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We have used SQL Server Replication for a long time and had some issues with it that sometimes we needed to reinitialize subscriptions to fix some issues & other times we needed to destroy the whole replication structure & rebuild it again!

Our main concern is that once we have a replication issue, almost all the time the easy solution will be to reinitialize the replication which is not accepted for our business requirements.

Now we are preparing to release a new big project & we are trying to look for 3rd party software for doing SQL Server replication.

Our setup includes Servers distributed in branches ( Different countries ) + mobile clients ( laptops with local SQL Server databases ) and we need to replicate data between all of these with the ability to offer article filtering.

Would somebody please suggest some alternate solutions for us?

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2 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

It's highly unlikely you'll find a better merge replication solution than what's built-in.

Merge replication in particular is hard to implement.

I would suggest that if you're having issues with the current setup breaking, take it up with Microsoft. They should be very motivated to help you find the root cause of the problem so their customers are happy, and not looking for other solutions like you're asking for here.

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I agree with Jon, you will not find a better alternative than Merge Replication for what you are trying to do. –  Brandon Williams Jun 15 '13 at 15:10
    
What we should focus on is the specific errors/problems you are running into and address those. –  Brandon Williams Jun 15 '13 at 15:10
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Thanks for your feedback, I have already contacted Microsoft regarding multiple issues we faced which eventually seemed to be a bug in their product, but the problem is that each time I face an issue, it is taking too much time to investigate & solve it in accepted time frame for our business, so for that we were looking for another solution. –  Adel Khayata Jun 17 '13 at 6:33
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I will try to post today new questions about some of the issues I am facing with the current setup so we can try to investigate it more further. –  Adel Khayata Jun 17 '13 at 6:37
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This is the sort of thing that Microsoft Consulting Services can help you with. They know replication really well, and setting up large merge replication farms needs to be done just right or the whole thing will come crashing down.

If there are specific errors that need troubleshooting you can post those here so that they can be figured out, but if it's that sensitive and subscribers need to be initialized that often the entire platform might need some looking into.

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Thanks for your feedback, I have already commented in the other answer. –  Adel Khayata Jun 17 '13 at 6:38
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