Visual Studio 2022 is now generally available, and it’s the first 64-bit version
Microsoft has announced that both Visual Studio 2022 and .NET 6 have reached general availability today. These updated tools brings new capabilities for developers meant to speed up the development process, as well as create better apps.
For starters, Visual Studio 2022 is the first major update to Visual Studio in over two years, following Visual Studio 2019. The latest release comes with one very significant change: Visual Studio itself is now a 64-bit application. This is big news for developers, as VIsual Studio can now access all of the computer’s memory, making it much faster to compile and work with large and complex projects. Indeed, Visual Studio is dropping support for 32-bit machines, but presumably not many developers are using 32-bit PCs anymore.
Aside from that, Visual Studio comes with a huge list of news, including new versions of C++, .NET 6, and C#10. There are also improvements to the editor such as a new multi-caret copy-and-pasting experience, new IntelliCode features such as whole line completions in C# projects, and much, much more. One thing that’s worth noting is that the extensions platform in Visual Studio 2022 has some breaking changes, so existing extensions for VS2019 won’t work with the new version unless they’re updated. On the visual side, Microsoft has changed the icons across the app and a new Cascadia Code font is now used in the app. You can read the release notes for a more thorough description of everything that’s new.
As for .NET 6, the list of news is also extensive. Performance has been significantly improved across the board, with particularly big improvements in file I/O. APIs have been update or introduced, including improved performance with JSON APIs and new minimal APIs in ASP.NET Core, making it easier to get started and improving performance with HTTP services. This release also adds support for HTTP/3 in ASP.NET core, as well as OpenSSL 3 for enhanced security.
One .NET 6 feature that isn’t available at launch is the Multi-platform App UI (MAUI), which allows developers to write code for a single app that looks modern on both desktop and mobile platforms. Microsoft didn’t say when this capability will be available, however.
.NET 6 is the latest long-term support release of the platform, meaning it will be supported for the next three years, and it’s a unified platform for all types of apps, whether it’s mobile, desktop, cloud, web, and more. It replaces both .NET 5 and .NET Core 3.1, and Microsoft is urging developers to migrate their apps from those older platforms. However, .NET 6 is only supported in Visual Studio 2022 for Windows and Mac, so if you’re using an older version, you won’t be able to use the new platform.
You can download Visual Studio 2022 from the official website, and head here to download .NET 6.