Side-by-Side assembly sharing is an infrastructure that is used to do the following:
- Safely share assemblies among multiple applications
- Offset some negative effects of sharing, for example, DLL conflicts.
Instead of having a single version of an assembly that assumes backward compatibility with all applications, side-by-side assembly sharing enables multiple versions of a COM or Win32 assembly to run simultaneously on a system. For more information, see Isolated Applications and Side-by-side Assemblies.
Side-by-Side Assemblies are not available on systems earlier than Windows XP.