How to connect to MySQL database from Visual Studio VS2010 – problems with NET connectors


I have developed a Windows Application in Visual Studio 2008 some years ago and now it has been updated in Visual Studio 2010.

The application connects to a MySQL database and after porting it to VS2010, the IDE does not show the connection to the MySQL in Server Explorer. Also when trying to add the data connection, in the Choose Data Source window it does not show the MySQL Database.The MySQL connector (an older version – was installed and the reference to MySql.Data namespace was added. There were no problems compiling the project, just VS2010 could not see the connector when trying to create a new Data connection.

This is a compatibility problem between VS2010 and MySQL connector. The same problem has been reported also for the MySql Connector/Net 6.2.2.

The problem seems that has been solved with the release of the MySql Connector/Net 6.3.4. But this version has another problem.The MySQL connector does not work on Windows XP, only on Windows 7. In my case I could not install the connector (the installation wizard failed). So solving this problem you could not install the application on Windows XP because it will not find the required connector. This problem has another solution: How to deploy .NET applications that use modules with different version than the development ones

So, in order to connect to a MySql database from VS2010 you need to

  • download the latest version of the MySql Connector/NET from
  • install the connector (if you have an older version you need to remove it from Control Panel -> Add / Remove Programs)
  • open Visual Studio 2010
  • open Server Explorer Window (View -> Server Explorer)
Visual Studio 2010 - Server Explorer window

Visual Studio 2010 - Server Explorer window

  • use Connect to Database button
  • in the Choose Data Source windows select MySql Database and press Continue
VS2010 - MySQL DataSource

VS2010 - MySQL DataSource

  • in the Add Connection window
    • set server name: or localhost for MySql server running on local machine or an IP address for a remote server
    • username and password
    • if the the above data is correct and the connection can be made, you have the possibility to select the database
VS2010 MySQL Connection properties

VS2010 MySQL Connection properties

If you want to connect to a MySql database from a C# application (Windows or Web) you can use the next sequence:

//define the connection reference and initialize it
MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlConnection msqlConnection = null;
msqlConnection = new MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlConnection(server=localhost;user id=UserName;Password=UserPassword;database=DatabaseName;persist security info=False);
    //define the command reference
MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlCommand msqlCommand = new MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlCommand();
    //define the connection used by the command object
msqlCommand.Connection = this.msqlConnection;
    //define the command text
msqlCommand.CommandText = "SELECT * FROM TestTable;";
    //open the connection
    //use a DataReader to process each record
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlDataReader msqlReader = msqlCommand.ExecuteReader();
    while (msqlReader.Read())
        //do something with each record
catch (Exception er)
    //do something with the exception
    //always close the connection

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  1. #1 by Alexandru on September 10th, 2010

    I had same problem when i had to update an app from silverilght 3 to 4 or when i had to change a simple algorithm of reading from an 2003 Excel document, which is quite different than reading from an 2010 Excel document. That`s because the are not standards. Fortunately, there are patches for theese compatibility problems , let`s see how much it will work :)

  2. #2 by MaryamKh on October 12th, 2010

    I have to develop a website for a server which has .NET v2.0 installed. I’m constrained to use this framework and not install a new one.
    My website has to connect to a mysql database on this server.
    I’m developing on another machine but will have to publish the website to the server i mentioned. So I need to connect using the IP address, user id, and password.
    In VS2010 I followed the procedure you mentioned in this article but I still cannot connect to the server. If I enter all the information and then try to select the database name from the dropdown list I get an error “Unable to retrieve the list of databases”. If I enter the database name manually and click the Test Connection button I get an error “Unable to connect to any of the specified MySQL Hosts”.
    I’m able to ping the server IP addresses (it has two) from my machine so I know it can be reached.
    Also the connection information (ip, username, password) are correct because an older applicaion is able to connect using the same information.
    Please help!

    • #3 by catalin.boja on October 14th, 2010


      The problem is not generated by the framework version. The error messages given by the wizard are not very explicit (they could mean a lot of things) and they will not help you identify the problem. So, in order to debug the problem write a simple function using the sample code. Run the function in debugger and check the exception message in the catch block. Using that, you will have a more clear image on what have generated the error. I can help you if you give me that error message.

  3. #4 by Jon on October 26th, 2010


    I’m getting the same problem as MaryamKh, and was wondering if you could help.

    I used your sample code above to simulate the error and here is the exception.

    Line 23: msqlCommand.CommandText = “SELECT * FROM ball;”;
    Line 24: //open the connection
    Line 25: msqlConnection.Open();
    Line 26: //use a DataReader to process each record
    Line 27: MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlDataReader msqlReader = msqlCommand.ExecuteReader();

    Source File: C:\SchindlersList\Schindler\Schindler\About.aspx.cs Line: 25

    Stack Trace:

    [MySqlException (0x80004005): Unable to connect to any of the specified MySQL hosts.]
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.NativeDriver.Open() +807
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.Driver.Open() +70
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.Driver.Create(MySqlConnectionStringBuilder settings) +163
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlPool.CreateNewPooledConnection() +39
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlPool.GetPooledConnection() +356
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlPool.TryToGetDriver() +198
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlPool.GetConnection() +125
    MySql.Data.MySqlClient.MySqlConnection.Open() +727
    Schindler.About.Page_Load(Object sender, EventArgs e) in C:\SchindlersList\Schindler\Schindler\About.aspx.cs:25
    System.Web.Util.CalliHelper.EventArgFunctionCaller(IntPtr fp, Object o, Object t, EventArgs e) +14
    System.Web.Util.CalliEventHandlerDelegateProxy.Callback(Object sender, EventArgs e) +35
    System.Web.UI.Control.OnLoad(EventArgs e) +91
    System.Web.UI.Control.LoadRecursive() +74
    System.Web.UI.Page.ProcessRequestMain(Boolean includeStagesBeforeAsyncPoint, Boolean includeStagesAfterAsyncPoint) +2207

    That might be a bit awkward to read but if you could shed some light on the situation that would be great,


    • #5 by catalin.boja on November 2nd, 2010

      Hi Jon,

      The exception [MySqlException (0x80004005): Unable to connect to any of the specified MySQL hosts.] is very explicit and it tells that the application could not connect to the MySQL server using the specified connection string.
      Possible problems:
      - the MySQL server is not running (connect to the MySQL Server using some sort of GUI tool – I Use MySQL Workbench or MySQL command line client); also, if you use Windows OS check MySQL service status
      - the connection string is wrong (test it using telnet: In command prompt type “telnet” and in the telnet prompt type “o server_IP port”)
      - if the connection string is correct but you still can’t access the server check firewall settings for the server (it may block all incoming connections for the MySQL server) or the client
      - you are behind a proxy server (like a campus proxy) that block all ports except common one

      If any of the above solutions doesn’t work, tell me and I will think to other tests.

    • #6 by Abhishek on December 27th, 2011

      first of all i’ll say thanx to the uploader for explaining everything in a step by step manner.

      i hava tried the following code and its working properly with MySQL…….

      using System;
      using System.Collections.Generic;
      using System.ComponentModel;
      using System.Data;
      using System.Drawing;
      using System.Linq;
      using System.Text;
      using System.Windows.Forms;
      using MySql.Data.MySqlClient;

      public partial class Form1 : Form
      public Form1()

      private void Read_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
      MySqlConnection con = new MySqlConnection(“server=localhost;User Id=root;password=omsairam;database=cdac;Persist Security Info=True”);
      MySqlCommand cmd = new MySqlCommand(“select * from EMPLOYEE”,con);
      MySqlDataReader dr = cmd.ExecuteReader();
      DataTable dt = new DataTable();
      dataGridView.DataSource = dt;

      private void Modify_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
      MySqlConnection con = new MySqlConnection(“server=localhost;User Id=root;password=omsairam;database=cdac;Persist Security Info=True”);
      MySqlCommand cmd = new MySqlCommand(“update EMPLOYEE set sal=1000 where EMPNO=101″,con);
      int success = cmd.ExecuteNonQuery();

      private void Insert_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
      MySqlConnection con = new MySqlConnection(“server=localhost;User Id=root;password=omsairam;database=cdac;Persist Security Info=True”);
      MySqlCommand cmd = new MySqlCommand(“insert into EMPLOYEE values(209,’SHIKHA’,10000)”, con);
      int success = cmd.ExecuteNonQuery();

      private void Delete_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
      MySqlConnection con = new MySqlConnection(“server=localhost;User Id=root;password=omsairam;database=cdac;Persist Security Info=True”);
      MySqlCommand cmd = new MySqlCommand(“delete from employee where EMPNO=209″,con);
      int success = cmd.ExecuteNonQuery();

  4. #7 by Midori on February 10th, 2011


    Erro no sistema

    #42000You have an error in your SQL syntax; check the manual that corresponds to your MySQL server version for the right syntax to use near ‘a1.IdTipo = 1 order by IdCondominio’ at line 1

    • #8 by catalin.boja on February 10th, 2011

      Hi Midori,

      Can you show me the entire SQL command. The error you are getting is generated by some mistake in that SQ command, but I must see it in order to get an idea.

  5. #9 by Antonio on March 7th, 2011

    i have a problem when insert an detailsViews,
    i add a new connection with data source Mysql Database, i complete with user name e password and select the right database.
    now in the next configuration page i select the table of database e click next then i click test query but i have an error of syntax. “…..syntax to use near ‘[fild]‘ at line1
    i undertand that the problem is the “[“.
    how i resolve???

    thank you

    • #10 by catalin.boja on March 10th, 2011

      Hi Antonio,

      Visual Studio generates auto sql queries for SQL Server, even if you are connecting to MySQL. One problem is that it put the fields between [ and ]. In this case (as you have noticed) modify the generated SQL command and remove the [ and ].

  6. #11 by sina on August 12th, 2011

    Imagine we have a website and it has a database, In this case, if we want to connect to server, what i should do,
    for example what is server name?? is it the name of web site for example ????

    each time i tried i received “unable to connect any of the specified mysql host” why ?


    • #12 by catalin.boja on August 15th, 2011

      Hi Sina,

      For the server name use the IP of the server that hosts the database server.
      If the web server and the database server are on the same machine then get the IP address of your domain (if you use Windows, start command prompt and give the command: ping
      If the database server is not listening on the default port then the server name contains the IP address and the port number.

      When deploying (or developing) your application you can use localhost (or as the server name only if the application and the database server are on the same machine.

      I hope these advices helps.

  7. #13 by Jorge on November 7th, 2011

    Hello everyone!

    I have a little problem in the “in the Add Connection window”: Every time I try to type something in the form it closes inmediately after the first character is typed in any field.
    With the other providers I have no problems at all.

    I have installed mysql connector 6.3.7
    I’m using VB in Visual Studio 2010 SP1

    What to do?

    Thanks in advance.

  8. #14 by Antonio on November 8th, 2011

    Good Example, it works. Thanks for sharing.

  9. #15 by Ajitesh on November 10th, 2011

    Thank you !!

  10. #16 by minas on November 16th, 2011

    I have the same problem Jorge(post #12) has.. i managed to add the mySQL database in the connections, when i try to enter the details the window closes immediately ..
    HELP plz.. its urgent!!

  11. #17 by ortiz on December 29th, 2011

    Its OK. But the database must be located in MySql../data/. Is possible to add the mysql as a new item in my project? in that case the path to find the database will be changed to my namespace?

  12. #18 by jana on April 2nd, 2012

    mysql server option is not present in my options
    but i have installed it and also created table in it.
    help me ……..thanks in advance.

  13. #19 by sam on April 12th, 2012

    i still unable to connect with my database even that database i create new….
    dunno to… it’s something wrong with my vs2010 or mysql connector not install properly??

    btw i using mysql 5.2.

  14. #20 by luis on May 30th, 2012

    Thanks a lot! I can find this in other site! Great Helpfull

  15. #22 by Templar on June 2nd, 2012

    I have similar problem like Jorge and Sam. Is reinstalling VS and MySQL eliminated the problem?

  16. #23 by Shyuan on August 2nd, 2012

    I am using VS2010 Express and the latest Connector/NET 6.5.4, but still I couldn’t see the MySQL under Choose Data Source. I am very new to VS2010 C#, I started working C# recently for my dissertation. I was able to display the data from MySQL database by writing the connection codes. Like you said, there will be no problem compiling the project. But, could you please tell me if there’s anything bad if I did not do the Add Connection?

    And why do we need to connect it since we can connect it via code lines? I am quite confused. Hope to hear from you. Thank you. :)

    • #24 by Catalin on August 3rd, 2012

      Hi Shyuan,

      It is ok if your project is connecting to the database and you can display the data. This is the objective and there is no bad solution, if the solution is working. The real concern is regarding solution efficiency, in terms of executions or coding.
      The problems you have encountered (you can’t see MySQL under Choose Data Source or you can’t Add a new connection) are generated by VisualStudio. The drawback is that you will not be able to use some functions that will allow you to generate with more ease DataSources, to bind visual controls to the data sources and others. All these are functions of the VisualStudio IDE which help programmers to implement more efficiently some common tasks when working with a database.
      In the end, everything you do visually in the VisualStudio designer generates code in your project source code files (mostly in the .designer.cs files). So, if you use VS2010 tools or write your own code it is the same thing. The drawback for the second scenario is that writing code takes time and some common tasks can be automatized as they have a standard solution.
      For writing software you need a simple ASCII editor (like notepad) and a compiler for the source code. The IDEs, like Visual Studio, gives you a lot of tools that makes coding a lot easier and faster. In the case of MySQL and VS2010 some of these tools are not working properly and you are forced to write the code.

  17. #25 by Sonia Solis on November 23rd, 2012

    I am struggled because I am not able to find a solution for my problem. I got the below error
    when I tried to access the database , this is happening also from the server. the application and mysql are on the same server. This a VPS. [MySqlException (0×80004005): Unable to connect to any of the specified MySQL hosts

  18. #26 by Igor on December 1st, 2012

    Good Example, it works. Thanks for sharing.

  19. #27 by linzi on March 27th, 2013

    Good example ,thanks.

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