This really depends on your needs. You have three instances, (usually), to consider. Questions to look at are: Do you have more than one productive client? Are you splitting your productive instance into separate clients for different countries/company sectors? Is the customizing for each productive client the same? If not, then you need a development client for each productive client. Do you need some sandboxes, training clients? You should set up some reference clients, with data and customizing change rights restricted. You can then use these to refresh your other clients.
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