Entity Framework 6: Preview Alpha 2 released recently... few key features:
- Async language support is now available for queries and updates when running on .NET 4.5.
- Custom conventions now provide the ability to override the default conventions that Code First uses for mapping types, properties, etc. to your database.
- Multi-tenant migrations allow the same database to be used by multiple contexts with full Code First Migrations support for independently evolving the model backing each context.
- Using Enumerable.Contains in a LINQ query is now handled much more efficiently by EF and the SQL Server provider resulting greatly improved performance.
- All features of EF6 (except async) are available on both .NET 4 and .NET 4.5. This includes support for enums and spatial types and the performance improvements that were previously only available when using .NET 4.5.
- Start-up time for many large models has been dramatically improved thanks to improved view generation performance.
Entity Framework 5 release is available on NuGet and has following key features:
- Enum support allows you to have enum properties in your entity classes. This new feature is available for Model, Database and Code First.
- Table-valued functions in your database can now be used with Database First.
- Spatial data types can now be exposed in your model using the DbGeography and DbGeometry types. Spatial data is supported in Model, Database and Code First.
- Multiple-diagrams per model allows you to have several diagrams that visualize subsections of your overall model.
- Batch import of stored procedures allows multiple stored procedures to be added to the model during model creation.