Microsoft has announced the release of .NET Core 3.0 Release Candidate (RC1), a near-final version of its portable software platform. The software giant expects to deliver the final version of .NET Core 3 next week at its .NET Conf virtual event.
“We’ve focused on polishing .NET Core 3.0 for a final release,” Microsoft’s Richard Lander explains. “We are now getting very, very close.”
If you’ve been following .NET Core 3 development, you know that Microsoft didn’t originally plan to ship an RC version; instead, the earlier Preview 9 release was expected to be the last major milestone before the final version. But Microsoft added the RC1 release to sync up with Visual Studio 2019 16.3 Preview 4 and Visual Studio for Mac 8.3, both of which were just released as well.
“It is critical that the .NET Core SDK version that is part of any Visual Studio release includes the same toolset in order to deliver a compatible experience in all scenarios,” Lander noted, adding that the team should have seen this coming.
Regardless, .NET Core 3.0 RC1 is fully supported by Microsoft and can be used in production. Microsoft originally announced .NET Core 3.0 this past May at Build 2019, and the biggest change is support for Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), Windows Forms, and Universal Windows Platform (UWP) applications on Windows. Microsoft also revealed at the time that its next release, .NET 5.0, will be based on .NET Core and will replace the legacy .NET platform. (This seems similar to when NT 5.0 “became” Windows and was renamed to Windows 2000.)