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ComplexType Class

Represents a complex type in the Entity Data Model (EDM).

Namespace:  System.Data.Metadata.Edm
Assembly:  System.Data.Entity (in System.Data.Entity.dll)

public class ComplexType : StructuralType

The ComplexType in the Entity Data Model (EDM) represents a type that includes a set of properties like an entity type but does not include a key property. For more information about the complex types in the EDM, see Complex Type and How to: Define a Model with Complex Types (Entity Framework).

The following code sample gets a metadata workspace from the connection and uses that metadata workspace to retrieve information about the properties of the Complex types in the specified model. Note that the metadata workspace is a runtime service component that provides support for retrieving metadata.

The code sample uses a CSpace to specify the model. The CSpace represents the default name for the conceptual model. The code sample uses the CustomerComplexAddr model that is provided in How to: Define a Model with Complex Types (Entity Framework) topic. For an example of the application config file, see Implementing Complex Type (EDM) topic.

using System;
using System.Data;
using System.Collections.ObjectModel;
using System.Data.EntityClient;
using System.Data.Metadata.Edm;

class GetComplexTypeMembersExample
  static void Main()
      // Establish a connection to the underlying data provider by 
      // using the connection string specified in the config file.
      using (EntityConnection connection =
        new EntityConnection("Name=CustomerWComplexAddrEntities"))
         // Open the connection.

         // Access the metadata workspace.
         MetadataWorkspace workspace = 

         // Get properties of complex types.
         GetProperties(workspace, DataSpace.CSpace);
    catch (MetadataException exceptionMetadata)
       Console.WriteLine("MetadataException: {0}",
    catch (System.Data.MappingException exceptionMapping)
       Console.WriteLine("MappingException: {0}",

  public static void GetProperties(MetadataWorkspace workspace, 
      DataSpace model)
    // Get a collection of complex types.
    ReadOnlyCollection<ComplexType> complexTypes =

    // Iterate through the collection to get each complex type.
    foreach (ComplexType complexType in complexTypes)
         "\n\n***ComplexType Name: {0}, Namespace: {1}",

          "\nGet the properties of this " +
          "ComplexType object ==>");
          // Iterate through the collection to get each property of the 
          // current ComplexType object.
          foreach (EdmProperty property in complexType.Properties)
            Console.Write("   Property Name: {0} ", property.Name);

               "   Property declaring Type: {0}, edmtype: {1}," +
               " default: {2}, nullable: {3} ",
               property.DeclaringType, property.TypeUsage.EdmType,
               property.Default, property.Nullable);

Any public static (Shared in Visual Basic) members of this type are thread safe. Any instance members are not guaranteed to be thread safe.

Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP SP2, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003

The .NET Framework and .NET Compact Framework do not support all versions of every platform. For a list of the supported versions, see .NET Framework System Requirements.

.NET Framework

Supported in: 3.5 SP1