There is often confusion as to when to use Sync Frameworks or Replication. Sync Frameworks can be used to synchronize data stores whether they are databases or even a file store whereas replication is about synchronizing SQL databases.
These two synchronization mechanisms also target different audiences. Sync Frameworks targets the developers and provides more flexibility. It also imposes more coding as in the case of the non-database store, the developer must code the providers. Replication targets the DBAs and furnishes out of box procedures and monitors.
The following table also provides insight into how each mechanism addresses key features:
Synchronize by using an n-tier or service-oriented architecture
Supports heterogeneous databases
Incremental change tracking
Conflict detection and resolution
Easily create data views on the client
Automatically initialize schema and data
Supports large data sets
Query processor is locally available
Automatically propagate schema changes
Automatically repartition data
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