ADO.Net Entity Framework Feature Community Technology Preview Released!


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We’ve released an update of the Entity Framework Feature CTP!  The updated CTP includes many requested improvements and added features we’ve gathered from the community since the release of our first CTP and supports installation with Visual Studio 2010 Beta 2 as well.  Some of the improvements and added features added since the last CTP include:

  • Enhancements to Code Only, including-
    • Fine Grained Control over model
      • Specify Navigation Property Inverses
      • Specify Property Facets
      • Complex Types
    • Customizable Mappings
      • Change Table Name, Column Names
      • Specify Custom Inheritance Strategy
      • Entity Splitting
      • Join Table Mapping
  • The Self-Tracking Entities template, allowing code generation of EF entities that facilitate ease of use in WCF/N-Tier scenarios-
    • Foreign Key associations: Self-Tracking Entities can take advantage of the Foreign Keys in the Model feature added in .NET 4.0 Beta 2 and can contain both navigation properties and Foreign Key properties for the same association. Fix-up logic has been tidied up to be aware of FKs.
    • Support for Silverlight 3: Generated entity types can be compiled to target Silverlight 3 and can be used in combination with Silverlight-enabled WCF services.
    • Databinding support: Generated entity types now implement INotifyPropertyChanged and use ObservableCollections allowing them to work better with WPF and Silverlight databinding.
    • Richer concurrency control support: Self-Tracking Entities now support the same variations for optimistic concurrency control as the Entity Framework. Original values are preserved for all required properties according to their concurrency mode in the Entity Data Model.
    • Improved independent association support: The approach for managing entities with dangling references has been reengineered to avoid unnecessary database round-trips.
    • New and improved methods: AcceptChanges, StartTracking, StopTracking where added and the existing MarkAsX methods are now extension methods.
    • Generated code improvements and refactoring: The ApplyChanges implementation has been moved to the Context template so the template has no binary dependencies besides Entity Framework. Generated code for entity types have been refactored.

Over the next few weeks we’ll be posting walkthroughs that dive deeper into each feature.  We also have a few features we plan to release in CTP format in the next few months including an updated POCO code gen template.  Your comments and feedback are most welcome; please give us your comments here, our design blog, through Connect or through the ADO.NET Entity Framework pre-release forums.  Please stay tuned for more news!


The Entity Framework Team