Insight into LINQ and its different components in .NET C# 3.5

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LINQ Components

Because LINQ is so powerful, you should expect to see a lot of systems and products become LINQ
compatible. Virtually any data store would make a good candidate for supporting LINQ queries. This
includes databases, Microsoft’s Active Directory, the registry, the file system, an Excel file, and so on.
Following are the components for usage.

LINQ to Objects
LINQ to Objects is the name given to the IEnumerable<T> API for the Standard Query Operators. It is
LINQ to Objects that allows you to perform queries against arrays and in-memory data collections.
Standard Query Operators are the static methods of the static System.Linq.Enumerable class that you
use to create LINQ to Objects queries.

LINQ to XML is the name given to the LINQ API dedicated to working with XML. This interface was
previously known as XLinq in older prereleases of LINQ. Not only has Microsoft added the necessary
XML libraries to work with LINQ, it has addressed other deficiencies in the standard XML DOM, thereby
making it easier than ever to work with XML. Gone are the days of having to create an XmlDocument
just to work with a small piece of XML. To take advantage of LINQ to XML, you must have a reference to
the System.Xml.Linq.dll assembly in your project and have a using directive such as the following:
using System.Xml.Linq;

LINQ to DataSet
LINQ to DataSet is the name given to the LINQ API for DataSets. Many developers have a lot of existing
code relying on DataSets. Those who do will not be left behind, nor will they need to rewrite their
code to take advantage of the power of LINQ.

LINQ to SQL is the name given to the IQueryable<T> API that allows LINQ queries to work with
Microsoft’s SQL Server database. This interface was previously known as DLinq in older prereleases
of LINQ. To take advantage of LINQ to SQL, you must have a reference to the System.Data.Linq.dll
assembly in your project and have a using directive such as the following:
using System.Data.Linq;

LINQ to Entities
LINQ to Entities is an alternative LINQ API that is used to interface with a database. It decouples the
entity object model from the physical database by injecting a logical mapping between the two. With

this decoupling comes increased power and flexibility, as well as complexity. Because LINQ to Entities
appears to be outside the core LINQ framework, it is not covered in this book. However, if you find
that you need more flexibility than LINQ to SQL permits, it would be worth considering as an alternative.
Specifically, if you need looser coupling between your entity object model and database,
entity objects comprised of data coming from multiple tables, or more flexibility in modeling your
entity objects, LINQ to Entities may be your answer.


Happy Reading for more in-depth knowledge of LINQ  in future blogs.

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