Entity Framework 6 - Npgsql - connection string error

c# connection-string entity-framework-6 heroku npgsql


A tricky (and frustrating problem) - perhaps you folks may be clever enough to solve it:


I want to be able to read/write to my database using Entity Frameworks. I have got a simple app rails running on Heroku (straightforward scaffold). I want to connect to this database and manipulate records. The good news is that I can successfully connect to that database using npgsql. The bad news is that I cannot do it with Entity Frameworks. This is the error I’m receiving:

System.Data.Entity.Core.ProviderIncompatibleException: An error occurred while getting provider information from the database. This can be caused by Entity Framework using an incorrect connection string. Check the inner exceptions for details and ensure that the connection string is correct. ---> System.Data.Entity.Core.ProviderIncompatibleException: The provider did not return a ProviderManifestToken string. ---> System.IO.FileLoadException: Could not load file or assembly 'Npgsql, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=5d8b90d52f46fda7' or one of its dependencies. The located assembly's manifest definition does not match the assembly reference. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80131040)

Here is the stack trace:

   at Npgsql.NpgsqlServices.GetDbProviderManifestToken(DbConnection connection) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Core.Common.DbProviderServices.GetProviderManifestToken(DbConnection connection) 
   --- End of inner exception stack trace --- 
   at System.Data.Entity.Core.Common.DbProviderServices.GetProviderManifestToken(DbConnection connection) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Utilities.DbProviderServicesExtensions.GetProviderManifestTokenChecked(DbProviderServices providerServices, DbConnection connection) 
   --- End of inner exception stack trace --- 
   at System.Data.Entity.Utilities.DbProviderServicesExtensions.GetProviderManifestTokenChecked(DbProviderServices providerServices, DbConnection connection) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Infrastructure.DefaultManifestTokenResolver.<>c__DisplayClass1.<ResolveManifestToken>b__0(Tuple`3 k) 
   at System.Collections.Concurrent.ConcurrentDictionary`2.GetOrAdd(TKey key, Func`2 valueFactory) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Infrastructure.DefaultManifestTokenResolver.ResolveManifestToken(DbConnection connection) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Utilities.DbConnectionExtensions.GetProviderInfo(DbConnection connection, DbProviderManifest& providerManifest) 
   at System.Data.Entity.DbModelBuilder.Build(DbConnection providerConnection) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.LazyInternalContext.CreateModel(LazyInternalContext internalContext) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.RetryLazy`2.GetValue(TInput input) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.LazyInternalContext.InitializeContext() 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.InternalContext.Initialize() 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.InternalContext.GetEntitySetAndBaseTypeForType(Type entityType) 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.Linq.InternalSet`1.Initialize() 
   at System.Data.Entity.Internal.Linq.InternalSet`1.get_InternalContext() 
   at System.Data.Entity.Infrastructure.DbQuery`1.System.Linq.IQueryable.get_Provider() 
   at System.Linq.Queryable.Select[TSource,TResult](IQueryable`1 source, Expression`1 selector) 
   at ge_EntityFrameworkTest.Program.<Test>d__4.MoveNext() in c:\Users\Koshy\Documents\Visual Studio 2013\Projects\Practice\ge-EntityFrameworkTest\ge-EntityFrameworkTest\Program.cs:line 118

Here is my connection string:

NpgsqlConnectionStringBuilder sqlBuilder = new NpgsqlConnectionStringBuilder();
                sqlBuilder.Username = user;
                sqlBuilder.Password = password;
                sqlBuilder.Host = host;
                sqlBuilder.Port = Int32.Parse(port);
                sqlBuilder.Database = database;
                sqlBuilder.Pooling = true;
                sqlBuilder.UseSslStream = true;     
                sqlBuilder.SslMode = Npgsql.SslMode.Require;
                sqlBuilder.TrustServerCertificate = true;

Here is my “Hello world” that I am using to connect and read from my database (from the players table). It is successfully printing: “Lionel Messi” on to the console. Great!

            #region connectingAndReadingDatabase
            using (var conn = new NpgsqlConnection(sqlBuilder.ToString()))
                using (var cmd = new NpgsqlCommand())
                    cmd.Connection = conn;

                    // Retrieve all rows
                    cmd.CommandText = "SELECT * FROM players";
                    using (var reader = cmd.ExecuteReader())
                        while (reader.Read())

The problem is when I try to use Entity Frameworks. It fails massively with a painful error. I am using exactly the same connection string, and cannot for the life of me work out where I’m going wrong. Perhaps you may be able to easily spot the problem?

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Linq;
using System.Text;
using System.Text.RegularExpressions;
using System.Threading.Tasks;
using System.Net.Http;
using Newtonsoft.Json;
using Npgsql;
using System.Data.Entity;
using System.Data.Common;
using System.ComponentModel.DataAnnotations.Schema;
using System.ComponentModel.DataAnnotations;
using System.Configuration;
using System.Data.Entity.ModelConfiguration.Conventions;

// Here is the code pertaining to my hello world entity framework example:

        [Table("players", Schema = "public")]
        public  class Player
            public int id { get; set; }
            public string Name { get; set; }
            public string Team { get; set; }
            public Player() { }

        class NpgsqlConfiguration : System.Data.Entity.DbConfiguration
            public NpgsqlConfiguration()
                SetProviderServices ("Npgsql", Npgsql.NpgsqlServices.Instance);
                SetProviderFactory ("Npgsql", Npgsql.NpgsqlFactory.Instance);
                SetDefaultConnectionFactory (new Npgsql.NpgsqlConnectionFactory ());

        public class PlayerContext : DbContext
            public PlayerContext(DbConnection connection): base(connection, true)

            public DbSet<Player> Players { get; set; }
            protected override void OnModelCreating(DbModelBuilder modelBuilder)


And here is my app.config file

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
    <!-- For more information on Entity Framework configuration, visit http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=237468 -->
    <section name="entityFramework" type="System.Data.Entity.Internal.ConfigFile.EntityFrameworkSection, EntityFramework, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b77a5c561934e089" requirePermission="false" />
    <supportedRuntime version="v4.0" sku=".NETFramework,Version=v4.5" />
    <defaultConnectionFactory type="System.Data.Entity.Infrastructure.LocalDbConnectionFactory, EntityFramework">
        <parameter value="v12.0" />
      <provider invariantName="System.Data.SqlClient" type="System.Data.Entity.SqlServer.SqlProviderServices, EntityFramework.SqlServer" />
      <provider invariantName="Npgsql" type="Npgsql.NpgsqlServices, EntityFramework6.Npgsql" />
    <assemblyBinding xmlns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:asm.v1">
        <assemblyIdentity name="Npgsql" publicKeyToken="5d8b90d52f46fda7" culture="neutral" />
        <bindingRedirect oldVersion="" newVersion="" />
      <add name="Npgsql Data Provider"
            description="Data Provider for PostgreSQL"
            type="Npgsql.NpgsqlFactory, Npgsql" />
    <add name="PlayerContext" connectionString="Username=hjanadgkizjmgf;Password=password;Host=ec2-54-235-250-156.compute-1.amazonaws.com;Port=5432;Database=deek4ap6cf2a1;Pooling=true;Use SSL Stream=True;SSL Mode=Require;TrustServerCertificate=True;" providerName="Npgsql" />

When I pass in a connection string directly - the same one which worked so well to retrieve records earlier, I get this curious exception:

“Keyword not supported ‘username’” – obviously referring to the connection string passed in.

using (var db = new PlayerContext(sqlBuilder.ToString()))
                { // etc }

Also curiously, I receive a warning before compiling:

“Warning 1 Found conflicts between different versions of the same dependent assembly that could not be resolved. These reference conflicts are listed in the build log when log verbosity is set to detailed. pg-EF-test2” perhaps it’s something to do with Npgsql?

Any assistance would be much appreciated.

11/15/2016 1:58:40 AM

Popular Answer

Looks like the "EntityFramework6.Npgsql" nuget package in the current version has incorrectly defined dependencies. It lists "Npgsql (>= 3.1.0)" as a dependency but it actually requires Npgsql in version 3.1.2 or higher.

So the fix is simple - just update the Npgsql package to the latest version. "Update-Package Npgsql" should do the trick.

And as for the context constructor with a string parameter - you got a weird exception because that constructor expects you to pass the name of the connection string from your config file. You should use it like this:

using (var db = new PlayerContext("PlayerContext"))
{ }
11/17/2016 11:09:18 AM

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