Ironically, because we like other ORM products (Dapper, Hibernate, Entity Framework), we saw an opportunity to improve on them. Visit the CodexMicroORM project on GitHub to understand why and how in gory detail: we cover topics such as performance, thread safety, transparent support for useful interfaces such as INotifyPropertyChanged, IDataErrorInfo, dead-simple configuration, service-oriented architecture, interoperability with any pre-existing classes, and more.
CodexMicroORM (aka CEF) is free, available under the Apache 2.0 license. Being built on a pluggable architecture, watch for paid optional extensions and tools including a pure object-oriented database, removing the need to worry about "object-relational mapping" at all - leading to simplified design and excellent in-memory performance. We'll be presenting deep-dive details in our blog. Even if you don't plan on using CEF, we'll be covering interesting data-related topics, so sign-up to get notifications when new articles are published. Get it!
"We dropped CodexMicroORM into an existing project that was using Entity Framework to deal with some performance-critical sections. Works great!"
- Jon, IT Lead
XS Tool Suite
With a history as a tool geared towards SQL Server developers (also known as "SQL-Hero"), XS Tool Suite offers multiple features that can benefit any solution developer. In particular, the code generation engine is rich, battle-tested, fully recursive, language agnostic, automation-friendly, and offers advantages over other similar products.
The tool still has a strong SQL Server legacy, including the ability to audit every single schema (or data!) change (with full-text searching and other advanced reporting options) - both logged and unlogged! Other features include an advanced trace analysis tool, easy-to-understand data (and schema) comparison and scripting, viewing (and optional recording) of the output of DMV health queries (or any query, really!), and a SQL editor with features that seem so obvious and simple you'd wonder why they aren't included in all other products! Examples...
The latest version opens up all product features for use without a static license key: freemium features are pay-as-you-use-them (with a free trial period too). Get it!
"SQL-Hero gives me all the tools I need to quickly get my work done in SQL Server. SQL-Hero saves my company and I money and time at an extremely attractive price point."
- Patrick, Application Manager
xSkrape for SQL Server
Found in the Visual Studio Marketplace, xSkrape for SQL Server allows you to "enable" your SQL databases to access external data, be it through HTTP/HTTPS or file system access. You can query the external data as if it's a live view!
This in turn can eliminate or simplify ETL, while leveraging the declarative XS.QL language: build queries that describe what you want using simple, understandable concepts, working with JSON, XML, HTML, CSV, TSV, and plain text. (Also works seamlessly with Google Sheets.) Run your queries using our infrastructure (with a free usage tier) or your own (self-hosting, inexpensive monthly fees). Get it!
"I built a solution that reads data from both a web API and a web site using one stored procedure, one table, xSkrape, one SQL Agent job, and PowerBI to deliver a dashboard over the data. I got to focus on the data manipulation, not the plubming to get the data. Thanks!"
- Eric, Developer
xSkrape for .NET
If you want to get the functionality we described for the xSkrape for SQL Server product into your own apps, look no further than the packages we've published on NuGet.
If you're okay with using our hosted services, you can start using the xSkrape REST library immediately - available on GitHub and NuGet. (This incurs a per usage cost, with a free tier letting light users get it for free!)
If you'd prefer to host yourself and include it as an in-process library, you can get that as a NuGet package as well. (First month per machine is effectively free, after which you pay a crazy-low cost per machine, per month actually used.) Get it!
xSkrape for Excel
With a look-and-feel remarkably similar to the xSkrape for SQL Server product, xSkrape for Excel lets you consume both structured and unstructured external data sources using the XS.QL language.
With the latest release, we've also added the ability to process data on worksheets using the C# language. No, this isn't traditional VBA scripting! You've got a fully interactive "data playground" that resembles what .NET developers have had for a long time with tools such as LINQPad. We discuss these new features in a blog article that gives examples and step-by-step instructions on installation and usage. Get it!
We're publishing material on GitHub - available to use in your own work, use as learning / reference material - or anything in between.
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