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This article addresses the interoperability of different SQL Serverversions with respect to SQL Server replication. It also explains thecompatibility issues with the different service packs for SQL Serverversions 6.0 and 6.5. In general, the publication and the distributionservers must be on the same version and same service pack revision. TheReadme.txt file that accompanies the service packs will also direct you toapply the service packs on both publication and distribution servers.
SQL Server version 6.0 introduced replication as a built-in feature of theproduct. Since then, it has been enhanced in SQL Server 6.0 service packsand in the next release of the product, SQL Server 6.5. Due to the variousenhancements, replication-related stored procedures, extended storedprocedures, and tables have been modified. Because the replication tasksrun on the distribution server and depend on the stored procedures andextended stored procedures on the publication server, the publication anddistribution servers must be running the same version and service packrevision of SQL Server. Because replication does not use any storedprocedures or extended stored procedures on the subscribing server, thesubscribing server can run the same or any earlier version or service packrevision of SQL Server.
SQL Server 6.0 Distribution Server
The publication server must be running at least SQL Server version 6.0,and must be running the same service pack revision as the distributionserver. For example, if the distribution server is running SQL Serverversion 6.0 Service Pack 3, the publication server must also be runningSQL Server 6.0 Service Pack 3. However, The subscribing server can run SQLServer 6.0 Service Pack 3 or earlier. Replication to SQL Server version4.2x, 6.5, or any ODBC data source is not supported with a distributionserver running SQL Server 6.0.
SQL Server 6.5 Distribution Server
The publication server must be running at least SQL Server version 6.5with the same service pack as the distribution server. The subscribingserver can be running any version earlier. For example, if thedistribution server is running SQL Server version 6.5 Service Pack 2, thepublication server must also be running SQL Server 6.5 Service Pack 2;the subscribing server can be running any earlier version of SQL Server,including SQL Server 6.0. Replication to SQL Server version 4.2x is notsupported. You can also replicate to ODBC subscribers, as explained in theproduct documentation. For more information about how to do this, pleaserefer to the "Replication to ODBC Subscribers" section of the "What's newfor Administrators" chapter in the "What's New in SQL Server 6.5."You cannot use a SQL Server 6.5 distribution server for a SQL Server 6.0publication server.