The main difference between DBContext and ObjectContext is that DBContext is a wrapper of the ObjectContext and denotes the most commonly used features of the ObejctContext, while the ObejctContext is a part of the core Entity Framework API that allows performing operations on the database using strongly typed entity classes.
Generally, it is necessary to connect an application with a database. Programmers can develop an application in any programming language. Even though most programming languages provide libraries with methods to interact with the databases, it can be a difficult process. It is because, the program has objects, but we need SQL queries to perform operations on the database. An alternative to this issue is to use Entity Framework. Entity Framework is an Object Relational Mapper (ORM) that allows the programmer to map the object of the .NET application to the tables and columns of a relational database. In overall, DBContext and ObjectContext are two concepts related to Entity Framework.
Key Areas Covered
Code First, Database First, DBContext, Entity, ObjectContext
What is DBContext
DBContext is a lightweight alternative to the ObjectContext. In other words, it is an ObjectContext wrapper. The programmer can use DbContext for Database first, Code first, and model first development approaches. Moreover, DBContext mainly consists of a collection of APIs that are easy to use. And, the ObejctContext helps to expose these APIs. Also, these APIs allow the programmer to use a Code First approach that ObejctContext does not allow.
What is ObejctContext
ObjectContext is a class that is used to manage database operations such as database connection and management of different entities of the Entity model. In other words, ObejctContext is the basis or primary class that allows accessing and working with entities defined in the conceptual model. Moreover, an ObjectContext consist of a connection to the data source (or database), metadata in the Entity Data Model (EDM), and Object State Manager to monitor the modifications made to the objects.
In overall, ObjectContext performs multiple tasks. Firstly, it handles the database connection. Secondly, it consists of built-in functionalities to perform adding, updating and deleting. Furthermore, it provides the state of pending changes and stores the changes made to entities.
Difference Between DBContext and ObjectContext
DBContext is a wrapper of ObjectContext that exposes the most commonly used features of ObjectContext. In contrast, Object Context is a class of the core Entity framework API that allows performing queries and tracking the updates made to a database using strongly typed entity classes. Thus, this is the main difference between DBContext and ObjectContext.
However, the DBContext does not support Compiled Queries, whereas ObjectContext supports Compiled Queries. Hence, this is another difference between DBContext and ObjectContext.
Tracking/Monitoring the Entities
Moreover, DBContext does not support self-tracking of Entities while ObjectContext supports self-tracking of Entities.
Besides, a programmer can use DBContext with Entity framework 4.1 and above, whereas the programmer can use ObjectConext with Entity Framework 4.0 and below.
Furthermore, DBContext is used with Model First, Database First, and Code First approaches. On the other hand, ObjectContext is used only with Model First, and Database-First approaches.
Also, another difference between DBContext and ObjectContext is that the DBContext provides thread safety for public static and shared members, whereas ObjectContext does not provide thread safety.
In overall, DBContext and ObjectContext provide capabilities to query and work with data as objects. The main difference between DBContext and ObjectContext is that DBContext is a wrapper of ObjectContext and denotes most commonly used features of ObejctContext, while ObejctContext is a part of core Entity Framework API that allows in performing operations on the database using strongly typed entity classes. In brief, we can consider that DBContext and ObjectContext are conceptually similar.
1.“Context Class in Entity Framework.” Context Class in Entity Framework, Available here.
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