Entity Framework 6 DbSet AddRange vs IDbSet Add - How Can AddRange be so much faster?

c# entity-framework entity-framework-6


I was playing around with Entity Framework 6 on my home computer and decided to try out inserting a fairly large amount of rows, around 430k.

My first try looked like this, yes I know it can be better but it was for research anyway:

var watch = System.Diagnostics.Stopwatch.StartNew();
foreach (var event in group)

var dbCount = db.Events.Count(x => x.ImportInformation.FileName == group.Key);

if (dbCount != group.Count())
    throw new Exception("Mismatch between rows added for file and current number of rows!");

Console.WriteLine($"Added {dbCount} events to database in {watch.Elapsed.ToString()}");

Started it in the evening and checked back when I got home from work. This was the result:

enter image description here

As you can see 64523 events were added in the first 4 hours and 41 minutes but then it got a lot slower and the next 66985 events took 14 hours and 51 minutes. I checked the database and the program was still inserting events but at an extremely low speed. I then decided to try the "new" AddRange method for DbSet.

I switched my models from IDbSet to DbSet and replaced the foreach loop with this:


enter image description here

I could now add 60k+ events in around 30 seconds. It is perhaps not SqlBulkCopy fast but it is still a huge improvement. What is happening under the hood to achieve this? I thought I was gonna check SQL Server Profiler tomorrow for queries but It would be nice with an explanation what happens in code as well.

4/26/2017 8:11:05 PM

Accepted Answer

As Jakub answered, calling SaveChanges after every added entity was not helping. But you would still get some performance problems even if you move it out. That will not fix the performance issue caused by the Add method.

Add vs AddRange

That's a very common error to use the Add method to add multiple entities. In fact, it's the DetectChanges method that's INSANELY slow.

  • The Add method DetectChanges after every record added.
  • The AddRange method DetectChanges after all records are added.

See: Entity Framework - Performance Add

It is perhaps not SqlBulkCopy fast, but it is still a huge improvement

It's possible to get performance VERY close to SqlBulkCopy.

Disclaimer: I'm the owner of the project Entity Framework Extensions

(This library is NOT free)

This library can make your code more efficient by allowing you to save multiples entities at once. All bulk operations are supported:

  • BulkSaveChanges
  • BulkInsert
  • BulkUpdate
  • BulkDelete
  • BulkMerge
  • BulkSynchronize


// Easy to use

// Easy to customize
context.BulkSaveChanges(bulk => bulk.BatchSize = 100);

// Perform Bulk Operations

// Customize Primary Key
context.BulkMerge(customers, operation => {
   operation.ColumnPrimaryKeyExpression = 
        customer => customer.Code;
8/22/2018 10:25:09 PM

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