Core Migration?

Migrating your applications from .NET Framework to .NET Core is a significant endeavor that demands expertise and careful planning. If you seek guidance, support, or professional aid throughout this migration process, Clickysoft, the best  .NET development company, stands ready to assist.

With years of experience in .NET application development and a team of skilled developers, Clickysoft offers comprehensive migration services tailored to your specific needs. Whether you need assistance with assessing compatibility, updating dependencies, refactoring code, or deploying on .NET Core, we have the expertise and resources to ensure a successful migration.

Overcome migration challenges with ease by teaming up with Clickysoft today. Discuss how to maximize the capabilities of .NET Core for your applications.


What key steps would you take to migrate from ASP.NET to ASP.NET Core?

Vital tasks for migrating from ASP.NET to ASP.NET Core include assessing your application, evaluating compatibility, updating dependencies, refactoring code, converting projects, conducting thorough testing, and deploying with monitoring.

Is ASP.NET still supported?

Yes, ASP.NET is still supported, but Microsoft’s focus has shifted to advancing .NET Core (now .NET 6 and later versions) as the unified platform for future development.

Is .NET 6 considered .NET Core?

No, .NET 6 is distinct from .NET Core. .NET 6 is the next major release following .NET Core and .NET Framework, bringing together the entire .NET platform under a single framework.

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