The ADO.NET DataSet is a memory-resident representation of data that provides a consistent relational programming model regardless of the source of the data it contains. A DataSet represents a complete set of data including the tables that contain, order, and constrain the data, as well as the relationships between the tables.
There are several ways of working with a DataSet, which can be applied independently or in combination. You can:
Populate the DataSet with tables of data from an existing relational data source using a DataAdapter.
A strongly typed DataSet can also be transported using an XML Web service. The design of the DataSet makes it ideal for transporting data using XML Web services. For an overview of XML Web services, see XML Web Services Overview. For an example of consuming a DataSet from an XML Web service, see Consuming a DataSet from an XML Web Service.