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Advantages of Log Shipping

Although log shipping requires the DBA's help to work, it does offer some advantages over other forms of failover:

  1. Easy setup. Log shipping can be configured by using the Database Maintenance Plan Wizard. With a few mouse clicks and some careful planning, you can have a dependable failover solution.

  2. Standby databases can be available for read-only queries. In some environments, standby servers are used for reporting. Note, however, that a log-shipped database will NOT be available while transaction logs are applied to it. Therefore, if you take transaction log backups every hour, and if applying the backup to the standby server takes 10 minutes, the log-shipped database will be available for queries only 50 minutes out of every hour.

  3. Low maintenance. Log shipping usually works well; if one of the steps fails SQL Server picks up exactly where it left off and very little troubleshooting is required.

  4. Multiple standby servers can be configured. You can ship the transaction logs from the primary server to multiple standby servers. This way, you further reduce the chances of downtime. In addition, each standby server can be used for a different purpose—one server can be used for reporting and another one for providing high availability.

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