We are seeing if it is feasible to setup Azure SQL DB Managed Instance (SQL MI) and an Azure VM with SSMS installed for this replication scenario:

We have a vendor who needs access to our SQL Server database and can RDP into it for administration. We will be using ExpressRoute to link SQL MI to our on-prem. It seems the only way to connect to SQL MI is either using site-to-site VPN (vNet) or ExpressRoute. Our vendor needs to setup transactional replication to push data to our SQL MI which will be a subscriber. This link Replication with sql managed instance is the only guide I see but has no details.

  1. Does the vendor need a vNet/ExpressRoute connection to setup replication to our database? Or can they setup replication using our VM with SSMS client tools that is in our SQL MI vNet?

  2. If that is not possible, then I guess we need to setup the Azure VM with SQL Server and they connect to that instance to replicate. Then we need to replicate that db to the Azure SQL DB MI. This seems complicated and wonder what other options are there.

  • Does the vendor already has RDP access on to your company's network? If so, I would think it's only a matter of him using the correct connection string to the Managed Instance from the network. It would look something like xxxxxxx.database.windows.net where xxxxxx is the server where the MI resides. This URL can be found in the Azure Portal. – SQL Sean Dec 7 '18 at 16:58
  • @SQLSean, No they don't. We are migrating to Azure so nothing is set up yet. We will have ExpressRoute set up on-prem to the SQL DB Managed Instance. But the vendor needs to have full access to the db to set up transactional replication,etc. I think they need the vpn gateway client to connect since it is in private subnet and not accessible from public. link Also to clarify, the vendor will host the publisher db on their end and push it to ours in the cloud. – cyberdog Dec 7 '18 at 20:22

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