Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The timeout period elapsed prior to obtaining a connection from the pool

If you are working with .NET applications, at some time you might get the below (or similar) error message:

Exception message: Timeout expired.  The timeout period elapsed prior to obtaining a connection from the pool.  This may have occurred because all pooled connections were in use and max pool size was reached.

The most probable reason you are getting the above error message, is that your application
opens connection to the database without closing them. This situation is then repeated and after a number of times, the application throws an exception because it cannot open more than a given number (max pool) of connections to the database.

The best practice is to let .NET do the connection handling for you by running your SQL queries with the "using" statement. Here's a C# example:

using (SqlConnection conn = new SqlConnection(connString))
   {
      SqlCommand cmd = new SqlCommand("SELECT @@VERSION", conn);
      conn.Open();      
      SqlDataReader dr = cmd.ExecuteReader();
      //process the result
      dr.Close();
   }
}

There is a good MSDN blog article about this (a little old but the principle is the same) which has more info.
The SQL Server and .NET Hub

Reference: The SQL Server and .NET Hub (http://www.sqlnethub.com)

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Artemakis Artemiou is a Senior SQL Server Architect, Software Developer and Microsoft Data Platform MVP. He is also an author, regular blogger, president of Cyprus.NET User Group and CY Country leader of INETA-EU. He is also the creator of DBA Security Advisor and In-Memory OLTP Simulator. Artemakis is a frequent guest author of worldwide well-respected online journals where he writes articles focusing on many SQL Server topics.

Reference: The SQL Server and .NET Hub (http://www.sqlnethub.com)

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