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Posted 17 Nov 2002

SQL Stored Procedure Wrapper & Typed DataSet Generator for .NET

, 7 Dec 2002
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This a small tool that will generate static methods in a class that acts as wrapper for SQL stored procedures. It either outputs a source file or a compiled assembly. Also supports automatic DataSet generation.

What is this?

DBHelper is a small tool that will generate either a source file or a compiled assembly for selected stored procedures on your SQL server. It uses the CodeDom namespace to output the code. Currently it supports C# and VB.NET code generation (and other language support is likely in the future), but the generated assembly is usable from any .NET language. Also included in version 1.5 is the ability to compile a complete assembly that includes a typed DataSet based on your SQL stored procedures output.

Basically, this is an all-in-one tool for wrapping a SQL database. Great for existing databases, and for rapidly changing databases. E.g. changes gets made to stored procedure's parameters or the output of stored procedures. No problem for DBHelper, just a few clicks and you a have all the methods remapped/DataSet regenerated. All you have to do it adjust your corresponding .NET methods.

NOTE: DBNulls are still not supported. I'm still looking for a way. The alternative is to still generate the source file and the XSD file, and change all the method parameters from their strong type to System.Object. That's all! Hopefully there wont be too many!

New information (version 1.5+)

As of version 1.4, the package comes as a tool rather than a library. Please select the SQL provider (no others will work and I have NO plans to support it). If you tick Create, it will create a corresponding method, and CreateStrong will generate an XSD for strongly typed DataSet/Tables.

Also note VS.NET is NO longer required for typed DataSet generation and compilation (overlooked a static method).

Version 1.6 includes plenty code optimization. Also, typed datasets now get created based on return values. The is no more option to select which ones you want. I have tested it successfully on the MASTER database.


Some people might ask "Why?". The answer is sweet. Take the following for example:

Every time you even want to execute a simple stored procedure you need something like the following:

SqlCommand cmd = new SqlCommand();
cmd.Connection = connection;
cmd.CommandText = "ChangeEmail";
cmd.CommandType = CommandType.StoredProcedure;
cmd.Parameters.Add("@id", SqlDbType.BigInt).Value = id_param;
cmd.Parameters.Add("@oldemail", SqlDbType.VarChar).Value = oldemail_param;
cmd.Parameters.Add("@newemail", SqlDbType.VarChar).Value = newemail_param;

Now that's only 3 parameters, how about some nasty UPDATE procedures with 10+ parameters? That can be a real time waster, especially doing all the type mapping by hand. On the other hand you could always go for DataSets, and let VS.NET do the work. My personal liking is to use DataSets only for SELECT queries and I usually do all the other statements via SqlCommand's as above. The library will generate all the required parameters and present you with a strongly typed wrapper method for the stored procedure.

UPDATE: I have now updated the library to return a DataTable of the output. For example:

public static DataTable ChangeEmail(SqlConnection connection
    DataTable table, long id_param, 
    string oldemail_param, string newemail_param)

The code from the former example is automatically inserted into a class of choice. Now that looks a lot better, and will probably save you countless hours.

How does it work?

These methods are a bit redundant as of version 1.4 as it run as a tool rather than a library. Firstly your database will be queried for stored procedures. After that we get the name and type of the parameters for each procedure. With the help of CodeDom we create a new class to output to a source file or an assembly.


  • SP(SqlConnection conn, CodeDomProvider cp);

    Just a reference to a predefined SqlConnection. See example for CodeDomProvider usage.

    E.g. SP sp = new SP(myConnection, new CSharpCodeProvider);


  • public SPCollection Names;

    Returns a strongly typed string collection of all the stored procedure names. This allows you to remove the ones you don't need methods for (as in the UI example).


  • public CompilerResults Compile(string ns, string classname, string asmname);

    Compiles to an assembly (asmname) using values from Names property to generate. Returns results (primarily for debugging).

  • public CompilerResults Compile(string[] storedprocs, string ns, string classname, string asmname);

    Compiles to an assembly (asmname) with own defined string array of stored procedures to generate. Returns results (primarily for debugging).

  • public void CreateFile(string[] storedprocs, string ns, string classname, string filename);

    Same as compiler, but will output source file.

  • public void CreateFile(string ns, string classname, string filename);

    Same as compiler, but will output source file.


I use a very, very simple mapping from SqlDbType to Type and DBNull values are not supported either in this release.

For the test app to work you will need to change the SqlConnection to your linking.

Free plug

Kristopher Johnson - Typed Collection Class Generator for creating all the collections and dictionaries in DBHelper (although the CodeDom code was not looked at).


This was really my first successful use of CodeDom and it seems really powerful, especially if you use it correctly as output to any language should be possible. As usual, bugs, problems, praise, suggestions, gifts can be added below.

UPDATE: I have created support for VB.NET code as well.

Cheers :)


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The BSD License


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Comments and Discussions

GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
versteijn22-Jul-03 9:52
memberversteijn22-Jul-03 9:52 
GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
leppie22-Jul-03 10:10
memberleppie22-Jul-03 10:10 
GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
versteijn29-Jul-03 9:10
memberversteijn29-Jul-03 9:10 
GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
leppie29-Jul-03 10:40
memberleppie29-Jul-03 10:40 
GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
Jonathan de Halleux29-Aug-03 1:07
memberJonathan de Halleux29-Aug-03 1:07 
GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
quincykong23-May-04 23:46
memberquincykong23-May-04 23:46 
GeneralRe: Exception running example program Pin
MrFishy21-Jan-05 2:11
memberMrFishy21-Jan-05 2:11 
GeneralUsing with IDENTITY Field Pin
Daniel Bright25-May-03 10:55
memberDaniel Bright25-May-03 10:55 
In one of my Stored Procs I'm writing to a table with a PK field that has IDENTITY. When I try to use the code generated by DBHelper it asks me for a "ref int" value for this field.

How do I tell the SP that the field is the IDENTITY and it autonumbers for me?

I cant figure out what to pass to the method to get it to work.

Dan B

GeneralRe: Using with IDENTITY Field Pin
leppie25-May-03 11:12
memberleppie25-May-03 11:12 
GeneralRe: Using with IDENTITY Field Pin
Daniel Bright25-May-03 15:21
memberDaniel Bright25-May-03 15:21 
Generalissue with image data type parameter Pin
andy_net18-May-03 4:23
memberandy_net18-May-03 4:23 
GeneralRe: issue with image data type parameter Pin
leppie8-May-03 8:36
memberleppie8-May-03 8:36 
Generalsql server 7.0 fix Pin
Vorn Mom14-Apr-03 13:22
memberVorn Mom14-Apr-03 13:22 
GeneralLeppie Pin
Paul Evans31-Mar-03 0:25
memberPaul Evans31-Mar-03 0:25 
GeneralAdded output and return parameters Pin
Andreas Gratz20-Mar-03 3:21
sussAndreas Gratz20-Mar-03 3:21 
Generalbug in xsd Pin
uarndt14-Mar-03 4:18
memberuarndt14-Mar-03 4:18 
GeneralRe: bug in xsd Pin
leppie14-Mar-03 21:39
memberleppie14-Mar-03 21:39 
QuestionHow to Use?? Pin
shobapond22-Jan-03 15:57
membershobapond22-Jan-03 15:57 
AnswerRe: How to Use?? Pin
bwical26-Feb-03 8:20
memberbwical26-Feb-03 8:20 
GeneralRe: How to Use?? Pin
leppie26-Feb-03 8:32
memberleppie26-Feb-03 8:32 
AnswerRe: How to Use?? Pin
leppie26-Feb-03 8:29
memberleppie26-Feb-03 8:29 
GeneralSimilar project... Pin
Mauricio Ritter19-Dec-02 1:01
memberMauricio Ritter19-Dec-02 1:01 
GeneralRe: Similar project... Pin
leppie19-Dec-02 7:13
memberleppie19-Dec-02 7:13 
GeneralExecute Only SP's Pin
OldRob26-Nov-02 8:28
memberOldRob26-Nov-02 8:28 
GeneralRe: Execute Only SP's Pin
leppie26-Nov-02 11:43
memberleppie26-Nov-02 11:43 

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