Microsoft Blazor wallpaper

In this new post, I want to summarize what I understood for getting started with C# and Blazor, the new technology from Microsoft. I briefly spoke about Blazor in some other posts but here I want to introduce it properly.

We live in exciting times, as .NET developer’s life has never been better. We can create apps for any operating system be it Windows, Linux, iOS, Android or macOS. Of course, we can also build amazing web-based applications with ASP.NET. MVC, Razor Pages, and WebAPI have allowed us to create robust scalable and reliable systems for years, but there has long been a missing piece to the puzzle.

One thing all of ASP.NETs web solutions have in common is that they are server based. We’ve never been able to leverage the power of C# and .NET to write client-side applications, this has always been the domain of JavaScript.

So, I’m going to introduce you to a revolutionary client-side framework: Blazor. Built on web standards, Blazor allows us to write rich, engaging user interfaces using C# and .NET. We’ll explore how Blazor can make your development process more efficient and raise your productivity levels, especially if you’re using .NET on the server as well. We’ll cover hosting models, an important concept to understand when starting out with Blazor. We’ll look at both production supported models and the benefits and tradeoffs of each. Next, we’ll introduction components and the benefits of using them to build UIs. Finally, we’ll discuss the reasons why you should consider Blazor for your next project.

Why choose Blazor for new applications?

Arguably, the hardest part of starting a new project in recent times has been choosing the tech stack, there is just so much choice available. This is especially true in the front-end world. Pick a framework (Angular, React, Vue), pick a language (TypeScript, CoffeeScript, Dart), pick a build tool (Webpack, Parcel, Browserify). If a team is new to this eco-system, it can seem an almost impossible task to try and work out which combination of technologies will help make the project a success; it’s even hard for teams with experience!

So, first in this getting started with C# and Blazor, let’s cover some of the top reasons for choosing Blazor for your next project and how it can help avoid some of the issues I’ve just mentioned.

Pros

  • C#, a modern and feature rich language – It’s powerful, easy to learn, and versatile
  • Great tooling – The .NET community has been fortunate to have some amazing tooling. Visual Studio is an extremely powerful, feature rich and extensible IDE. It’s also 100% free for individuals or non-enterprise teams of 5 or less. If you prefer something more lightweight, then there is Visual Studio Code – one of the most popular code editors today. Both Visual Studio and VS Code are both cross platform:
    • Visual Studio for Windows and Mac
    • Visual Studio Code for Windows, Mac and Linux.
  • .NET Ecosystem – While many new frameworks need to wait for an ecosystem to build up around them, Blazor can tap into the existing .NET ecosystem. Blazor applications target .NET Standard 2.1 and can in theory use any .NET Standard NuGet package.
  • Unopinionated – There are no preferred patterns or practices for Blazor development, you can write applications using the ones you’re familiar and comfortable with.
  • Shallow learning curve – If you’re an existing .NET developer then the learning curve for Blazor is quite shallow. Razor, C#, dependency injection, project structure will all look familiar to you. This means you can focus on writing features quicker, rather than learning the framework.
  • Code sharing – If you’re using C# on the server then Blazor makes an excellent paring. One of the most frustrating problems with different client and server languages is the inability to reuse code. With Blazor, everything is C#. Any shared code can be placed in a common .NET Standard class library and shared easily between server and client.
  • Open source – As with many projects at Microsoft, Blazor is fully open source and the code is freely available on GitHub for you to browse, download, or fork your own copy.

Components, a better way to build UI.

Blazor, as with many modern front-end frameworks, uses the concept of components to build the UI. Everything is a component, pages, parts of a page, layouts, they’re all components. There are various types of component in Blazor as well as multiple ways to write them all of which will be explored in future chapters. But learning to think in terms of components is essential for writing Blazor applications.

What is a component?

You can think of a component as a building block. You put these building blocks together to form your application. These building blocks can be as big or as small as you decide, however, building an entire UI as a single component wouldn’t be a good idea. Components really show their benefit when you think of them as a way to divide up logical areas of a UI. Let’s look at an example of a user interface structured as components.

Example of a layout divided into components - Getting started with C# and Blazor
Example of a layout divided into components

Each area of the interface is a component and each one has a certain responsibility. You may also notice that there is a hierarchy forming. The layout component sits at the top of the tree, the menu, header, home page and footer are all child components of the layout component. These child components could, and probably would have child components of their own. For example, the header component could contain a logo component and a search component.

Example of nesting components to form a component tree - Getting started with C# and Blazor
Example of nesting components to form a component tree

The benefits of a component-based UI

Many UIs have repeating elements in them, a great advantage to using components is that you can define an element in a component and then reuse the component wherever the element repeats. This can drastically cut down on the amount of repeated code in an application. It also makes the maintainability of the application much better as if the design of that element changes you only need to update it in a single place.

To cater for more advanced scenarios, components can define their own APIs allowing data and events to be passed in and out. Imagine a line of business application, it’s probably safe to assume that within that app there would be lots of places data would be displayed in table format. One approach would be to create each table as its own component, however, this would mean we would end up with a lot of components which displayed data in a table.

A better approach would be to define a single component which took in a dataset as a parameter and then displayed it in a table. Now we have a single component for displaying data in a table that we can reuse all over the application. We could also add features to this component, things such as sorting or paging. As we do, this functionality is automatically available to all the tables in the application as they are all reusing the same component.

Components

Components help speed up the development process. Due to the reusable nature of components, using them often leads to shorter development times. They can be composed together.

While usually self-contained, it’s also possible to have components work together to create more complex UI. For example, let’s take the data table scenario we just talked about, that could be a single component but that could potentially be quite large.

Another approach would be to divide it up into several smaller components, each performing a certain job. We could have a table header component, a table body component even a table cell component. Each of these components are performing a specific job but they are still part of the overall table component.

Anatomy of a Blazor component

Now, in this post getting started with C# and Blazor, we have a better idea of what components are in a general sense, let’s look at an example of a component in Blazor. For this we’re going to grab a component from the Blazor project template.

In figure 1.3 we can see an example of a component from Blazors standard project template, Counter.razor.

The sections of a component in Blazor - Getting started with C# and Blazor
The sections of a component in Blazor

This particular component is known as a routable component, as it has a page directive declared at the top. Routable components are essentially a page in the application. When the user navigates to the /counter route in the application, this component will be loaded by Blazor router. It displays a simple counter with a button and when the user clicks on the button the count is incremented by one and the new value displayed to the user.

Understanding the code

While understanding the code isn’t important at this point, we can understand the structure of the component. Figure 1.3 is divided up into three sections each has a certain responsibility.

  • Section 1 is used to define directives, add using statements, inject dependencies, or other general configuration which applies to the whole component.
  • Section 2 defines the markup of the component; this is written using the Razor language, a mix of C# and HTML. Here we define the visual elements which make up the component.
  • Section 3 is the code block. This is used to define the logic of the component. It is possible to write any valid C# code into this section. You can define fields, properties, even entire classes if you wish.

Blazor, a platform for building modern UI with C#

Blazor is a fully featured framework for building modern client-side applications using the power of C# and .NET. Allowing developers to build engaging applications which work across nearly any platform – including web, mobile and desktop.

Blazor is an alternative to JavaScript frameworks and libraries such as Angular, Vue and React. If you’ve had experience working with any of these then you’ll probably start spotting familiar concepts. The most notable influence is the idea of building UIs with components, a concept all these technologies share and something we’ll explore in more detail later in this chapter.

No installation required

Because Blazor is built on top of web standards; it doesn’t require the end user to have .NET installed on their machines or any kind of browser plugin or extension. In fact, with Blazor WebAssembly applications we don’t even need .NET running on the server, this flavor of Blazor can be hosted as simple static files.

Being built on .NET means we have access to the vibrant ecosystem of packages available on NuGet. We also have best in class tooling with Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code, and of course, with .NET being cross platform, we can develop our Blazor applications on whatever our preferred platform is, be that Windows, Mac or Linux.

Mobile applications

Therefore, I want to highlight that Blazors programming model can also be used to build cross-platform native mobile applications via an experimental project called Mobile Blazor Bindings. This is a collaboration between the ASP.NET Core team and the Xamarin team to investigate the potential and demand for using Blazor to build non-web UIs. Microsoft has also announced the future evolution of Xamarin Forms, the Multi-platform App UI framework known as .NET MAUI. This framework will allow developers to build native apps which run on Windows, macOS, iOS and Android. According to the roadmap, Blazors programming model will be offered as an option for building these new .NET MAUI apps. This really makes Blazor a compelling technology to learn as once understood, could allow developers to build UIs for almost any platform or device.

Hopefully, you can already see Blazor is an exciting technology with a lot of potential. But there is a key concept which is important to understand before we go any further, that of hosting models. Let’s tackle that next.

Understanding hosting models

When first getting started with Blazor you will immediately come across the concept of hosting models. Essentially, hosting models are where a Blazor application is run. Currently, Blazor has two production supported hosting models called Blazor WebAssembly and Blazor Server. Regardless of which of these models you choose for your application, the component model is the same meaning components are written the same way and can be interchanged between either hosting model.

Blazor has a separation between hosting models and its app/component model. Meaning components written for one hosting model can be used with another. - Getting started with C# and Blazor
Blazor has a separation between hosting models and its app/component model. Meaning components written for one hosting model can be used with another.

The above image shows an abstract representation of Blazors architecture, with the separation between the app and component model and the various hosting models. One of the interesting aspects of Blazor is the potential of other hosting models being made available over time to allow Blazor to run in more places and be used to create more types of UI.

Outside of the two production hosting models we will cover below, there are also two other experimental models Microsoft have been testing, Blazor Electron and Mobile Blazor Bindings.

Blazor Electron

Blazor Electron is the oldest of the two experiments and allows Blazor components to be hosted in an Electron application (https://www.electronjs.org/). Developers write components for this model using HTML and C# in the exact same way as they would for Blazor WebAssembly or Blazor Server.

Code example

An example of a component which can be used by all three of hosting models is shown in the following code.

<div>
    <p>Current count: @currentCount</p>
    <button @onclick="IncrementCount">Click me</button>
</div>
 
@code {
    private int currentCount = 0;
 
    private void IncrementCount()
    {
        currentCount++;
    }
}

Mobile Blazor Bindings

The newer experiment is Mobile Blazor Bindings. This model allows developers to write native mobile applications using Blazors programming model. However, this hosting model can’t use components written using web technologies, components for this hosting model must be written using native controls. The following code contains the same component as the code abode but rewritten for the Mobile Blazor Bindings hosting model.

<StackLayout>
    <Label> Current count: @currentCount </Label>
    <Button OnClick="@IncrementCount">Click me</Button>
</StackLayout>
 
@code {
    private int currentCount = 0;
 
    private void IncrementCount()
    {
        currentCount++;
    }
}

As you can see the programming model is the same between the two code samples. The logic in the code block is unchanged, it’s just C# after all. The only difference is in the markup where web technologies have been swapped for native mobile controls. This does mean that we can’t swap component around between web-based hosting models and native hosting models. However, once we’ve mastered Blazors programming model we can easily use that knowledge to create other types of UI.

Now we’ve talked a little about hosting models in general we’re going to focus in on the two production supported options available in Blazor today, Blazor WebAssembly and Blazor Server.

Blazor WebAssembly

Blazor WebAssembly is the principal hosting model for Blazor applications. Choosing this option will mean your application will run entirely inside the client’s browser making it a direct alternative to JavaScript SPA (Single Page Application) frameworks. To understand how this hosting model works we’re going to walk through the process of initializing a Blazor WebAssembly application shown in following image.

Bootup of a Blazor WebAssembly application showing the interactions between the client’s browser and the web server - Getting started with C# and Blazor
Bootup of a Blazor WebAssembly application showing the interactions between the client’s browser and the web server

Process begin

The process begins when a browser makes a request to the webserver. The web server will return a set of files needed to load the application, these include the host page for the application, usually called index.html, any static assets required by the application such as images, CSS and JavaScript. As well as a special JavaScript file called blazor.webassembly.js.

At this point, you may be wondering why we have a JavaScript file, one of the big selling points of Blazor is the ability to write UI logic using C# instead of JavaScript, right? Yes, that’s true.

But as of right now WebAssembly has a fairly large limitation, it can’t alter the DOM or call Web APIs directly.

DOM manipulation

In order to manage this current limitation, part of the Blazor framework resides in JavaScript called blazor.webassembly.js file. This part of the framework does three main things:

  1. Loads and initializes the Blazor application in the browser.
  2. Provides direct DOM manipulation so Blazor can perform UI updates.
  3. Provides APIs for JavaScript interop scenarios, which we’ll discuss in detail in later chapters.

It’s possible that in the future this file will no longer be required, this will depend on how fast features are added to WebAssembly and adopted by browsers. But for now, it’s an essential part of the framework.

Now, we’ve cleared that up let’s get back to our booting Blazor app. I want to point out that the server returns all static files. They haven’t required any server-side compilation or manipulation. This means that they can be hosted on any service which offers static hosting, there is no requirement for a .NET runtime to be present on the server. For the first time this opens up free hosting options such as GitHub pages to .NET developers (applies to standalone Blazor WebAssembly applications only).

blazor.boot.json

Once the browser has received all the initial files from the web server it can process them and construct the Document Object Model (DOM). Next, blazor.webassembly.js is executed. This performs many actions but in the context of starting a Blazor WebAssembly app it downloads the blazor.boot.json file. This file essentially contains an inventory of all of the framework and application files which are required to run the app.

Most of these files are normal .NET assemblies, there is nothing special about them and they could be run on any compatible .NET runtime. But there’s also another type of file which is downloaded called dotnet.wasm.

dotnet.wasm

The dotnet.wasm file is in fact a complete .NET runtime, the mono .NET runtime to be exact, which has been compiled to WebAssembly.

At this point in time, only the .NET runtime is compiled to WebAssembly, the framework and application are standard .NET assemblies. In the future a feature called AOT (Ahead Of Time) compiling will be introduced which will allow developers to compile parts of their applications into WebAssembly.

The benefit of this will be performance, any code compiled to WebAssembly will be many times more performant than the interpreted approach used today. However, there’s a tradeoff, and that’s size. AOT compiled code will be bigger than the standard assemblies meaning a larger overall download size for the application.

Once the blazor.boot.json file has been downloaded and the files listed in it have been downloaded, it’s time for the application to be run. The WebAssembly .NET runtime is initialized which in turn loads the Blazor framework and finally the application itself. At this point we have a running Blazor application which exists entirely inside the client’s browser. Aside from requesting additional data (if applicable), there’s no further reliance on the server.

Calculating UI Updates

We now understand how a Blazor WebAssembly application boots up. But how do UI updates get calculated? Just as we did for the initialization process, we’re going to follow a scenario to understand how this happens and what Blazor does.

The process of client-side navigation in Blazor WebAssembly from clicking a link to the application of UI updates - Getting started with C# and Blazor
The process of client-side navigation in Blazor WebAssembly from clicking a link to the application of UI updates

For our scenario we have a Blazor WebAssembly application with two pages, home and counter. Neither of these pages have anything on them except a heading saying either “Home” or “Counter”, respectively. The user is on the home page of the application and is going to click on a link to the go to the counter page. We’ll follow the process Blazor goes through to update the UI from that of the home page to the counter page.

Process explained

When the user clicks on the counter link, the navigation event is intercepted by Blazor on the JavaScript side. This event is then passed over to Blazor on the WebAssembly side and is processed by Blazors router component.

The router checks its routing table for any routable components which match the link the user has attempted to navigate to. In our case, it will find a match with the Counter component and a new instance of that component will be created and the relevant lifecycle methods will be executed.

Once complete Blazor will work out the minimum amount of changes that are required to update the DOM to match that of the Counter component. When this is complete, those changes will be passed back down to the Blazor JavaScript runtime and that will in-turn, apply those changes to the physical DOM. At this point the UI will update the user will be on the Counter page.

All of this has happened client-side in the user browser. There was no need for a server during any point in this process. It’s fair to say that in a real world application, you would probably make a call out to a server to some point in this process. This usually happens during the execution of the lifecycle methods of the component being navigated to in order to load some initial data for the component. But this would depend on the individual application.

Benefits

Now we know a bit more about how the Blazor WebAssembly hosting model works, let talk about the benefits and tradeoffs of choosing this model. Let’s start with the benefits.

  • Applications run on the client. This means that there is much less load on the server, you can offload much of the work to the client. This could lead to significant cost saving on server infrastructure and improve the scalability of an application.
  • Can work in offline scenarios. As the app runs entirely inside the browser there’s no need for a persistent connection to the server, making applications more tolerant to unstable network connections. It’s also trivial is enable Progressive Web Application (PWA) functionality. In fact, Blazor WebAssembly has this as an option you can select when creating your application.
  • Deployed as static files. As Blazor WebAssembly apps are just static files, they can be deployed anywhere static hosting is available. This opens up some options which have never been available to .NET developers historically. Services such as GitHub pages, Netlify, Azure Blob Storage, AWS S3 Buckets, Azure Static Web Sites, are all options for hosting standalone Blazor WebAssembly applications.
  • Code Sharing. Potentially one of the greatest benefits with Blazor WebAssembly is if you’re using C# on the server. You can now use the same C# objects on your client as you use on the server. The days of keeping TypeScript models in sync with their C# equivalent and vice versa, are over.

Tradeoffs

Of course, nothing is a silver bullet so let’s understand some tradeoffs of this model.

  • Payload. The initial download size for a Blazor WebAssembly app can be considered quite large. The project template weighs in at around 1.8mb when published. This is largely down to the fact Blazor needs to ship an entire .NET runtime to the client which comes in at around 600kb. However, this is a one-time cost as the runtime and many of the framework assemblies are cached on the first load. Meaning subsequent loads can be a small as a few kb.
  • Load time. A knock-on effect of the payload size can be load time. If the user’s on a poor internet connection the amount of time required to download the initial files will be higher, which will delay the start of the application, leaving the user with a loading message of some kind. This can be offset slightly by using server-side prerendering, however, while this will give the user something more interesting to look at initially, the app still won’t be interactive until all files have been downloaded and initialized. Server-side prerendering for Blazor WebAssembly apps also requires a ASP.NET Core element on the server, which negates any free hosting options.
  • Restricted runtime. This is arguably not a tradeoff as such, but for existing .NET developers who are used to having a relatively free rein over the machine their apps run on, it’s something to be aware of. WebAssembly applications run in the same browser sandbox as JavaScript applications. This means, for example, that you will not be allowed to reach out to the users’ machine and do things such access the local file system.

Blazor WebAssembly summarize

To summarize, Blazor WebAssembly is the hosting model to choose if you’re looking for a direct replacement for a JavaScript SPA framework such as Angular, React or Vue. While there are a few tradeoffs to consider, there are some substantial benefits to choosing this model.

Blazor Server

Now we’ve seen how Blazor WebAssembly works, let’s turn our attention to the Server hosting model and see how it differs. Blazor Server was the first production supported hosting model for Blazor, being released around 8 months before the WebAssembly version. As we did with the previous model, we’ll walk through initializing a Blazor Server application to help us understand how things work.

Bootup process of a Blazor Server application
Bootup process of a Blazor Server application

Process begins

The process begins with a request to load the site from the browser. When this request hits the webserver two things could happen, the app is started up, or if the app is already running, a new session is established. Why would the app already be running? Blazor WebAssembly follows the traditional SPA model and runs entirely in the browser, essentially making it like a desktop application. Each user has their own instance of the app which runs locally on their machine. Blazor Server is different, only one instance of the application runs on the server, but it can support many clients. Therefore, the app could already be running, and the new request would just establish a new session.

Process static files

The request is then processed by the application and the initial payload is sent back to the browser. This includes static assets such as CSS and JavaScript files, and images. There is also the initial HTML, but this is compiled rather than static HTML we saw in Blazor WebAssembly. The reason for this is that the hosting page for a Blazor Server application is a Razor Page rather than a static HTML page in the WebAssembly model. The advantage of this is it allows Blazor Server applications to use server-side prerendering out of the box. In fact, this feature is enabled by default when you create this type of Blazor application.

Once the initial payload is returned to the browser the files are processed and the DOM is created – then a file called blazor.server.js is executed. The job of this runtime is to establish a SignalR connection back to the Blazor application running on the server. At this point the application is ready for user interaction.

Calculating UI updates

What happens when a user interacts with the application? We saw earlier that in Blazor WebAssembly the events are processed right there in the browser along with calculating any UI updates and applying them to the DOM. But that can’t happen here as the application is running on the server.

We’ll follow the same scenario as we did with Blazor WebAssembly, we have a Blazor Server application with two pages, home and counter. Neither of these pages have anything on them except a heading saying either “Home” or “Counter”, respectively. The user is on the home page of the application and is going to click on a link to the go to the counter page. We’ll follow the process Blazor goes through to update the UI from that of the home page to the counter page.

Process of updating the UI in Blazor Server
Process of updating the UI in Blazor Server

Process explained

The user clicks on the link in the menu and the click event is intercepted by Blazor’s runtime on the client. The runtime then processes the event to understand what has happened. In this case there are two things, a mouse click event and a navigation event, due to it being a hyperlink that was clicked. These two events are then bundled up and sent back to the server over the SignalR connection that was established when the application started.

So, the client sent a the message to the server and the server unpacks and process the message. The Blazor framework then calls any application code necessary. In this case it would instantiate an instance of the counter page component and execute the relevant lifecycle methods.

SignalR

Once complete, Blazor will work out what the minimum amount of changes needed to make the current page transform to the counter page and then send these back to the client via the SignalR connection. Just to be clear, Blazor will not send back an entirely new page to the client. It will only send back the minimum number of instructions needed to update the current DOM to match the Counter page. In our case, the only difference is the heading. Blazor will send back a single instruction to change the text in the heading from “Home” to “Counter”.

DOM

Once back on the client, the client unpacks the changes, and the required changes are applied to the physical DOM. From the user’s perspective, they appear to have navigated to a new page in the application, the counter page. But they are still on the same physical page, it just has a different header.

You may have spotted this already, but the overall process isn’t any different to how Blazor WebAssembly worked, it’s just been stretched out a bit over that SignalR connection. Blazor Server is just as much a SPA as Angular, Vue or Blazor WebAssembly. It just happens to run its logic and calculate UI updates on the server instead of the client. In fact, I would go as far as saying if you were presented with two identical applications, one written in Blazor Server and one in Blazor WebAssembly, you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between them, as a user.

Performance

Before we talk about benefits and tradeoffs for this model, I want quickly mention performance. With all the network chatter which goes on in this hosting model I’m sure it may have crossed your mind that this might not scale particularly well.

The test

In 2019, the ASP.NET Core team did some testing to establish the performance levels of Blazor Server apps. They setup an application in Azure and tested it on different powered virtual machines, checking the number of active users the application could support. Here are the results.

  • Standard D1 v2 Instance (1vCPU & 3.5GB Memory). Over 5000 concurrent users
  • Standard D3 v2 Instance (4vCPU & 14GB Memory). Over 20,000 concurrent users

As you can see, Blazor Server is no slouch when it comes to performance. The main factor they found which effects the number of clients that can be supported is memory. This makes sense as the server needs to keep track of all the clients which are connected to it, the more there are the more information needs to be stored in memory.

Testing

The other major finding from testing was how network latency effected the application. As all interaction are sent back to the server for processing, latency can have a large impact on usability.

If the server is located 250ms away from the client, then each interaction is going to take at least 500ms to be processed as it has to travel to the server (250ms), then be processed, then travel back again (250ms).

Testing found that when the latency went above 200ms then the UI began to feel sluggish and less responsive. As a rough rule you would always want your users to be on the same continent as the server. If you want to have a globally available Blazor Server application, then you need to have your app evenly distributed across the world aiming to keep all clients within 200ms of a server.

Benefits

As we did before, let’s look at the benefits and tradeoffs of choosing a Blazor Server application.

  • Small payload. As the application is running on the server as opposed to the client, the initial download is significantly smaller. Depending on static assets such as CSS and images a Blazor Server application can be as small as a 100-200kb.
  • Fast load time. With a much smaller payload the application loads much faster. The server-side prerendering also helps as the user never sees a loading message.
  • Access to the full runtime. The application code is executing on the server on top of the full .NET runtime. This means that you can do things such as access the servers file system if you require without hitting any security restrictions.
  • Code security. If you have code which is proprietary, and you don’t want people being able to download and interrogate it then Blazor Server is a good choice. The application code is all executed on the server and only the UI updates are sent to the client. This means your code is never exposed to the client in anyway.

Tradeoffs

  • Heavy server load. Where Blazor WebAssembly allows us to utilize the power of the client Blazor Server does the complete opposite. Almost all of the work is now being performed by the server. Meaning you might need a larger investment in your infrastructure to support Blazor Server apps.
  • Doesn’t work offline. Where Blazor WebAssembly takes offline working in its stride Blazor Server does not. The SignalR connection is the lifeline of the application and without it the client can’t function at all. By default, this results in an overlay with a message saying the client is attempting to reestablish the connection. If this fails, the user has to refresh the browser to restart the application.
  • Latency. Due to its design Blazor Server apps are sensitive to latency issues. Every interaction the user has with the application must be sent back to the server for processing and await any updates that need to be applied. If there is a high latency in the connection between client and server a noticeable lag manifests in the UI and actions quickly feel sluggish. In real numbers a latency above 200ms is going to start causing these issues.
  • Requires a stable connection. Following on from the need for low latency and tying in with the inability to work offline. Blazor Server apps need to have a stable internet connection. If the connection is intermittent in any way, the user will continually see the reconnecting overlay in their application which quickly becomes very disruptive. An obvious scenario where this could occur is when a user is on a mobile device which has intermittent connection.

Blazor Server summarize

In summary, if you’re looking for a fast loading application and you have users with a fast and stable network connection, then Blazor Server is a great choice.

By Enrico

My greatest passion is technology. I am interested in multiple fields and I have a lot of experience in software design and development. I started professional development when I was 6 years. Today I am a strong full-stack .NET developer (C#, Xamarin, Azure)

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