The .NET Framework (pronounced dot net) is a software framework that runs primarily on Microsoft Windows. It includes a large library and supports several programming languages which allows language interoperability (each language can use code written in other languages). Programs written for the .NET Framework execute in a software environment (as contrasted to hardware environment), known as the Common Language Runtime (CLR), an application virtual machine that provides important services such as security, memory management, and exception handling. The class library and the CLR together constitute the .NET Framework. The .NET Framework's Base Class Library provides user interface, data access, database connectivity, cryptography, web application development, numeric algorithms, and network communications. Programmers produce software by combining their own source code with the .NET Framework and other libraries. The .NET Framework is intended to be used by most new applications created for the Windows platform. Microsoft also produces a popular integrated development environment largely for .NET software called Visual Studio. Active Server Pages (ASP), also known as Classic ASP or ASP Classic, was Microsoft's first server-side script engine for dynamically-generated Web pages. Initially released as an add-on to Internet Information Services (IIS) via the Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack (ca. 1998), it was subsequently included as a free component of Windows Server (since the initial release of Windows 2000 Server). ASP.NET has superseded ASP. ASP 2.0 provided six built-in objects: Application, ASPError, Request, Response, Server, and Session. Session, for example, represents a cookie-based session that maintains the state of variables from page to page. The Active Scripting engine's support of the Component Object Model (COM) enables ASP Websites to access functionality in compiled libraries such as DLLs. ASP.NET is a Web application framework developed and marketed by Microsoft to allow programmers to build dynamic Web sites, Web applications and Web services. It was first released in January 2002 with version 1.0 of the .NET Framework, and is the successor to Microsoft's Active Server Pages (ASP) technology. ASP.NET is built on the Common Language Runtime (CLR), allowing programmers to write ASP.NET code using any supported .NET language. The ASP.NET SOAP extension framework allows ASP.NET components to process SOAP messages.