We are looking at using merge replication to maintain a 2-way data flow between a central SQL Server 2012 Standard database and, eventually, 100's of international satellite SQL Express 2012 installations. The central database being the publisher with the SQL Express installations being subscribers.

I understand that I can setup a parameterised filter so that data can be sent specifically to each satellite database - e.g. using the unique ID of each satellite installation.

Is there a maximum number of subscribers that one publication on the SQL Server Standard 2012 can have? From my investigation I have read some people saying 25 but others saying they have many more than that. I can find nothing definitive. Obviously if it is as low as 25 then this solution will not work.

1 Answer 1


There is no hard limit but you will limited by hardware considering the agents will consume cpu, memory, and i/o. There is also a desktop heap issue that some have run into when running a large number of push subscriptions, ymmv.

I personally have 1 topology I administer which currently has approximately 3,000 pull subscribers.

  • Thanks Brandon. That definitely answers the question about whether it could sign a few hundred subscribers. Thank you! We were thinking of Azure for the server so that we can scale up as and when required. Do you have any thoughts on that side of things?
    – user3218552
    Commented Jan 22, 2014 at 16:20

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