Find a generic DbSet in a DbContext dynamically

.net c# entity-framework-core


I know this question has already been asked but I couldn't find an answer that satisfied me. What I am trying to do is to retrieve a particular DbSet<T> based on its type's name.

I have the following :

[assembly: System.Runtime.CompilerServices.InternalsVisibleTo("MyDllAssemblyName")]
[assembly: System.Runtime.CompilerServices.InternalsVisibleTo("MyCallingAssemblyName")]

class MyDbContext : DbContext {

    public DbSet<ModelA> A { get; set; }
    public DbSet<ModelB> B { get; set; }

    public dynamic GetByName_SwitchTest(string name) {
        switch (name) {
            case "A": return A;
            case "B": return B;

    public dynamic GetByName_ReflectionTest(string fullname)
        Type targetType = Type.GetType(fullname);
        var model = GetType()
            .Where(o => 
                o.PropertyType.IsGenericType &&
                o.PropertyType.GetGenericTypeDefinition() == typeof(DbSet<>) &&
        if (null != model)
            return model.GetValue(this);
        return null;

I have no trouble getting the type itself whether it is via a simple switch or reflection. I need however to return the type as a dynamic since I do not know what DbSet type it will be. Then somewhere else in the same assembly, I use it this way :

// MyDbContext MyDbContextInstance..
var model = MyDbContextInstance.GetByName_SwitchTest("A");
var record1 = model.FirstOrDefault(); // It crashes here with RunTimeBinderException

At this point model contains an instance of a InternalDbSet<ModelA> type. From there, any use I do with the model object I get a RunTimeBinderException : 'Microsoft.Data.Entity.Internal.InternalDbSet' does not contain a definition for 'FirstOrDefault'

Investigating on the web, I found a blog post explaining that (dixit his blog) :

the reason the call to FirstOrDefault() fails is that the type information of model is not available at runtime. The reason it's not available is because anonymous types are not public. When the method is returning an instance of that anonymous type, it's returning a System.Object which references an instance of an anonymous type - a type whose info isn't available to the main program.

And then he points that a solution :

The solution is actually quite simple. All we have to do is open up AssemplyInfo.cs of the ClassLibrary1 project and add the following line to it: [assembly:InternalsVisibleTo("assembly-name")]

I did try this solution on my code but it doesn't work. For info I have an 5 solution with two assemblies running on dnx dotnet46. An app and a dll containing all my models and DbContext. All the concerned calls I do are located on the dll though.

Does this solution have any chance to work ? Am I missing something ? Any pointers would be greatly appreciated ?

Thanks in advance


I have tried to return IQueryable<dynamic> rather than dynamic and I could do the basic query model.FirstOrDefault(); but above all I'd like to be able to filter on a field too :

var record = model.FirstOrDefault(item => item.MyProperty == true);

Popular Answer

So how did I do it when I am not aware of <T> during compile time.

First need to get the type as DbContext.Set method returns a non-generic DbSet instance for access to entities of the given type in the context and the underlying store.

public virtual DbSet Set(Type entityType)

Note here argument is the type of entity for which a set should be returned.And set for the given entity type is the return value.

var type = Assembly.GetExecutingAssembly().GetTypes().FirstOrDefault(t => t.Name == <Pass your table name>);

now once I have this type

if(type != null)
DbSet context = context.Set(type);

Or a one liner would be

DbSet mySet = context.Set(Type.GetType("<Your Entity Name>"));

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