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 Venice, 2009

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Greetings here in my blog!
My name is Alexander Galkin. I was born 1979 in Kazan, Russia, where I graduated in child medicine.
Since 2001 I live in Hamburg, Germany and work as a freelancer software and database architect and trainer for Microsoft technologies.

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Sample databases for SQL Azure that support Entity Framework

While working on my tutorials for SQL Azure as backend for LightSwitch I bumped into the problem that the SQL Azure sample database AdventureWorks is not (fully) supported by the latest version of Entity Framework (EF5). This has the consequence that one cannot create the Data Context for the whole database that would be a prerequisite for all frameworks using EF for data access (besides LightSwitch, ASP.NET Dynamic Data application would be also impacted).

In my case I only needed a demo database, so I just found the old good Nordwind database for SQL2000, installed it locally and migrated to SQL Azure instance. Then I could easily create the Data Context in EF5 and implement sample applications in LightSwitch.

So, summing up my experience, as long as you need a sample database running on Azure, you might

  1. Take the SQL Azure version of AdventureWorks here, you might need to exclude some tables from Database Model, however, to get this database working under Entity Framwork 5.
  2. You can use the "old good" Nordwind, download a legacy version for SQL2000 from MS page and migrate it towards SQL Azure.
  3. Use some other sample database, like Chinook and use them. Chinook provides full support for EF5, or, in other words, EF5 supports everything Chinook implements.

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