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The SQL Sharding Deployment Tool


An overview of the SQL Sharding Deployment Tool operations and parameters.

The SQL Sharding Deployment Tool is an executable that deploys and manages the xDB Collection database and can be used on its own if you want greater control over parameters such as the number of shards to deploy. The tool must be run from a local machine. It cannot be uploaded and run from an Azure environment.


The Sitecore Installation Framework (SIF) and the Sitecore Azure Toolkit (SAT) create two shards by default. This is the recommended number of shards that handles the majority of cases; for better performance, we usually recommend increasing the Azure tier, while increasing the number of shards is a good solution only if the database is huge. To change the number of shards you can either re-deploy the xDB Collection database. For SIF, you can also change the JSON files used during the installation process.

The tool is bundled with the xConnect Collection service and is available in the following web deploy packages (WDP):

Topology name

Example WDP Name

Tool location

XP Single (Developer) - On Premise

Sitecore 9.X.X rev. 001250 (OnPrem)


XP Single (Developer) - Cloud

Sitecore 9.X.X rev. 001250 (Cloud)

XP Scaled - On Premise

Sitecore 9.X.X rev. 001564 (OnPrem)

XP Scaled - Cloud

Sitecore 9.X.X rev. 001564 (Cloud)


You can use the SQL Sharding Deployment Tool to:

  • Create the xDB Collection shard cluster (create). For example:

    .\Sitecore.Xdb.Collection.Database.SqlShardingDeploymentTool.exe /operation create /connectionstring 'user id=sa;password=12345;data source=.' /dbedition Standard /shardMapManagerDatabaseName TestDatabase /shardMapNames ContactIdShardMap,DeviceProfileIdShardMap,ContactIdentifiersIndexShardMap /shardnumber 2 /shardnameprefix Shard_ /shardnamesuffix _Sample /dacpac Sitecore.Xdb.Collection.Database.Sql.dacpac
  • Drop the xDB Collections hard cluster (drop). For example:

    .\Sitecore.Xdb.Collection.Database.SqlShardingDeploymentTool.exe /operation drop /connectionstring "user id=sa;password=12345;data source=." /dbedition Standard /shardMapManagerDatabaseName "TestDatabase" /shardMapNames "ContactIdShardMap,DeviceProfileIdShardMap,ContactIdentifiersIndexShardMap"


The following table describes the parameters used by the SQL Sharding Deployment Tool. Different operations accept a specific set of parameters in a specific order.

Parameter name



Values / Examples



Specifies whether to create or drop the database.

  • create

  • drop



SQL Server credentials used to create the database.

"user id=sa;password=SamplePassword;data source=.\SQL2016"



Azure SQL DTU-based service tiers. This value is only used if you are deploying to Azure SQL.

  • Basic

  • Standard

  • Premium



The name of the shard map manager database.

Example: Sample_ShardMapManagerDb



Comma-separated list of shard maps that contain shard meta data and mappings. Do not modify this value.

Value when using the create operation:ContactIdShardMap,DeviceProfileIdShardMap,ContactIdentifiersIndexShardMap.

Value when using the drop operation: ContactIdShardMap,DeviceProfileIdShardMap



The number of shards to create. Count starts at 0.




Format is {Prefix}{Number}{Suffix}.

Example: Sample.Shard



Format is {Prefix}{Number}{Suffix}. Suffix can be left blank.

Example: _ABC



Path to DACPAC file. By default, DACPAC files are in the same folder as the tool.

  • Sitecore.Xdb.Collection.Database.Sql.dacpac (on-premise)

  • Sitecore.Xdb.Collection.Database.Sql.Azure.dacpac (Azure)



Path to log file. If no log file is specified, output is written to console.