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Microsoft to Release Fix for Entity Framework Bug

Microsoft is releasing an update to Entity Framework next week to squash a bug that's causing errors for some users.

The bug, according to a blog posting from EF Program Manager Rowan Miller, "...affects third party EF providers using a generic class for their provider factory implementation, things such as WrappingProviderFactory<TProvider>." This could result in Visual Studio blowing you a raspberry in the form of a message about invalid assembly names or codebases.

In a refreshing bit of candor, Miller admitted that Microsoft introduced the bug with EF 4.1, Update 1. He lists no workarounds, stating that the only solution is to stay at 4.1 and skip the update.

He goes on to note a naming convention change. Instead of calling this "EF 4.1 Update 2", they're going with the streamlined "EF 4.2". Miller also says that this is the only change between 4.1 and 4.2. Normally, a single alteration wouldn't require such a name upgrade, but this appears to be the case going forward, he states, "to get onto the semantic versioning path."

The beta for EF 4.2 is expected sometime next week, according to Miller, with an RTM version in September, assuming a smooth beta period. The beta will be part of the EntityFramework.Preview NuGet package.

One thing about Microsoft: they're more transparent than most companies about bugs in their products. They've learned, through hard experience over the years, that customers are forgiving, if you let them know about the problem. It's keeping them in the dark that really stirs up the hornet's nest.

Posted by Keith Ward on 08/12/2011

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