Get started with ASP.NET Core MVC

By Rick Anderson

This tutorial teaches ASP.NET Core MVC web development with controllers and views. If you're new to ASP.NET Core web development, consider the Razor Pages version of this tutorial, which provides an easier starting point.

This tutorial teaches the basics of building an ASP.NET Core MVC web app.

The app manages a database of movie titles. You learn how to:

  • Create a web app.
  • Add and scaffold a model.
  • Work with a database.
  • Add search and validation.

At the end, you have an app that can manage and display movie data.

View or download sample code (how to download).


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Create a web app

From Visual Studio, select File > New > Project.

File > New > Project

Complete the New Project dialog:

  • In the left pane, select .NET Core
  • In the center pane, select ASP.NET Core Web Application (.NET Core)
  • Name the project "MvcMovie" (It's important to name the project "MvcMovie" so when you copy code, the namespace will match.)
  • select OK

New project dialog, .Net core in left pane, ASP.NET Core web

Complete the New ASP.NET Core Web Application (.NET Core) - MvcMovie dialog:

  • In the version selector drop-down box select ASP.NET Core 2.2
  • Select Web Application (Model-View-Controller)
  • select OK.

New project dialog, .Net core in left pane, ASP.NET Core web

Visual Studio used a default template for the MVC project you just created. You have a working app right now by entering a project name and selecting a few options. This is a basic starter project, and it's a good place to start.

Select Ctrl-F5 to run the app in non-debug mode.

  • Visual Studio starts IIS Express and runs your app. Notice that the address bar shows localhost:port# and not something like That's because localhost is the standard hostname for your local computer. When Visual Studio creates a web project, a random port is used for the web server. In the image above, the port number is 5000. The URL in the browser shows localhost:5000. When you run the app, you'll see a different port number.
  • Launching the app with Ctrl+F5 (non-debug mode) allows you to make code changes, save the file, refresh the browser, and see the code changes. Many developers prefer to use non-debug mode to quickly launch the app and view changes.
  • You can launch the app in debug or non-debug mode from the Debug menu item:

Debug menu

  • You can debug the app by selecting the IIS Express button

IIS Express

  • Select Accept to consent to tracking. This app doesn't track personal information. The template generated code includes assets to help meet General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

    Home or Index page

    The following image shows the app after accepting tracking:

    Home or Index page

In the next part of this tutorial, you learn about MVC and start writing some code.