In this article I will explain a simple tutorial with an example, how to retrieve data from database in ASP.Net MVC 5 Razor using Entity Framework.
This article will explain how to configure Entity Framework and connect to SQL Server database and finally the retrieved data (records) from database and display it in View in ASP.Net MVC 5 Razor.
 
Note: For beginners in ASP.Net MVC, please refer my article ASP.Net MVC Hello World Tutorial with Sample Program example.
 
 
Database
Here I am making use of Microsoft’s Northwind Database. You can download it from here.
Download and install Northwind Database
 
 

Configuring and connecting Entity Framework to database
Now I will explain the steps to configure and add Entity Framework and also how to connect it with the database.
You will need to add Entity Data Model to your project by right clicking the Solution Explorer and then click on Add and then New Item option of the Context Menu.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
From the Add New Item window, select ADO.NET Entity Data Model and set its Name as NorthwindModel and then click Add.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
Then the Entity Data Model Wizard will open up where you need to select EF Designer database option.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
Now the wizard will ask you to connect and configure the Connection String to the database.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
 
You will need to select the
1.     SQL Server Instance
2.     Database
And then click Test Connection to make sure all settings are correct.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
Once the Connection String is generated, click Next button to move to the next step.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
Next you will need to choose the Entity Framework version to be used for connection.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
Now you will need to choose the Tables you need to connect and work with Entity Framework. Here Customers Table is selected.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
The above was the last step and you should now have the Entity Data Model ready with the Customers Table of the Northwind Database.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
 
 
Controller
The Entity Framework is now configured and hence now we can create a Controller and write code to fetch the records from the Customers Table of the Northwind Database.
Inside the Index Action method, the Top 10 Customer records are fetched and returned to the View.
public class HomeController : Controller
{
    // GET: Home
    public ActionResult Index()
    {
        NorthwindEntities entities = new NorthwindEntities();
        return View(from customer in entities.Customers.Take(10)
                    select customer);
    }
}
 
 
View
Now you will need to Right Click inside the Controller class and click on the Add View option in order to create a View for the Controller.
The Name of the View is set to Index, the Template option is set to Empty, the Model class is set to Customer Entity (the one we have generated using Entity Framework) and finally the Data context class is set to NorthwindEntities.
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
Inside the View, in the very first line the Customer Entity is declared as IEnumerable which specifies that it will be available as a Collection.
For displaying the records, an HTML Table is used. A loop will be executed over the Model which will generate the HTML Table rows with the Customer records.
@model IEnumerable<Entity_Framework_MVC.Customer>
 
@{
    Layout = null;
}
 
<!DOCTYPE html>
 
<html>
<head>
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width"/>
    <title>Index</title>
</head>
<body>
    <h4>Customers</h4>
    <hr/>
    <table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0">
        <tr>
            <th>CustomerID</th>
            <th>ContactName</th>
            <th>City</th>
            <th>Country</th>
        </tr>
        @foreach (Customer customer in Model)
        {
            <tr>
                <td>@customer.CustomerID</td>
                <td>@customer.ContactName</td>
                <td>@customer.City</td>
                <td>@customer.Country</td>
            </tr>
        }
    </table>
</body>
</html>
 
 
Screenshot
ASP.Net MVC: Retrieve data from database using Entity Framework
 
 
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