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In our Active Directory domain, we have a handful of SharePoint farms, mostly SP2010, and an SP2013. Our main farm, an SP2010 Enterprise farm, has User Profile Sync Service configured and actively running. There is no publication/subscription going on to other farms.

Because of the extraordinary pain and misery I suffered to get UPSS functioning properly, I have been loathe to even attempt to fire up UPSS on any other farm, although it would do us well if this were possible. Some of my concern is just pain avoidance, some of it is a worry over accidentally setting up some awful three-way endless loop of updating between different SharePoint farms and our Active Directory.

I have not been able to find any authoritative statement on activating multiple UPSS instances in a single AD domain. Fwiw, our AD domain function level is 2008.

Can I safely run an instance of UPSS on more than one of our SharePoint 2010 or 2013 farms in our Active Directory domain?

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You can have as many as you like. That said, where the conflict would come in is if you are exporting UPA attributes to AD DS. As long as you're not doing this, feel free to configure multiple UPSS Sync Connections on multiple farms within the same forest.

  • ...and User Profile Sync in 2013 is WAY better than it was in 2010. – Matthew McDermott Aug 26 '15 at 11:43

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