.Net Interview Questions and Answers – Part 4

31. What is a Manifest?
An assembly manifest contains all the metadata needed to specify the assembly’s version requirements and security identity, and all metadata needed to define the scope of the assembly and resolve references to resources and classes. The assembly manifest can be stored in either a PE (Portable Executable) file (an .exe or .dll) with Microsoft intermediate language (MSIL) code or in a standalone PE (Portable Executable) file that contains only assembly manifest information. The following table shows the information contained in the assembly manifest. The first four items the assembly name, version number, culture, and strong name information make up the assembly’s identity.
Assembly name: A text string specifying the assembly’s name.
Version number: A major and minor version number, and a revision and build number. The common language runtime uses these numbers to enforce version policy.
Culture: Information on the culture or language the assembly supports. This information should be used only to designate an assembly as a satellite assembly containing culture- or language-specific information. (An assembly with culture information is automatically assumed to be a satellite assembly.) Strong name information: The public key from the publisher if the assembly has been given a strong name.
List of all files in the assembly:
A hash of each file contained in the assembly and a file name. Note that all files that make up the assembly must be in the same directory as the file containing the assembly manifest.
Type reference information: Information used by the runtime to map a type reference to the file that contains its declaration and implementation. This is used for types that are exported from the assembly.
Information on referenced assemblies: A list of other assemblies that are statically referenced by the assembly. Each reference includes the dependent assembly’s name, assembly metadata (version, culture, operating system, and so on), and public key, if the assembly is strong named.

32. What is the difference between “using System.Data;” and directly adding the reference from “Add References Dialog Box”?
When u compile a program using command line, u add the references using /r switch. When you compile a program using Visual Studio, it adds those references to our assembly, which are added using “Add Reference” dialog box. While “using” statement facilitates us to use classes without using their fully qualified names.
For example: if u have added a reference to “System.Data.SqlClient” using “Add Reference” dialog box then u can use SqlConnection class like this:
But if u add a “using System.Data.SqlClient” statement at the start of ur code then u can directly use SqlConnection class. On the other hand if u add a reference using “using System.Data.SqlClient” statement, but don’t add it using “Add Reference” dialog box, Visual Studio will give error message while we compile the program.

33. What is a Metadata?
Metadata is information about a PE. In COM, metadata is communicated through non-standardized type libraries.
In .NET, this data is contained in the header portion of a COFF-compliant PE and follows certain guidelines; it contains information such as the assembly’s name, version, language (spoken, not computer , culture), what external types are referenced, what internal types are exposed, methods, properties, classes, and much more.
The CLR uses metadata for a number of specific purposes. Security is managed through a public key in the PE’s header.
Information about classes, modules, and so forth allows the CLR to know in advance what structures are necessary. The class loader component of the CLR uses metadata to locate specific classes within assemblies, either locally or across networks.
Just-in-time (JIT) compilers use the metadata to turn IL into executable code.
Other programs take advantage of metadata as well.
A common example is placing a Microsoft Word document on a Windows 2000 desktop. If the document file has completed comments, author, title, or other Properties metadata, the text is displayed as a tool tip when a user hovers the mouse over the document on the desktop. You can use the Ildasm.exe utility to view the metadata in a PE. Literally, this tool is an IL disassemble.

34. What is “Common Type System” (CTS)?
CTS defines all of the basic types that can be used in the .NET Framework and the operations performed on those type. All this time we have been talking about language interoperability, and .NET Class Framework. None of this is possible without all the language sharing the same data types. What this means is that an int should mean the same in VB, VC++, C# and all other .NET compliant languages. This is achieved through introduction of Common Type System (CTS).

35. What is “Common Language Specification” (CLS)?
CLS is the collection of the rules and constraints that every language (that seeks to achieve .NET compatibility) must follow. It is a subsection of CTS and it specifies how it shares and extends one another libraries.

36. What is “Common Language Runtime” (CLR)?
CLR is .NET equivalent of Java Virtual Machine (JVM). It is the runtime that converts a MSIL code into the host machine language code, which is then executed appropriately. The CLR is the execution engine for .NET Framework applications. It provides a number of services, including:
– Code management (loading and execution)
– Application memory isolation
– Verification of type safety
– Conversion of IL to native code.
– Access to metadata (enhanced type information)
– Managing memory for managed objects
– Enforcement of code access security
– Exception handling, including cross-language exceptions
– Interoperation between managed code, COM objects, and pre-existing DLL’s (unmanaged code and data)
– Automation of object layout
– Support for developer services (profiling, debugging, and so on).

37. What is the difference between a namespace and assembly name?
A namespace is a logical naming scheme for types in which a simple type name, such as MyType, is preceded with a dot-separated hierarchical name. Such a naming scheme is completely under control of the developer. For example, types MyOffice.FileAccess.A and MyOffice.FileAccess.B might be logically expected to have functionally related to file access. The .NET Framework uses a hierarchical naming scheme for grouping types into logical categories of related functionality, such as the ASP.NET application framework, or remoting functionality. Design tools can make use of namespaces to make it easier for developers to browse and reference types in their code. The concept of a namespace is not related to that of an assembly. A single assembly may contain types whose hierarchical names have different namespace roots, and a logical namespace root may span multiple assemblies. In the .NET Framework, a namespace is a logical design-time naming convenience, whereas an assembly establishes the name scope for types at run time.

38. What’s a Windows process?
It’s an application that’s running and had been allocated memory.

39. What’s typical about a Windows process in regards to memory allocation?
Each process is allocated its own block of available RAM space, no process can access another process’ code or data. If the process crashes, it dies alone without taking the entire OS or a bunch of other applications down.

40. Explain what relationship is between a Process, Application Domain, and Application?
Each process is allocated its own block of available RAM space, no process can access another process’ code or data. If the process crashes, it dies alone without taking the entire OS or a bunch of other applications down. A process is an instance of a running application. An application is an executable on the hard drive or network. There can be numerous processes launched of the same application (5 copies of Word running), but 1 process can run just 1 application.

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