Microsoft .NET 7 support ends in May

  • 03/April/2024
  • Paul Krill

.NET 7, a version Microsoft’s open-source, cross-platform application framework that was released in November 2022, will reach its end of support on May 14, 2024, Microsoft said on March 27.

After May 14, Microsoft will no longer provide servicing updates including technical support or security fixes. Developers will need to update to .NET 8, released in November 2023, to continue to receive support. .NET 7 is a Standard Term Support release, which receives support for 18 months. It is supported by Microsoft on multiple operating systems, including Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, and iOS.

Microsoft stressed that applications using .NET 7 will continue to run after support ends, but users may not be able to access technical support for .NET 7 applications. The company recommends .NET application users reach out to the software developer or vendor to find out if an updated version is available that uses .NET 8. Applications can be upgraded to .NET 8 by changing the TargetFramework property in the project file to net8.0. Development and hosting environments also will need to be updated. Detailed instructions for updating .NET can be found here.


For Visual Studio, the .NET component in the IDE will be changed to out of support and optional, starting with the June 2024 servicing update for Visual Studio 2022 17.6 and Visual Studio 2022 17.5. Developers must use the .NET 8 SDK to build .NET 6 or .NET 8 components to stay supported. The “remove out of support” component option can be used to remove .NET 7 from existing Visual Studio installations.

Unlike .NET 7, .NET 6, released in November 2021, has Long Term Support (LTS) status, taking it to November of this year. .NET 8 also has Long Term Support status.

Java development tool budget

  • 07/March/2024
  • Paul krill

First, Java is here to stay: 60% of respondents say their companies plan to add Java developers in the coming year, and 42% plan to increase their Java development tool budget. These investments in tools and talent are testament to Java's role as the stable backbone of enterprise applications.

Most respondents to a recent survey on Java productivity said their companies plan to add Java developers this year, while a bit less than half plan to increase their Java tool budget.

These findings were included the 2024 Java Productivity Report from development tools provider Perforce Software, released March 5. Overall, the survey found that investments in Java tools and talent were on the rise. Sixty percent of respondents said their companies planned to add Java developers this year and only 13% said their companies did not (27% were unsure). Developer tool budgets look to be holding steady, with 42% planning to increase their Java tools budget.

The report featured responses from 440 Java users worldwide, with a mix of Perforce customers and non-customers. Respondents were spread across 72 countries, with 27% from the United States. Polling was conducted from November 2023 to January 2024. Most respondents were either Java developers or Java architects.


Regarding Java usage trends, 11% said they had already upgraded to the most recent version of standard Java, Java 21, while 24% said they were using Java 8 and 18% said they were using Java 11. Given that Oracle discontinued Premier-level support for Java 8 in March 2022, the Java 8 figure implies that companies are getting support from third-party vendors such as Amazon, Azul, and OpenLogic, Perforce said.


Perforce expects adoption of Java 21 to increase as Oracle accelerates the frequency of long-term support JDK releases from every three years to every two years.

Other findings in the 2024 Java Developer Productivity Report:

  • Amazon Web Services was the most popular cloud provider at 31%, followed by Microsoft Azure at 18%. The share of respondents who said they do not use any cloud providers fell to 13% from 21% last year.
  • JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA topped the list of preferred IDEs, with 41% of respondents using it. Eclipse took second place with 23%. Microsoft Visual Studio Code took third with 19%.
  • 36% said they use Apache Tomcat as their main application server, while 15% said they use JBoss/Wildfly.

Astro boosts HTML file control, i18n support

  • 12/February/2024
  • Paul krill

Another update to the Astro web framework for content-driven websites has arrived.

Astro 4.3 web framework improves control over HTML file output and adds experimental domain support for international locations.

Only weeks since the release of Astro 4.2, Astro 4.3 brings more control over HTML file output and adds experimental domain support for different international (i18n) locales.

More control over HTML file output is enabled by a new build.format option, called preserve, that offers more control over the resulting HTML files in a production build. This option will preserve file system structure and ensure it is mirrored over to production. The feature offers better compatibility with some web servers with strict requirements on structuring of files.


Astro 4.3 also adds an experimental domains i18n configuration, for specifying different domains or subdomains for different supported locales. Developers, for example, now could use for an English site, for a French site, and for a Spanish site. Developers can enable the experimental flag, i18nDomains, and map locales to domains using in the astro.config.mjs file.

In other improvements in Astro 4.3, the framework adds a ComponentProps type export from Astro/types to get the props type of an Astro component. This type export allows developers to reference the Props accepted by another component, even if that component does not export the Props type directly.

Finally, the standard ![](img.png) now can be used in Markdown files for images colocated in the same folder, with no relative specifier required. Astro 4.3 release notes can be found on GitHub.

Visual Studio taps more GitHub Copilot capabilities

  • 14/January/2024
  • Paul Krill

Microsoft has released a second preview of Visual Studio 2022 17.10, featuring GitHub Copilot integrations for generating pull request descriptions and explaining commits.

Introduced March 12, Visual Studio 2022 17.10 Preview 2 can be downloaded from the Visual Studio website. This planned update to Microsoft’s flagship IDE enables developers to generate a first draft of a pull request description driven by GitHub Copilot analysis of all changes in a pull request. Developers will get assistance in providing context to colleagues for their reviews and an added benefit of ensuring they are including the right changes in a pull request, Microsoft said.

Also, a GitHub Copilot-powered explain feature has been added to the Commit Details window to make it easier for developers to understand the contents of each commit. Developers also can view GitHub and Azure DevOps pull request comments directly in a working file in Visual Studio. Developers will need a GitHub Copilot subscription to enable the Copilot-powered features. In addition to generating pull request descriptions and explaining commits, GitHub Copilot can generate Git commit messages. This feature was introduced in Visual Studio 2022 17.10 Preview 1.


For diagnostics and debugging, the .NET Counter profiler in Visual Studio introduces two new metrics. UpDown enables real-time tracking of values with both incremental and decremental changes, while ObservableCounter automatically manages aggregated totals and offers customizable callback delegates for precise control. In addition, a filter flyout control feature allows developers to filter data points based on tags. This adjusts both summary and swimlane views according to the applied combinations, helping to streamline the monitoring of dynamic values in projects.


Other new features in Visual Studio 2022 17.10 Preview 2:

  • Readability has been improved with new text formatting options in the editor. Italics as well as strikethrough and underline options have been brought to available options for configuring the way code text is displayed.
  • Substantial performance improvements have been made to the WinForms out-of-process designer. Performance gains have been made for scenarios that trigger server process restart and designer reload.
  • Support has been added for SQL Server Developer Tools on ARM64 devices. Features such as SQL Projects, schema compare, and query editor now are available.
  • The Managed Memory window insights tab now supports Garbage Collection Insights, providing a deeper understanding of application performance.

Visual Studio 2022 17.10 Preview 2 follows an initial preview released in February, around the same time as the release of Visual Studio 2022 17.9.

Google Cloud certifications nab highest-paying IT jobs.

  • 04/December/2023
  • Paul Krill

Skillsoft survey finds four Google Cloud certifications among the top 10 highest-paying, with cloud computing and cybersecurity certifications generally drawing higher salaries.

When it comes to the highest paid US jobs pertaining to IT certifications, two Google Cloud certifications took the top spot in a recent survey, with annual salaries in the $200,000 range.

In IT trainer Skillsoft’s 20 top-paying IT certifications, published November 14, the Google Cloud – Professional Cloud Architect certification topped the list, with an average annual salary of $200,960. This certification ranked third last year, with an average salary of $161,371. This certification validates the holder’s proficiency in crafting and implementing secure, scalable, and reliable cloud solutions using Google Cloud technologies.

The Skillsoft report said that developments in cloud computing, particularly the increased reliance on cloud computing and the maturation of cloud computing technology, have led many in the industry to entrust providers like Google Cloud with their data. This has made cloud architects increasingly necessary, Skillsoft said.


How to choose a cloud machine learning platform

In second place was the Google Cloud – Professional Data Engineer certification, with an average annual salary of $193,621. This certification validates an individual’s capability to construct and manage effective data processing systems using the Google Cloud Platform. It affirms an ability to create secure, scalable, and reliable data solutions.

Other Google Cloud certifications placed seventh and eighth on the list, which was dominated by cloud-related certifications. Seven of the 20 top-paying certifications pertained to Amazon Web Services (AWS). Skillsoft’s list was compiled from a survey of thousands of IT professionals including more than 1,900 professionals in the US, conducted between May and September of 2023.

Skillsoft’s 20 highest-paying IT certifications, along with their average annual salaries:

  1. Google Cloud–Professional Cloud Architect, $200,960
  2. Google Cloud–Professional Data Engineer, $193,621
  3. Project Management Institute (PMI) Project Management Professional, $176,116
  4. AWS Certified Solutions Architect–Professional, $174,137
  5. ISACA Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), $167,396
  6. AWS Certified Security–Specialty, $166,449
  7. Google Cloud Professional–Database Engineer, $163,193
  8. Google Cloud Associate–Cloud Engineer, $161,075
  9. AWS Certified Solutions Architect–Associate, $160,052
  10. ISC2 Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), $156,669
  11. ISACA's Certified Information Systems Auditor, $154,500
  12. AWS Certified Advanced Networking–Specialty, $153,031
  13. AWS Certified DevOps Engineer–Professional, $150,546
  14. Certified Blockchain Security Professional (CBSP), $129,185
  15. Cisco Certified Network Association (CCNA), $128,651
  16. AWS Certified Developer–Associate, $127,259
  17.  AWS Certified Database–Specialty,$122,677
  18. CompTIA's Security+, $121,653
  19. CompTIA's CySA+, or Cybersecurity Analyst, $121,043
  20. Microsoft’s Azure Administrator Associate, $120,622


Amazon Bedrock - Generative AI on AWS

  • 17/October/2023
  • Paul Krill

Generative AI on AWS
From startups to enterprises, organizations trust AWS to innovate with generative artificial intelligence (AI). With enterprise-grade security and privacy, access to industry-leading foundation models, and generative AI-powered applications, AWS makes it easy to build and scale generative AI, built for your data, your use cases and your customers.

Choose the right model for your use case
Choose from a wide selection of industry leading foundation models from Amazon, AI21 Labs, Anthropic, Cohere, Meta, and Stability AI in Amazon Bedrock.

Customize foundation models with your own data to build more differentiated, personalized experiences.

Security and privacy from day one
With security and privacy built-in, your data remains protected and private when you customize foundation models.

Learn more about responsible generative AI practices and what can be done to reduce the risks.

Scale generative AI with the most cost-effective infrastructure
Get the best price performance for generative AI with infrastructure powered by AWS Trainium, AWS Inferentia, and NVIDIA GPUs.

Use cases for foundation models range from search to content creation to drug discovery, AWS said. An Amazon CodeWhisperer capability, due soon, will provide AI-powered code suggestions. Specific benefits AWS cited for Amazon Bedrock include:

  • Choice of leading foundation models.
  • Model customization with a user’s data.
  • Native support for RAG (Retrieval-Augmented Generation) to extend the power of foundation models with proprietary data.
  • Data security and compliance certifications.

Amazon Bedrock lets customers experiment with a variety of foundation models and customize them privately with proprietary data, AWS said. The cloud provider noted that the service includes managed agents that execute complex business tasks, ranging from booking travel and processing insurance claims to managing inventory, with no need to write code.