Sunday, January 2, 2011

Connecting MySQL to Visual Studio 2010

Your database servers are MySQL and yet you need to build an application in .Net; is that possible? Yes. MySQL Connector/NET enables developers to easily create .NET applications using C#/Visual Basic with connecting to MySQL databases. MySQL connector is responsible for creating necessary ADO.NET interfaces and integrations to ADO.NET tools. Therefore developers can build applications using MySQL just as they usually build database applications.

Picture 1


  • Visual Studio 2010
  • MySQL database – You have to install MySQL Community Server which is the feely available version of the MySQL server.
  • MySQL admin tools – These tools enable you to work with MySQL through a GUI. You can either use phpmyadmin or MySQL Workbench
  • MySQL Connector - Install MySQL Connector for .Net which is basically a .Net library to support MySQL

As the first step check whether all the above required software are installed in your machine. If you have them, no problem, you are good to go! But, before you install MySQL Connect for .Net, make sure that you close any running Visual Studio instance.

There are different MySQL Connector/NET versions available, and they support Visual Studio versions from 2005, 2008, to 2010. But however, only MySQL Connector/NET version 6.3 (latest version up to now) fully integrates with Visual Studio 2010.

If you don’t have any MySQL database in your computer, create a simple database and a table fill with few rows of data. In this example I have created a database called  `test_dotnet`.

Then open Visual Studio 2010, and create a new project. Now’s the time to add connection to the MySQL database you created in the above step. First go to the “Data” menu and select “Add New Data Source…”. See Picture 1.

Select “Database” as the Data source type.

In the next step select “Dataset” as the database model.

In the next window press “New Connection”. If you have already build a connection to the same database in a different project, the database connection will be available in the drop down list. But since we are doing this for the first time we have to create a new one.

Select the “MySQL Database” and press continue.

In the “Add Connection” window give your username, password and the server name. Finally select the database name from the drop down list.

In the next few steps you will have to give names for the connection and the dataset. So that’s all what you have to do. If everything happen according to the order, your database should now be visible in the Server Explorer. (View –> Server Explorer). Now you can do anything with your database like editing, creating new tables and modifying..etc.

Those are the steps to connect a MySQL data base in to your.Net application. After creating the connection you can use it to display, store and manipulate data in your application.


  1. Thank you so much. This is just what I've been looking for. Now I'll be able to access my database from the C# application I've been developing.

  2. I have followed all the steps you show above but MySQL Database does not show on the Choose Data Source box that you show above.
    What could be wrong?
    Thanks for your help!

  3. Hi Dave,
    Most probably, that could be a problem of your "MySQL Connector/NET" installation. Try reinstalling it OR try the latest version if you're not using it yet.

  4. Hi Kalana,

    Seems I am in more problem than Dave.. When I click Data in Visual Studio 2010 I get only Transact SQL-Editor and Schema View. What should I do ?

  5. Hi,
    Sorry for the late reply. I was busy with some other stuff.
    When you open a database project in VS2010,you can simply switch between "Solution Explorer" view and "Schema view" using the small icons in the top of solution explorer. And Transact-SQL editor is for executing database queries, editing database objects and scripts... etc.

    However it would be great if you can specify your question a little bit :)

  6. Hi..
    Can i use wampserver instead of MySQL community server? In that case my wampserver is running on port 8080. So where i should configure it? Please be kind enough to explain this.
    Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi, If you want to change the port used by wampserver, you must locate the httpd.conf file (which usually resides at C:\wamp\bin\apache\Apache X.X.XX\conf) and find and replace the line "Listen 8080" with your desired port.

  7. Hi Kalana...need your help.
    I get the add connection box after selecting MySQL...but aftr typing even a single letter,the window vanishes abruptly.
    What can i do to resolve this prob??

    1. Have you solve the problem? I have te same issue.

    2. Rhicha have you solved your problem, i've got the same.

  8. hi kalana i really can see mySql data connection i've tried everything installing and uninstalling the connect but still problems. please help am using window 7 ultimate.

    1. Hi, Could you please be bit more specific about the problem? Were you able to create the connection?
      And I've also used Windows 7 for the given example.

  9. can we use these models with Web applications?

    1. Yes. Ideally you can.
      After you create the connection with the MySQL database and create your 'DataSet' or 'Entity Data Model' you will be able to use those data sources in your application.

  10. i have done everything above but it displays an error message which says that The system detected an invalid pointer address in attempting to use a pointer argument in a call. Pliz help am stuck

  11. hi Kalana,

    I have the connector installed and running VS2010. I can see the mysql wehn I try to add new connection but when I enter my servers name ( hosted by my isp) and username / password. it tells me that it can not retrieve the list of databases. I know that the username / password is correct. I read somewhere that the remote access on the server must be enabled. how do I do this?

    Do I need to use http:// in front of the server's name?

    Thank you in advance,


  12. i want mysql to work with visual basic....i want to make an inventory management system to automatically update the manager through mobile when the stock needs to be ordered. needs codes


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