I have a customer that needs to query a linked server to produce a report. They will be joining a linked server table with a local table.

Is it better to just let them do the select across the linked server OR migrate (backup/restore) the database every day and have there query run against 2 local databases?

For discussion sake let's say the query returns 20K records.

  • If performance is important, and you do not want the administration of the linked server, then, running the report locally sounds like a better option. I would compare the Report's response times of both methods and base a decision off of that.
    – rvsc48
    Mar 29, 2017 at 20:06
  • Are you limited to only these options? Mar 29, 2017 at 20:07
  • 1
    You can publish the database instead of backup/restore.
    – McNets
    Mar 29, 2017 at 20:12
  • @sp_BlitzErik No. Those are the only options I am familiar with Mar 30, 2017 at 16:06
  • @McNets Publish? I have only read access to the linked server database Mar 30, 2017 at 16:07

1 Answer 1


You'll likely get the best performance by copying the content of the remote table locally first, then running the query. Especially if you filter the remote table through a remote view or a stored proc on the remote server.

Joining across a linked server can be brutal on performance depending on the implementation details of the query.

  • @sp_BlitzErik spelling edits FTW
    – Wes
    Mar 29, 2017 at 20:46
  • 2
    @Wes I had Richie write a bot that checks Max's posts for typos. Mar 29, 2017 at 20:51
  • 1
    Thanks, Erik! Stupid me attempting to answer on mobile, again.
    – Hannah Vernon
    Mar 29, 2017 at 22:12
  • 1
    @MaxVernon Even after 10 years, typing on phones is horrible. Mar 29, 2017 at 22:18

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