About dotConnect Universal

Provide access to major database servers from your .NET application.

dotConnect Universal offers universal access to data from different databases for the Microsoft .NET Framework. It supports most major database servers, including Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Access (Professional Edition only), Oracle, DB2, MySQL, PostgreSQL, InterBase, and Firebird. Other servers can be accessed through their ADO.NET, OLE DB and ODBC providers. The main feature of dotConnect Universal is an access to multiple database servers with the same code. With dotConnect Universal it is possible to avoid writing conditional code for different providers or using ADO.NET interfaces directly. dotConnect Universal implements full support of design-time development and integration with your IDE, which reduces development time.

dotConnect Universal doesn't implement a database specific access layer for all databases, it uses native ADO.NET providers and depends on their functionality. The Professional Edition of dotConnect Universal includes bundled data providers for Oracle, MySQL and PostgreSQL. For all other servers you need a native data provider.

dotConnect Universal provides functionality for connecting to a database, executing commands, and retrieving results. These results can be processed directly or placed in an ADO.NET DataSet for further processing in a disconnected state. While in the DataSet, data can be exposed to the user, combined with other data from multiple sources, or passed remotely between tiers. Any processing performed on the data in the DataSet can then be reconciled with the database.

There are core classes that make up dotConnect Universal data provider:

  • UniConnection - Establishes a connection to the database server and begins a transaction
  • UniCommand - Executes SQL statements and stored procedures at database, and exposes parameters
  • UniDataReader - Exposes and reads a forward-only stream of data from the database
  • UniDataAdapter - Populates a DataSet and resolves updates with the database
  • UniTransaction - Manages database transactions
  • UniParameter - Defines input, output, and return value parameters for commands and stored procedures
  • UniException - Returned when an error is encountered on a database

Along with the core classes listed in the preceding table, dotConnect Universal also contains classes extending its base functionality and allowing to accomplish additional tasks:

  • UniCommandBuilder - A helper object that will automatically generate command properties of UniDataAdapter and populate the UniParameter collection of UniCommand object
  • UniConnectionStringBuilder - Designed to construct a connection string by assigning values to appropriate properties
  • UniMonitor - Monitors dynamic SQL execution in applications that use dotConnect Universal
  • UniProvider - Represents a custom ADO .NET data provider which can be used with dotConnect Universal provider
  • UniScript - Executes series of SQL statements separated by special symbols

Key features

  • Universal access to data of different databases
  • Supports all major databases
  • Supports most of the popular ADO.NET providers
  • 100% managed code
  • High performance
  • Bundled data providers for Oracle, MySQL and PostgreSQL
  • UniSQL for writing server-independent queries
  • Provider-specific types infrastructure
  • Fill DataSet with several CURSOR for Oracle Database
  • Asynchronous execution support
  • DataSet Wizard to leverage design-time setup
  • Generate DataSet Wizard
  • Support for Data Access Application Block in Enterprise Library
  • ASP.NET data providers: Membership provider, Role provider, Session State provider, Profile provider
  • Easy to deploy
  • Base-Class-Based provider model
  • .NET Compact Framework support
  • Advanced connection pooling
  • UniScript component to execute scripts
  • Ability to retrieve metadata information
  • Ability of monitoring query and stored procedures execution
  • Advanced design-time editors
  • Easy migration from SQL Server, OLE DB, ODBC and Oracle Data Providers with Migration Wizard
  • Help integrated into Visual Studio and Delphi

Supported providers

dotConnect Universal Data Provider is shipped with support for sets of ADO.NET providers. The Professional Edition of dotConnect Universal includes the OraDirect .NET, MySQLDirect .NET, and PostgreSQLDirect .NET data providers.

Provider Description

  • .NET Framework Data Provider for SQL Server – Uses its own protocol to communicate with SQL Server. It is lightweight and performs well because it is optimized to access a SQL Server directly without adding an OLE DB or Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) layer
  • .NET Framework Data Provider for OLE DB -  Usesnative OLE DB through COM interop to enable data access (Professional Edition Only)
  • .NET Framework Data Provider for ODBC - Uses native ODBC Driver Manager through COM interop to enable data access
  • .NET Framework Data Provider for Oracle - Enables data access to Oracle data sources through Oracle client connectivity software.
  • Microsoft Access Provider - The provider for MS Access enables data access to Microsoft Access data sources through OLE DB. Recommended for single-tier applications using Microsoft Access databases (Professional Edition only)
  • OraDirect .NET Data Provider- Provides direct access to Oracle database server with or without the Oracle Call Interface (OCI). The data provider supports Oracle Client software version 8.0 and later
  • MySQLDirect .NET Data Provider - MySQLDirect .NET is data provider to direct access to MySQL database server for the Microsoft .NET Framework. Data provider can access MySQL server either using native MySQL network protocol directly or through MySQL client library
  • PostgreSQLDirect .NET Data Provider - Provides direct access to PostgreSQL database for the Microsoft .NET Framework. Data provider uses native message-based protocol for communication with PostgreSQL database server
  • Oracle Data Provider for .NET - Enables data access to Oracle data sources through Oracle client connectivity software. The data provider supports Oracle client software version 9.2 and later
  • IBM DB2.NET Data Provider - Allows your .NET applications to access DB2 Universal Database on Windows, UNIX, and Linux-based computers.
  • Firebird ADO.NET Provider - The .NET Data Provider for Firebird and InterBase databases.

Any provider not listed here still can be used with dotConnect Universal. Refer to dotConnect Universal and Arbitrary Data Providers topic in the documentation.

Editions

dotConnect Universal has two editions: Professional and Mobile. Professional edition includes additional classes, design-time extensions and wizards. Mobile edition is for .NET Compact Framework. Note that Professional edition is shipped with built-in data providers for Oracle, MySQL and PostgreSQL.

Mobile

  • .NET Compact Framework support
  • ADO.NET core classes
  • Native data types classes and structures
  • UniCommandBuilder class
  • UniScript class
  • UniMonitor class
  • Design-time features, including component editors and property editors

Professional

  • .NET Framework support
  • ADO.NET core classes
  • Native data types classes and structures
  • UniCommandBuilder class
  • UniScript class
  • UniMonitor class
  • Bundled data providers for Oracle, MySQL and PostgreSQL
  • Enterprise Library support
  • ASP.NET providers support
  • Design-time features, including component editors and property editors
  • Advanced Visual Studio .NET integration (Server Explorer and other features)
  • Dataset Wizard
  • Migration Wizard
  • DBMonitor support