C# – How to load assemblies at runtime using Microsoft Extensibility Framework (MEF)

You can use Microsoft Extensibility Framework (MEF) to load assemblies at runtime. This is an alternative to implementing dynamic assembly loading with a more manual approach (like using AssemblyLoadContext). Here’s an example of using MEF to load an instance of IMessageProcessorPlugin from some assembly located in the C:\Plugins directory: MEF looks for exported types in … Read more

ASP.NET Core – Log messages to the database in the background

I was reading about logging in ASP.NET when I came across this statement about logging to the database: When logging to SQL Server, don’t do so directly. Instead, add log messages to an in-memory queue and have a background worker dequeue and insert data to SQL Server. Paraphrased from Microsoft – No asynchronous logger methods … Read more

How to stop the ASP.NET service when a background service crashes

When a background service throws an exception in ExecuteAsync() and stops running, nothing happens. No errors are logged, and the ASP.NET service continues to run. What if you want to stop the ASP.NET service when the background service crashes? To do that, you’ll need to handle exceptions in the background service and call IHostApplicationLifetime.StopApplication(), like … Read more

C# – How to supply IOptions

The options pattern is an indirect way to dependency inject settings into a registered service. If you’re using code that implements the options pattern, then you’re required to supply an IOptions<T> object. For example, let’s say you’re using the MovieService class and it has the following constructor: This requires you to supply the IOptions<MovieSettings> parameter. … Read more

ASP0000 Calling BuildServiceProvider from application code results in an additional copy of singleton services being created

When you try to call services.BuildServiceProvider(), you’ll get the following warning: Warning ASP0000 Calling ‘BuildServiceProvider’ from application code results in an additional copy of singleton services being created. Consider alternatives such as dependency injecting services as parameters to ‘Configure’. There are two scenarios where you may be calling BuildServiceProvider() because you want to resolve services … Read more

ASP.NET Core – Dependency inject a background service into the controllers

Let’s say you have a background service called DatabaseLoggerService. It runs as a hosted background service and logs messages to the database. It has the following definition: You want your controllers to use this for logging. They don’t need to know about the concrete DatabaseLoggerService class, and they don’t need to know they are actually … Read more

How to use NLog in ASP.NET

When you want to use NLog in ASP.NET, the first step is to install and configure NLog. Then you can either use NLog directly or fully integrate NLog and ASP.NET. Use NLog directly if you prefer to have static ILogger properties, instead of using dependency injection. The downside of this approach is that you’ll have … Read more

ASP.NET Core – How to change the JSON serialization settings

System.Text.Json is the default JSON serializer in ASP.NET Core. It uses the following default serialization settings: To change the settings at the service level for all controllers, call AddJsonOptions() in Startup.ConfigureServices() like this: Note: This example is passing in JsonStringEnumConverter, which makes JsonSerializer use the enum name instead of enum value. When you change the … Read more

ASP.NET Core – How to unit test an ApiController

The key to unit testing an ApiController class is to mock out all of its dependencies, including the controller’s HttpContext property, like this: If the controller method you’re testing uses anything from the HttpContext, then you’ll want to swap in your own value. Otherwise HttpContext will be null and you’ll get a NullReferenceException. Fortunately Microsoft … Read more

ASP.NET – How to use a BackgroundService for long-running and periodic tasks

In ASP.NET, when you need a long-running background task, or need to run a task periodically, you can implement IHostedService or BackgroundService and register your class as a hosted service in Startup. As you may have already encountered, if you try to run a long-running background task, the web server will randomly kill your task … Read more