.NET
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8K
5K
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.NET vs Rails: What are the differences?

Developers describe .NET as "A free, cross-platform, open source developer platform for building many different types of applications". .NET is a general purpose development platform. With .NET, you can use multiple languages, editors, and libraries to build native applications for web, mobile, desktop, gaming, and IoT for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and more. On the other hand, Rails is detailed as "Web development that doesn't hurt". Rails is a web-application framework that includes everything needed to create database-backed web applications according to the Model-View-Controller (MVC) pattern.

.NET and Rails belong to "Frameworks (Full Stack)" category of the tech stack.

"Tight integration with visual studio", "Stable code" and "Great community" are the key factors why developers consider .NET; whereas "Rapid development", "Great gems" and "Great community" are the primary reasons why Rails is favored.

.NET and Rails are both open source tools. Rails with 43.6K GitHub stars and 17.5K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than .NET with 11.1K GitHub stars and 2.4K GitHub forks.

Airbnb, Twitter, and Instacart are some of the popular companies that use Rails, whereas .NET is used by Stack Exchange, Microsoft, and Starbucks. Rails has a broader approval, being mentioned in 2321 company stacks & 796 developers stacks; compared to .NET, which is listed in 1566 company stacks and 239 developer stacks.

What is .NET?

.NET is a general purpose development platform. With .NET, you can use multiple languages, editors, and libraries to build native applications for web, mobile, desktop, gaming, and IoT for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and more.

What is Rails?

Rails is a web-application framework that includes everything needed to create database-backed web applications according to the Model-View-Controller (MVC) pattern.

Want advice about which of these to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

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What are some alternatives to .NET and Rails?
Node.js
Node.js uses an event-driven, non-blocking I/O model that makes it lightweight and efficient, perfect for data-intensive real-time applications that run across distributed devices.
ASP.NET
.NET is a developer platform made up of tools, programming languages, and libraries for building many different types of applications.
Django
Django is a high-level Python Web framework that encourages rapid development and clean, pragmatic design.
Laravel
It is a web application framework with expressive, elegant syntax. It attempts to take the pain out of development by easing common tasks used in the majority of web projects, such as authentication, routing, sessions, and caching.
Android SDK
Android provides a rich application framework that allows you to build innovative apps and games for mobile devices in a Java language environment.
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Decisions about .NET and Rails
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How developers use .NET and Rails
Avatar of StackShare
StackShare uses RailsRails

The first live version of Leanstack was actually a WordPress site. There wasn’t a whole lot going on at first. We had static pages with static content that needed to be updated manually. Then came the concept of user-generated content and we made the switch to a full on Rails app in November of last year. Nick had a lot of experience with Rails so that made the decision pretty easy. But I had also played around with Rails previously and was comfortable working with it. I also knew I’d need to hire engineers with a lot more experience building web apps than I do, so I wanted to go with a language and framework other people would have experience with. Also, the sheer number of gems and tools available for Rails is pretty amazing (shout to RubyToolbox ).

I don’t see us ever having to move away from Rails really, but I could be wrong. Leanstack was built in Rails 3. For StackShare we decided to upgrade to Rails 4. Biggest issue with that has been caching. DHH decided to remove the standard page and action caching in favor of key-based caching (source)[http://edgeguides.rubyonrails.org/caching_with_rails.html#page-caching]. Probably a good thing from a framework-perspective. But pretty shitty to have to learn about that after testing out your new app and realizing nothing is cached anymore :( We’ll need to spend some more time implementing "Russian Doll Caching", but for now we’ve got a random mixture of fragment and action caching (usually one or the other) based on which pages are most popular.

Avatar of Karma
Karma uses RailsRails

We use Rails for webpages and projects, not for backend services. Actually if you click through our website, you won't notice it but you're clicking though, I think, seven or eight different Rails projects. We tie those all together with a front-end library that we wrote, which basically makes sure that you have a consistent experience over all these different Rails apps.

It's a gem, we call it Karmeleon. It's not a gem that we released. It's an internal gem. Basically what it does is it makes sure that we have a consistent layout across multiple Rails apps. Then we can share stuff like a menu bar or footer or that kind of stuff.

So if we start a new front end project it's always a Rails application. We pull in the Karmeleon gem with all our styling stuff and then basically the application is almost ready to be deployed. That would be an empty page, but you would still have top bar, footer, you have some custom components that you can immediately use. So it kind of bootstraps our entire project to be a front end project.

Avatar of Instacart
Instacart uses RailsRails

Web has always been in Rails from the beginning, so we used Redis for caching our items, which we had, from the beginning. Rails is kind of what we were comfortable with, and we knew we wanted the front end to be really, really snappy, so we de-normalized all the item attributes into Redis, and that's how it got served out.

Avatar of Tim Lucas
Tim Lucas uses RailsRails

Rails 5 (beta 3) provided a nice structure for rendering responses, linking to front-end assets (compiled previously via Webpack), handling sessions w/ tailor made login links via an email button/token, background jobs, and creating an admin behind basic auth to allow managing of users and purchases.

Avatar of Brillium, Inc.
Brillium, Inc. uses .NET.NET

Microsoft has done an incredible job of keeping the .NET Framework powerful and stable. It is well designed and keeps getting more robust with each release. It isn't the most popular technology in this space, but I think a good case can be made to use .NET in many new projects.

Avatar of Ngakkan Nyaagu
Ngakkan Nyaagu uses RailsRails

For this project rails was ideal due to new features introduced in Rails 5 that allowed us to build a lightweight "API only" project. Developer familiarity and the ability to rapidly iterate, as well as providing an accessible testing framework were additional factors.

Avatar of Foundbite
Foundbite uses .NET.NET

As we started on Windows Phone we use C# and .NET for most of our apps and sites. Being a small team of 2, using .NET enables us to work on each part of the service without having to switch to different languages.

Avatar of Daniel Kovacs
Daniel Kovacs uses .NET.NET

I use .NET alongside with C# since my university studies, and I really enjoy it. Especially .NET Core, which is the best thing that happened to Microsoft since... ever.

Avatar of Yue Wang
Yue Wang uses .NET.NET

Server side development language and frameworks: ASP.Net MVC 4, Asp.Net WebApi 2, Razor View engine, Moq, Entity Frameworks, etc.

Avatar of Twincore Systems
Twincore Systems uses .NET.NET

TwinCore creates modern web and cloud applications based on .NET TwinCore supports legacy .NET applications

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