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We're using Sitecore 8.1 Update 2, with an Azure VM for the Sitecore instance and SQL Azure databases for the various Sitecore databases (and mLabs for MongoDB). Our CM is in one of the US regions, and one of our CDs is in the West Europe region, so the VM and databases are in that region as well. When we publish from CM to a US CD region, it goes relatively quickly, but when we publish from CM to a European CD, it seems to crawl along. I'm literally watching a publish of 1700 items increment one number at a time and it's very frustrating.

Are there any tuning tips for these scenarios to look at? It seems like the write-speed to SQL is slow, could that be related to the service level we've chosen needing to be more robust? Is it just going from the US region to the EU region is naturally slower? I noticed after doing code changes to our EU VMs, they took longer for Sitecore to recycle than their US counterparts, but theoretically the configurations are identical.

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I have had severe issues with connecting Sitecore to write to databases (or even do first reads not from cache) when the SQL Azure was not in the same region. We have an East US primary region and West US failover region for one of our clients, and we had to stop installing packages of items in the West CM because it was just terrible connecting to the SQL Azure if it was still on its Eastern primary. I can only imagine going across to EU is even worse.

I'm assuming in your topology you have a Web database in a West Europe Azure SQL which leads to your CM needing to execute compares and writes from its US region over that distance. The easiest way to solve the problem is to execute your publishes from the same region as the Web. This could be done a few ways:

  1. Setup a Sitecore instance on a West Europe VM so you can trigger manual publishes to your Europe CD or run a publishing agent to execute the publishes for you from that region.
  2. Leverage an existing non-CD instance in your West Europe region for one of the above.
  3. Upgrade to 8.2 so you can take advantage of the Publishing Service

The Publishing Service is likely what you really need since all you want to do is geographically distribute your publishing without needing a full Sitecore instance, but unfortunately it doesn't work for 8.1

  • Good suggestions, I'll definitely read about the publishing service. We're still in 8.1 for now but I think our next projects will be going to 8.2. Thanks! – Ken McAndrew Jan 19 '17 at 20:26

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