The latest .Net framework - 4.5 is an in place upgrade (it replaces the 4.0 framework installation) and according to Microsoft is fully backward compatible with all applications targeting the 4.0 framework which is the case with Sitefinity.
There are a few optimizations that you can take advantage of when running your Sitefinity CMS application on .Net 4.5. The Multi-Core Just-In-Time compilation and the background garbage collections are valid for all scenarios. Other memory usage optimizations are useful only in high-density web hosting scenarios. High-density web hosting scenario is when you have a lot of less loaded applications and you want to optimize per-site resources consumption, like memory and space. This is usually the case with shared hosting providers.
In .NET 4.5, the server default garbage collector mode for website applications introduces support for concurrent collections. It minimizes long blocking collections, while continuing to maintain high application throughput. This benefits heavy loaded applications a lot, because the full garbage collections (generation 2) do not block all threads for as long as the default .NET 4.0 GC server mode. For more information, see An Overview of Performance Improvements in .NET 4.5
Another thing to consider is that according to Microsoft some of the causes for Large Object Heap fragmentation have been fixed in the garbage collector implementation in .NET 4.5.
In .NET 4.5, a new machine wide setting is provided that minimizes application memory usage. Sitefinity CMS can use significantly less memory with this setting enabled (sacrificing performance). For more information, see Tuning garbage collection to optimize for memory.
Generally, this setting combines more detailed configurations, most of which were available in previous versions of .NET. For more information, see ASP.NET 2.0/3.5 Shared Hosting Configuration.
IMPORTANT: These settings are reducing memory consumption at the expense of performance. Consider them only if the memory usage of Sitefinity CMS is the limiting factor in achieving your goal.
When hosting multiple websites on the same server they often use common assemblies. However, each application has its own copy of those assemblies and once started they load them in their private memory. This can be avoided by sharing those assemblies between all applications that are using it. This technique is introduced in .NET 4.5 and is called assembly interning. It reduces the private memory consumption of every Sitefinity CMS applications by about 50MB. Those 50MB memory become shared memory that is shared across all Sitefinity CMS instances. Therefore, the performance gain of those free megabytes increases with the number of application instances hosted on a given machine.
For more information, see Sharing Common Assemblies
NOTE: The aspnet_intern.exe that is used to share the assemblies is part of Visual Studio 11 SDK but works as a standalone executable. Therefore, you do not need to install Visual Studio and Visual Studio SDK on your production server in order to use it.
For more information, see Tips for optimizing performance.
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