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.