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Hosting the Common Language Runtime

For applications that were written by using the .NET Framework, hosting the common language runtime is completely transparent. If you compile your managed code as an .exe assembly, the runtime is started automatically by mscoree.dll when the .exe is run. However, unmanaged applications can also benefit from hosting the common language runtime. The runtime provides a framework for extending applications such as Microsoft Internet Information Services and Microsoft SQL Server 2005.

Whether it is invoked automatically, as with managed .exe assemblies, or loaded by using the unmanaged hosting API, a .NET Framework application requires a piece of code called a runtime host. The runtime host loads the runtime into a process, creates application domains within the process, and loads and executes user code within those application domains.

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