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Deprecated Features in SQL Server 2005 Replication

Updated: 14 April 2006

This topic describes replication features that will be removed in a future release. The features are available in Microsoft SQL Server 2005, but we recommend that you use alternative features when possible.

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This topic is available in the Setup Help documentation and in SQL Server 2005 Books Online. Topic links that appear as bold text in the Setup Help documentation refer to topics that are only available in Books Online.

The following features, which apply to all types of replication, have been deprecated in SQL Server 2005.

Feature Description

Attachable subscriptions

This feature can be used when deploying a large number of pull subscriptions, which is common in merge replication. In SQL Server 2005, we recommend that you use the following approaches rather than attachable subscriptions:

In both cases, you can automate the creation of a large number of subscriptions with scripting: create a single subscription; script it; modify the script for each Subscriber; and apply the script at each Subscriber to create a subscription. For more information, see Scripting Replication.

For more information about attachable subscriptions, see Attachable Subscriptions.

Subscriber registration

The stored procedure sp_addsubscriber (Transact-SQL) is deprecated. It is no longer required to explicitly register a Subscriber at the Publisher.

SQL Distributed Management Objects (SQL-DMO)

Existing code will continue to work, but SQL-DMO does not support new features in SQL Server 2005. Use Replication Management Objects (RMO) instead. For more information, see Programming with Replication Management Objects.

Schema changes using sp_repladdcolumn and sp_repldropcolumn

The stored procedures sp_repladdcolumn (Transact-SQL) and sp_repldropcolumn (Transact-SQL) have been deprecated. Use schema change replication instead. For more information, see Making Schema Changes on Publication Databases.

The stored procedures cannot be used for adding or dropping columns with data types introduced in SQL Server 2005: XML, varchar(max), nvarchar(max), varbinary(max), or user defined types (UDT).

Checksum validation

Checksum validation should only be used for Subscribers running Microsoft SQL Server version 7.0. Use binary checksum validation for SQL Server Subscribers running more recent versions. You can also use row count validation for all SQL Server Subscribers, including version 7.0 and those subscribing to publications from Oracle Publishers. For more information, see Validating Replicated Data.

Adding publications to Active Directory

Adding a publication to Active Directory using the @add_to_active_directory parameter of sp_addpublication (Transact-SQL) or sp_addmergepublication (Transact-SQL), has been deprecated. Subscribing to a publication by locating it in Active Directory has been discontinued.

-UseInprocLoader parameter

This parameter of the Distribution Agent and Merge Agent is deprecated because it is not compatible with the XML data type. If you are not replicating XML data, this parameter can be used. For more information, see Replication Distribution Agent and Replication Merge Agent.

The following transactional replication features have been deprecated for SQL Server 2005.

Feature Description

Subscription expiration for transactional publications

The @retention property of sp_addpublication (Transact-SQL) has been deprecated. Subscriptions are still marked as inactive and must be reinitialized if they have not synchronized within the maximum distribution retention period (the @max_distretention property of sp_adddistributiondb (Transact-SQL). For more information about retention periods, see Subscription Expiration and Deactivation.

"No sync" subscriptions to transactional publications

A subscription is a "no sync" subscription if a value of none is specified for the @sync_type parameter of sp_addsubscription (Transact-SQL) parameter. If you want to specify that the necessary schema and data are already present in the subscription database, specify a value of replication support only for the parameter instead. For more information, see Initializing a Transactional Subscription Without a Snapshot.

ODBC Subscribers

Use OLE-DB for non-SQL Server Subscribers instead. For information about supported Subscribers, see Non-SQL Server Subscribers.

Transformable subscriptions

This feature is available through the stored procedure interface, but support for this feature in the user interface has been dropped. Using the feature requires installation of Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Data Transformation Services (DTS). For more information, see SQL Server 2005 Integration Services Backward Compatibility. For more information about transformable subscriptions, see Transforming Published Data.

Updatable subscriptions with snapshot publications

Using updatable subscriptions with transactional publications is still supported. For more information, see Updatable Subscriptions for Transactional Replication.

Distribution ActiveX control

This control allows you to embed the Distribution Agent in applications. Use RMO instead. For more information, see Synchronizing Subscriptions (RMO Programming).

Replication Distributor Interface

In SQL Server 2000, the Replication Distributor Interface provided an interface to store replicated transactions in the distribution database on the Distributor. This interface could be used to enable publishing from a non-SQL Server database (additional custom programming was required to track changes on the Publisher). Support for this feature has been deprecated, but existing code will continue to work on a server upgraded from SQL Server 2000. For more information, see "Replication Distributor Interface Reference" in SQL Server 2000 Books Online.

SQL Server 2005 supports publishing from Oracle databases without custom programming. For more information, see Oracle Publishing Overview.

The following merge replication features have been deprecated for SQL Server 2005.

Feature Description

Alternate synchronization partners

The alternate synchronization partners feature allows you to specify an alternate Publisher with which a Subscriber can synchronize. For more information, see Alternate Synchronization Partners.

In SQL Server 2005, we recommend that you use merge replication in conjunction with database mirroring, rather than alternate synchronization partners. For more information, see Replication and Database Mirroring.

Merge ActiveX control

This control allows you to embed the Merge Agent in applications. Use RMO instead. For more information, see Synchronizing Subscriptions (RMO Programming).

Multicolumn UPDATE option

When merge replication performs an update, it updates all changed columns in one UPDATE statement and resets unchanged columns to their original values. Alternatively, it can issue multiple UPDATE statements, with one UPDATE statement for each column that has changed. The multicolumn UPDATE statement is typically more efficient.

In previous versions of SQL Server, it was recommended to specify a value of false for the fast_multicol_updateproc article option to address cases in which a multicolumn update (one UPDATE statement) might be less efficient:

  • Most updates involve a small number of columns.
  • Index maintenance on unchanged columns is high because those columns are reset when updates occur.

Due to performance improvements in SQL Server, this option is no longer required for these cases.

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