I will soon have a VM clone of one of my production servers that I will be using for development before deployment to production. The problem is that these 2 servers will be in different datacenters with slow links between them, and I'm going to occasionally need to refresh the data on the dev server with new prod data.
My thoughts are that I could probably do this easier if I could only import changes made to the prod db since the last synchronization, but this could be weeks or months between these events. Would merge replication be the best way to do this? The prod db is a fairly busy database. Would weeks of changes be intesive to synchronize? Affect the performance on the db? Is there a better way to do this?