Visual Basic .NET Vs Visual C# - (Differences)

By: Ram Babu Viewed: 153295 times  Printer Friendly Format    

ASP.NET and, indeed, the whole .NET Framework are programming language–independent. That means you can choose any language that has implemented a CLR-compliant compiler. In addition to developing its own programming languages, Microsoft has formed partnerships with many language vendors to provide .NET support for Perl, Pascal, Eiffel, Cobol, Python, Smalltalk, and other programming languages.

Visual Basic .NET and Visual C#  are functionally equivalent, which means that they each provide equal abilities to create Web applications. The differences between the two languages are syntactical and stylistic.

Most current programmers will choose the language they are most familiar with. Current Visual Basic programmers will be more comfortable developing Web applications in Visual Basic .NET; C or C++ programmers will be more comfortable developing with Visual C#.

If you are new to programming or if you are choosing to extend your programming skills to new languages, learning both Visual Basic .NET and Visual C# is a practical goal. This is especially true when you create Web applications, since most of the tasks are performed through the .NET Framework classes, which means Visual Basic .NET code and Visual C# code often look nearly identical.

Table below summarizes some significant differences between Visual Basic .NET and Visual C#. This information is useful to keep in mind if you are choosing a programming language for the first time or if you are planning to switch between languages.

Visual Basic .NET and Visual C# Differences


Visual Basic .NET

Visual C# .NET

Case sensitive

Not case sensitive:

response.write("Yo") ' OK

Case sensitive:

response.write("Yo"); // Error Response.Write("Yo"); // OK

Functional blocks

Use beginning and ending statements to declare functional blocks of code:

Sub Show(strX as String)
End Sub

Use braces to declare functional blocks of code:

void Show (string strX)

Type conversion

Implicit type conversions are permitted by default:

Dim intX As Integer
intX = 3.14  ' Permitted

You can limit conversions by including an Option Strict On statement at the beginning of modules.

Type conversions are performed explicitly by casts:

int intX;
intX = 3.14; // Error!
intX = (int)3.14; //Cast, OK.

Or, use type conversion methods:

string strX;
strX = intX.ToString();


Array elements are specified using parentheses:

arrFruit(1) = "Apple"

Array elements are specified using square brackets:

arrFruit[1] = "Apple";


You can omit parentheses after method names if arguments are omitted:

strX = objX.ToString

You must include parentheses after all methods:

strX = objX.ToString();

Statement termination

Statements are terminated by carriage return:


Statements are terminated by the semicolon (;):


Statement continuation

Statements are continued using the underscore (_):

intX = System.Math.Pi * _

Statements continue until the semicolon (;) and can span multiple lines if needed:

intX = System.Math.PI * 

String operator

Use the ampersand (&) or plus sign (+) to join strings:

strFruit = "Apples" & _
  " Oranges"

Use the plus sign (+) to join strings:

strFruit = "Apples" + 
  " Oranges";

Comparison operators

Use =, >, <, >=, <=, <> to compare values:

If intX >= 5 Then

Use ==, >, <, >=, <=, != to compare values:

if (intX >= 5)


Use the Not keyword to express logical negation:

If Not IsPostBack Then

Use the ! operator to express logical negation:

if (!IsPostBack)

Object comparison

Use the Is keyword to compare object variables:

If objX Is objY Then

Use == to compare object variables:

if (objX == objY)

Object existence

Use the Nothing keyword or the IsNothing function to check if an object exists:

If IsNothing(objX) Then

Use the null keyword to check if an object exists:

if (objX == null)

In addition to the differences shown in Table above, there are significant keyword differences between the two languages. The Visual Studio .NET Help topic “Language Equivalents” provides a complete comparison of Visual Basic .NET, Visual C#, and other Microsoft languages.

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