This is a collection of resources I have encountered while researching the problem of intermittent connections in Windows Azure. I will be writing about how these affect not just Entity Framework, but Windows Azure more generally.
"Transient connections" is a polite way of saying "dropped connections". These are of course a fact of life when developing distributed appilications: a wide variety of network errors can occur. However there are additional causes of dropped connections in Windows Azure, and these additional cases are not all bad things.
Here are the main causes of dropped connections:
Here are some resources that I have found useful.
SQL Azure Connection Management: provides a great overview, as well as detailed listings and explanations of the individual exceptions you may encounter.
SQL Azure and Entity Framework Connection Fault Handling: very detailed explanation with code samples of how to handle the exceptions encountered when using the ObjectContext class in Entity Framework. Uses a retry framework described in the next resource.
Best Practices for Handling Transient Conditions in SQL Azure Client Applications: describes a framework that can be used to implement retry logic in SQL Azure; the preceding resource uses this framework.
Transient Fault Handling Framework: the code used by the retry framework in the preceding resource
Minimizing Connection Pool errors in SQL Azure: illustrates how to handle dropped connections
I've particularly found the postings from members of the Windows Azure Customer Advisory Team ("CAT") valuable, since they are based on creating solutions to actual customer problems. Other source of information include Bing, the Windows Azure Platform forums, etc.