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No, just drop it to the deploy directory.
I suppose you use AS4/AS5/AS6
Is it possible to deploy -ds.xml in AS5 without server restart?
If you don't deactivate the deployment scanner (enabled by default with an 5sec intervall) just drop the *-ds.xml into the deploy folder.
If you replace one, all connections are closed and the pool will be restarted. This might cause Exceptions if applications are running.