The CLR and the Base Class Libraries

At the core of the .NET framework sits the Common Language Runtime, which executes managed code and provides support for any .NET code like VB.NET, J# and of course C# – all of which are comiled into Common Intermidiate Language – previously known as Microsoft Intermidiate Language – CIL/MSIL.

The CLR wraps around the Common Type System and the Common Language Specification – which are basically a specification that stipulates what code must conform to in order to be executed in the CLR

On top of the CLR sits the .NET base class libraries, which provide support for lower level tasks like thread handling, I/O, grpahical rendering and interaction with hardware devices. Best known of these libraries is the mscorlib.dll

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