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Scenario

We have two servers, each one with its own Microsoft SQL Server

  1. Serv_Home
  2. Serv_Web

In both servers, a local program works with its own local database and inserts/updates the tables. The data is shared between the 2 servers, and for this purpose we have several replicas. Serv_Home is the master server (the distributor of the publications).

A specific table must be copied from Serv_Home to Serv_Web (not viceversa), so the publication is a Snapshot.

For all the rest, a Merge publication is used. We decided to create 5 Merge publications, one for each group of tables which are more or less related. The reason why we have 5 instead of a big single one is simply convenience. Everything works fine.

Lately though, we are experiencing a high CPU usage in Serv_Home (like 50% sometimes) due to the sqlservr.exe process.


Question

Is it better to have a big single Merge publication instead of N small ones? Could this be a performance bottleneck?

I know that the best way is to try it myself, but we are in a production environment and it would be messy to redo it all. Some documentation or good reasoning would be appreciated.

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I've been looking for an answer to no avail.

However, I've found a place where some advantages are mentioned:

  1. Easier to maintain.
  2. Multiple data streams going to the subscription database at once (hopefully).
  3. If the merge fails for a publication, only this publication has to be fixed and reinitialized.

So I think there would be no performance improvement having just 1 big one publication. On the contrary, if the data streams are parallel, we can even get a better performance when splitting the merge in N small publications.

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