Transactional Replication to Azure SQL DB is now in public preview.


As announced yesterday during my presentation at Pass Summit 2015, you can now configure Azure SQL DB as a subscriber of SQL Server Transactional Replication. This new capacity of Transactional Replication is available starting with the following versions\updates of SQL Server:

  • Community Technology Preview (CTP) 3.0 of SQL Server 2016
  • SQL Server 2014 Service Pack 1 Cumulative Update 3
  • SQL Server 2014 RTM Cumulative Update 10
  • SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 2 Cumulative Update 8

This enables two main scenarios:

  1. Migrate your data to Azure SQL DB with no downtime
  2. Bridge SQL Server on premise/on VMs to Azure SQL DB

The way we enable Azure SQL DB as a subscriber is by extending  existing logic of Transactional Replication. From the perspective of your experience with it, the only difference that you’ll notice is when you create a subscriber: you give the URL to your Azure SQL DB instead of giving the name of a server or an instance. Because we designed the feature so that you have a seamless experience and you already know about Transactional Replication, the learning curve to use this capacity is 0. It will be very easy and quick for you to start replicating your data to Azure SQL DB.

How does it work? There is ‘no replication’ service per say in Azure SQL DB. The actual replication of data is performed through the Distribution agents.

The chart below is a high level indication on the architecture.


SeedCloudTR diagram


You will find more details at the following links:

- Documentation on how to set it up

- Video presentation

- Migrating a SQL Server database to Azure SQL Database

As you use this preview, please submit your feedback on Connect with Microsoft. When you submit feedback please add the following key word (SeedingTheCloud: ) in the subject field.

If you want to discuss in person, please stop by at the SQL Server Clinic during Pass Summit 2015.

Thanks and enjoy.


Jean-Yves Devant (JY)

Senior Program Manager Tiger Team SQL Server product group

Follow the Tiger Team on Twitter : @mssqltiger