Parallel Programming and the .NET Framework 4.0

Stephen Toub - MSFT

Last week, the VP of the Developer Division at Microsoft announced the next version of Visual Studio and the .NET Framework: Visual Studio 2010 and the .NET Framework 4.0.  In line with that, the folks at Channel 9 have been posting videos left and right about a bunch of the new Visual Studio features, and there should be a plethora of interesting information and discussions flowing at the PDC in a few weeks.  For those of you that are planning to attend the PDC, you’ve likely reviewed the list of announced sessions and found a whole bunch on parallelism, including the following:

Parallel Programming for Managed Developers with the
Next Version of Microsoft Visual Studio

Come learn how the next version of Visual Studio and the Microsoft .NET Framework can help you write better performing and more scalable applications. We take a tour of new .NET APIs, including the Task Parallel Library (TPL) and Parallel LINQ (PLINQ). We also introduce new features in the debugger that help you quickly identify concurrency issues and visualize the internal state of your application.

Some phrases are likely jumping out at you by this point.  “Task Parallel Library”. “PLINQ”. “The Next Version”. So…

Parallel Extensions will indeed be a part of the .NET Framework 4.0.  Not only will it be a part of it, it will be a core part of it.  In Soma’s blog post announcing the next wave, he cites the following as key focuses for the release:

•    Significantly improve the core pillars of the developer experience
•    Support for the latest platforms spanning the client, web, server, services and devices
•    Targeted and simplified developer experiences for different application types

Parallelism is relevant to all of these.  So in the .NET Framework 4.0, you’ll find the Task Parallel Library at the heart of the Framework in mscorlib.dll.  You’ll find PLINQ sitting in System.Core.dll right alongside LINQ-to-Objects.  And you’ll find new coordination and synchronization data types spread across various DLLs, enabling not only your applications, but the .NET Framework itself.

We’ll be diving into more details at the PDC, and we hope you’ll join us for that.  In the meantime, you can learn more about our plans for Visual Studio 2010 and the .NET Framework 4.0 in the most recent issue of MSDN Magazine:
Coding Tools: Improved Support For Parallelism In The Next Version Of Visual Studio.



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