Get Improved Accessibility with the Latest Version of .Net Framework



Recently, Microsoft announced the pre-release of .Net Framework 4.7.1 featuring various improvements across the board. The areas slated for improvement include screen readers and high contrast situations.

Users of screen reader software rely on them to provide a useful description of what is currently being displayed on the screen. Although, there are times when user interfaces do not take this software into account making things difficult for them to be aware of a UI change occurring somewhere outside of the current focus. With the implementation of LiveRegions, a UI developer can successfully alert screen reader software of these changes occurring outside the current focus.

In fact, these LiveRegions can be designated through the AutomationProperties.LiveSetting property on the desired element. Once done, a new event can be triggered when UI changes occur. Apart from these several visual improvements has also been made in the .Net framework 4.7.1. This means several changes to UI elements have been made to improve their visibility in high contrast situations. In addition to this, Controls that have been modified include the expander control, CheckBox, RadioButton, ComboBox, and DataGrid.

Now, it is possible for elements in DataTemplates to be automatically updated. The driver for this change is to provide better support for Edit-and-Continue on Visual Studio but there is nothing that limits change to that use. Enabling this feature, users making changes to DataTemplates during debugging sessions can see the effects of their changes when the application continues.

The pre-release of .NET Framework 4.7.1 is available for Windows 7 SP1 and newer operating systems. Per Microsoft's recommendation, this pre-release should only be installed in test environments and is not supported or licensed for production use.

Over the past few years .NET Core has much been in focus. The previous year, Microsoft announced the much-anticipated release of Version 4.6.2 featuring a wide range of improvements leading to a huge digital transformation. Those improvements were:

Windows Hello 

The Windows 10 Anniversary Update was released the same day as the latest .NET Framework. Although it doesn’t show up as an installed application in “Programs and Features,” the version already includes the anniversary update. Things can be found by simply searching and clicking for features on “Turn Windows features on and off.”

Removal of Character Limits (BCL) 

Windows characters in .NET are classified based on the Unicode Standard, Version 8.0.0. All you require to do is set the policy to the enable support “Enable Win32 long paths” or “Enable NTFS long paths.”

Debugging APIs (CRL)  

With the help of null reference exceptions, developers will receive much more extensive debugging data. Next, a debugger can determine which variable in a single line of source code is null, making your job a lot easier.

TextBoxBase Controls (WPF) 

This feature is mainly considered for security purpose. According to Microsoft, “developers can now opt-in to receiving an exception when TextBoxBase controls fail to complete a copy or cut operation.” Standard copy and cut through keyboard shortcuts, as well as the context menu, will still work the same way as before in partial trust.

Always Encrypted Enhancement (SQL)  

Designed to protect sensitive data like card numbers, the .NET Framework for SQL Server contains two important enhancements for Always Encrypted centered around performance and security.

Best Match (WCF)  

When using this option, the NetNamedPipeBinding service will force you to search for the service all the way to the best matching URI, found at the requested endpoint, instead of the first matching service found

Converting to UWP

According to Developer Resources, Windows now offers capabilities to bring existing Windows desktop apps to the Universal Windows Platform. Which includes WPF as well as Windows Forms apps.

ClickOnce 

Designed long before the invention of the App Store, ClickOnce allows applications to be distributed via URLs. It can even self-update as new versions are released. The application now supports TLS 1.1 and TLS 1.2. And more importantly, ClickOnce will automatically detect which protocol to use, and no action is required to enable this feature.

Soft Keyboard Support 

Last but certainly not the least, is the soft keyboard support. In the previous versions, it wasn’t possible to utilize focus tracking without disabling WPF pen/touch gesture support. Due to which developers were forced to choose between full WPF touch support or Windows mouse promotion. This version featuring Soft keyboard support allows the use of the touch keyboard in WPF applications without disabling WPF stylus/touch support on Windows 10.

Conclusion


The above list is only the tip of the iceberg, there are numerous security and crash fixes lined up in the version 4.6.2 as well as 4.7.1 for several .Net development companies across the globe.

Nishtha Singh works as a Presales Manager with a .Net development company named TatvaSoft UK. I relish writing about various technology trends, Digital Marketing, Management, Entrepreneurship, Startups and much more. My aims to spread knowledge of the latest technologies through my online contribution.

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