Since .NET 4 was released Microsoft has been pushing an ever faster release cadence for its .NET libraries with new features coming out every few months instead of every few years like it had done in the past. As a result of a recent embarrassment, the ADO.NET team is moving back to using beta releases and, to reduce future confusion, adopting the concept of Semantic Versioning.
The introduction of a Code First option in Entity Framework has received quite a bit of praise. While it still has a long way to go before it unseats the reigning ORM, nHibernate, the progress Microsoft is making is quite astounding. In order to keep the momentum up Microsoft is releasing a set of power tools that will take an existing database and create a Code First representation.
ADO.NET Entity Framework 4.1 is upon us – slated for a late April release, it will come with a whole set of new features, but not all of them are going to make it.
Earlier this month the ADO.NET team released CTP5 of their Entity Framework Code-First library. The library is meant to provide a code-centric workflow for developers when working with data.
Under the current version of WCF Data Services, developers can associate only one streaming resource with a given entity. With the October 2010 CTP, developers can now add additional named streams to an entity. For example, for images you may have streams named “Thumbnail”, “Small”, and “Full”.
IBM is offering a demo of their DB2 Add-ins for Visual Studio 2010. In addition to "full end to end debugging for SQL procedures for VB and C# apps”, it includes ADO.NET and Entity Framework providers for many of the DB2 variants.
Serena Yeoh, a Microsoft consultant and a contributor to Microsoft pattern&practices Application Architecture Guide, has created a Layered Architecture Sample for .NET 4.0 which was later ported to Azure, showcasing various .NET technologies (WPF, WCF, WF, ASP.NET, ADO.NET EF) used in an architecture based on the Layered Architecture design pattern.
Entity Framework Feature CTP 4 recently released updates the Code First programming model with new code conventions and data annotations, and adds two new types, DbContext and DbSet
Microsoft has answered what they call “Top Ten Questions on Data”, explaining what has happened or it is going to happen to Oslo, ADO.NET Data Services, WCF, LINQ to SQL, T-SQL and other technologies.
LLBLGen Pro is an ORM tool which supports multiple persistence frameworks: LLBLGen Pro Runtime, Entity Framework, NHibernate and LINQ to SQL. Other new features are: support for .NET 4.0, model-first or database-first development mode, model view, project validation.
A new version of the Spring.NET framework, version 1.3, was recently released. InfoQ spoke with Mark Pollack, founder and lead of the Spring.NET project, to learn more about this release and what new capabilities it brings, and also to learn more about the new Spring Integration.NET project.
Recently, a post by Oren Eini (a.k.a. Ayende Raheim) touched off a debate around the respective merits and capabilities of NHibernate and Entity Framework 4.0, two .NET-based Object/Relational Maping frameworks. InfoQ explored this debate in more detail to understand some of the perspectives which were given.
Sadly the terms “ORM” and “performance problems” often travel together. By hiding the underlying SQL from the developers, ORMs can offer a huge productivity boost. Unfortunately they also make it easy to generate ridiculously bad queries without realizing it. And without stored procedures to cross reference, finding the offending code without an ORM-specific profiler can be quite tricky.
Microsoft’s vision for .NET is a wide one. In addition to support for all programming languages, MS wants to bring together all communication frameworks and data storage engines. While WCF is making headway for standardizing communication APIs, their universal data access model Entity Framework is lagging behind. Much is this is due to lack of direct vendor support from companies like Oracle.
Not everything planned for Visual Studio 2010 made it in beta 1. This includes some important features for ORM fans. Entity Framework CTP 1 includes support for Self Tracking Entities, POCO Templates, and support for EDMX-free coding.