1.2 Overview of Oracle Data Provider for .NET (ODP.NET)

Oracle Data Provider for .NET (ODP.NET) is an implementation of a .NET data provider for Oracle Database, using and inheriting from classes and interfaces available in the Microsoft .NET Framework Class Library.

Following the .NET Framework, ODP.NET uses the ADO.NET model, which allows native providers to expose provider-specific features and data types. This is similar to Oracle Provider for OLE DB, where ADO (ActiveX Data Objects) provides an automation layer that exposes an easy programming model. ADO.NET provides a similar programming model, but without the automation layer, for better performance.

Oracle Data Provider for .NET uses Oracle native APIs to offer fast and reliable access to Oracle data and features from any .NET application. ODP.NET consists of two drivers: ODP.NET, Managed Driver and ODP.NET, Unmanaged Driver. ODP.NET, Managed Driver is a fully managed ADO.NET provider, consisting of fewer DLLs and smaller install size than ODP.NET, Unmanaged Driver. The managed driver has the same exact application programming interfaces (APIs) as ODP.NET, Unmanaged Driver. However, the managed driver's APIs are a subset of the Unmanaged Driver's APIs.

The ODP.NET classes described in this guide are contained in the Oracle.DataAccess.dll and Oracle.ManagedDataAccess.dll assembly.

  • Client Applications: All ODP.NET classes are available for use in client applications.

    As ODP.NET, Managed Driver does not support all classes and members in the ODP.NET, Unmanaged Driver, the unsupported managed driver classes and members will be labeled Not Supported in ODP.NET, Managed Driver.

  • .NET Stored Procedures: Most ODP.NET classes can be used from within .NET stored procedures and functions. Those classes which cannot, are labeled Not Supported in a .NET Stored Procedure. Additionally, some classes contain members which may not be supported, and this is so indicated in the member tables that follow the class descriptions, and listed in Chapter 4 of this guide.