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I am trying to subscribe a 2016 (sp2, cu1) server to another 2017 server. I am getting the following error message:

For merge publications, the version of the Subscriber must not exceed the version of the Publisher

The database on the subscriber is running in compatibility mode 2016 (130) and the publisher is running in 2017 (140). The version of SSMS on the subscriber is also lower than the version on the publisher.

Any advice?

Additional details

While I am aware that on surface level this should be working it still is not, could the error I am getting be hiding a different problem?

  • Publisher Compatibility level: 140
  • Subscriber Compatibility level: 130

I am unable to set the compatibility level of the subscriber to 140 because the server is running 2016 and not 2017. I am also unable to upgrade the publisher right now because of business reasons (I am unable to take the server offline for any period of time). I addition to this, we have other 2016 (sp2, cu1) servers running as subscriber to this server. The publisher server is also the distributor, so both are running on SQL Server 2017 which is a high version of SQL Server than the subscriber.

The subscriber instance was upgraded right after the installation of SQL Server to the above SP and CU, the publisher was upgraded from 2016 to 2017 early last year.

  • Publisher: Microsoft SQL Server 2017 (RTM-CU6) (KB4101464) - 14.0.3025.34 (X64) Apr 9 2018 18:00:41 Copyright (C) 2017 Microsoft Corporation Enterprise Edition: Core-based Licensing (64-bit) on Windows Server 2016 Standard 10.0 <X64> (Build 14393: ) (Hypervisor) Subscriber: Microsoft SQL Server 2016 (SP2-CU1) (KB4135048) - 13.0.5149.0 (X64) May 19 2018 09:41:57 Copyright (c) Microsoft Corporation Enterprise Edition: Core-based Licensing (64-bit) on Windows Server 2016 Standard 10.0 <X64> (Build 14393: ) (Hypervisor) – Nicholas Saul Jan 18 at 14:50
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It looks like the error I was getting was fake. I scripted out a subscriber from another server and modified the necessary parts and ran the script and it worked fine. Thanks all for the help!

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