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How can SAP partners and ISVs find the most suitable test system for their need?

Having been responsible for hosted test environments at the SAP Integration and Certification Center (SAP ICC) for many years, Martin Vierling has great insight into what type of test system fits for what circumstances. With some recent new offerings by the SAP Partner organization, we recommend that both experienced partners as well as ISVs who are new to the SAP ecosystem to read his expert blog.

The best starting point when evaluating what type of test system option to purchase, is to examine the type of integration you are building – because your technical requirements will have the greatest influence on the range of choices that you have. Second on the list for most companies are the resource requirements to run or use the system – both the budget as well as necessary technical know.

Generally speaking accessing shared hosted systems is the most cost effective way to test integrations, since you do not require hardware or people to administrate the system – the access fee is all you incur. Shared systems generally allow for testing any type of standard SAP integration to open and released SAP APIs.

If you wish to do some extensive system customizations – that would not be possible in a shared environment – you have the option to subscribe to your private hosted SAP solution. The cost is a bit higher, but still you are not required to invest in hardware or have the know-how to install and maintain the system inhouse.

And last but not least, you have the option to purchase SAP NetWeaver / Application Developer licenses for inhouse usage.


Read on for some use cases, and pricing examples:

Integration via standard SAP APIs to SAP ERP, SAP NetWeaver, etc.:

If your company is building a connector or adaptor with SAP solutions, that is based on open APIs chances are high that you can test via one of our hosted solutions. The SAP Remote Access and Connectivity (SAP RAC) Service enables testing of communication with SAP solutions – either directly or via SAP Process Integration (aka Exchange Infrastructure), Internet protocols like http, or SAP’s own protocol RFC. We also provide you the Java and .Net Connector and it goes without saying that you can test enterprise services integrations. Pricing for this service varies depending on the length of your service commitment – it can be as low as 413 Euro for access to shared system for 24 months and goes up to an individual fee for a private system of your choice.

(For the expert reader – Some common integration certification scenarios that can be tested this way are XI Content, ES Bundles, middleware scenarios such as ALE integrations, most of the application scenarios such as B2B-OCI, WM-LSR, PLM, SCM or FI integrations, system monitoring scenarios as in BC-XBP, BC-XAL, telephony integrations, BW-STA, ODB, OBI and many more.)

System integrators might also be interested in complementing their test system landscape with additional shared hosted systems by SAP ICC.


Deploying Java Applications or Portlets on SAP NetWeaver

For both these development activities you will need an SAP NetWeaver development system inhouse, because of the tight integration between SAP’s Java development environment and SAP NetWeaver. The separated development components on front-end and backend can’t be connected through Internet.

If you are an individual consultant or student, we recommend that you get started with the SDN subscription, as the most cost efficient way to get the software long-term. If you just want to see a 90-day trial license, you can of course get that for free here on SDN. See details in next sections.

As a partner company, who is doing long-term development work on SAP NetWeaver you should purchase an inhouse developer license. As a company, who is doing long-term development work on SAP NetWeaver you may consider purchasing an inhouse license to even deeper your SAP knowledge.

If you are writing XI Adapters – the same SAP NetWeaver developer license will also allow you to order the Partner Connectivity Kit at no additional fee.

Writing ABAP Add-ons

Some ISVs just want to develop a user exit, others build full blown add-ons in ABAP. Regardless, if you want develop this piece of code in your own ABAP development namespace and resell it as packaged code, your first purchase should be an SAP development license for SAP NetWeaver or the particular SAP Application. You would go about ordering this the same way as an inhouse SAP system.

If you find that you’d rather have SAP ICC host your development environment, you can still opt for that more convenient solution.


These are the most typical use cases I have encountered while working with software companies. If you do not find your particular scenario described here, please add it in your comments, so that hopefully we can together come up with the complete picture.




How to find the right SAP Test System Opportunity?

There are various opportunities for independent software vendors (ISV) for developing and testing of their product integration. Please check on what you want to do, your requirements and we will show you the opportunities, the suitable interfaces, the requirements, and how to obtain the related SAP software.

Example for usage

Type of integration

We prefer in-house system

We prefer hosted environment

I am software vendor and will test my SAP interface integration with SAP Application (ERP, CRM, SRM, SCM, etc.)

Business Applications Integration



I am software vendor and will test my SAP interface integration with SAP NetWeaver (Batch Scheduling, Form processing, Telephony, etc.)

SAP NetWeaver Platform Integration



I want to write code in ABAP e.g. build an ABAP Add-on, creating own reports, transactions

ABAP Development



I want to deploy a Java application on NetWeaver AS Java

Java Development


I want to create mobile offline applications using the Mobile Infrastructure

NetWeaver Mobile


I am going to develop, run or administrate portal applications for SAP NetWeaver Portal

NetWeaver Portal


Creating seamless business process with SAP’s enterprise service-oriented architecture

Enterprise Services Bundles



I want to build XI Content (data structures, interfaces, mapping programs, integration processes)

Process Integration/Exchange Infrastructure



I want to build XI-Adapters to enable SAP PI to different application components or industry standards

Process Integration/Exchange Infrastructure


I want to write an SAP Interface integration using Java connector, .Net connector, etc

SAP Connectors



I am a Developer looking to learn and experiment with the SAP NetWeaver development environment

SAP NetWeaver ABAP or ABAP+J2EE Trial



* no commercial use  /  ** appropriate license required


  1. SAP RAC Service
  2. SAP RAC Service Exclusive
  3. SAP NetWeaver Developer User License
  4. SAP Application Developer User License
  5. IDES Test & Demo License
  6. SAP NetWeaver ABAP or ABAP+J2EE Trial Version
  7. ES Workplace + SAP NetWeaver Composition Environment
  8. Discovery Server
  9. SAP NetWeaver, Development Subscription
  10. SAP NetWeaver Portal + Portal Development Kit
  11. SAP Mobile Development Kit
  12. SAP Partner Connectivity Kit




Test opportunities with additional SAP services/capabilities and Connectivity Service
SAP Remote Access and Connectivity (RAC) Service offered by the ICC allows remote access to pre-configured SAP systems for most integration testing purposes. These systems are maintained by ICC specialists so that ISVs can completely focus on the implementation of the interface rather than additionally maintaining an SAP test system. The extensive database of IDES (Internet Demo and Evaluation System) allows software vendors to test all SAP integration scenarios for which remote testing is technically possible. Vendors can access all necessary transactions and create their own test data in these systems. SAP RAC service includes all the libraries necessary to interface with SAP Systems and the SAP Online Documentation. SAP connectors also included to access SAP from Java and .Net environment.


Requirements: Remote connection to SAP’s Network to access the ICC Test-System hosted at SAP’s data center.

How to obtain: Please apply online at Partner Application. In tab-strip Interface Certification please select Remote Test System Access. There is the option to order RAC for exclusive usage, if tests cannot be performed on a shared test system. For questions please contact SAP RAC Support.


SAP RAC Service Exclusive

The RAC-Exclusive service offers a non-share, well-managed SAP environment with quality support for remote testing and development. It is a ideal service for vendors who like to achieve high productivity for development for SAP interface integration and do away with the high cost of in-house system maintenance.


SAP RAC Service Premium

In addition to SAP RAC Service Exclusive the Premium flavor comes with additional support features and access to a tailor-made system environment. With free OSS-WRITE access, subscribers can directly submit support messages and check all existing OSS notes.

Requirements: Remote connection to SAP’s Network to access the ICC Test-System hosted at SAP’s data center.


SAP NetWeaver Developer User License
A NetWeaver Developer user is a user who uses the development tools provided with SAP NetWeaver for the purpose of modifying third party applications OR for the purpose of creating and modifying custom developed applications.

Develop on SAP’s platform your own applications
ABAP-Addons, User-exits to adopt SAP system to particular needs
Java Applications on SAP platform
Tight software integrations that reside on same server as SAP system, e.g. BC-XOM, BC-SNC
SAP interface scenarios that do not allow shared access, e.g.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: ABAP, BC-BAS, J2EE-DEP, J2EE-STD, JAVA-EE-STD, JAVA-EE-ADV

Requirements: PC with adequate power and server operating system together with trained administrator to install and run SAP system.

How to obtain: To order your SAP NetWeaver development license please see page SAP Software for Partners (prerequisites apply).


SAP Application Developer User License
An Application Developer user is a user who uses the development tools provided with SAP NetWeaver for the purpose of modifying SAP applications/software. The user does include the rights to develop on SAP NetWeaver, SAP ERP, product options applying to SAP ERP and Industry Packages.

In addition to the SAP NetWeaver Developer User License the SAP Application Developer User License provides the opportunity not only to develop on SAP’s plattform

Interfaces, suitable for testing: All interfaces

Requirements: PC with adequate power and server operating system together with trained administrator to install and run SAP system.

How to obtain: To order your SAP NetWeaver development license please see page SAP Software for Partners (prerequisites apply).


IDES Test & Demo License
It has never been easier to discover and demonstrate the world of mySAP Business Suite e-business solutions than with the Internet Demonstration and Evaluation System (IDES) with its preconfigured installation of mySAP Business Suite components, populated with the data and business processes of a fictional enterprise. This model corporation consists of several companies located around the globe with clearly defined and independent business tasks.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: AC-CCI, BC-CTS, CA-DMI, CA-EDI, FI-EDI, HR-OCI, IS-ADP, IS-ITA, IS-T-EBC, IS-TAS, IS-TPS, IS-U-WM

Requirements: PC with adequate power and server operating system together with trained administrator to install and run SAP system.

How to obtain: You can order the Test & Demo License from SAP Support Center for Software Solution Partners (prerequisites apply).


Test opportunities with free software downloads

SAP NetWeaver ABAP or ABAP+J2EE Trial Version
Also known with former versions as Mini SAP System.

SAP NetWeaver Trial Versions are without support from SAP. There is no entitlement for productive use or development beyond testing with these versions.

SAP NetWeaver that is the technical foundation of mySAP Business Suite solutions, SAP xApps composite applications, partner solutions, and customer custom-built applications. SAP NetWeaver embraces Internet standards such as HTTP, XML, and Web services. This version SAP Web Application Server supports the SAP programming languages and programming models like ABAP Objects or BSP (Business Server Pages ). If you want to test any development capabilities or administration functions or application independent functions like Smart Forms or Webflow this test-version of Web Application Server allows you to do this with minimal hardware requirements.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: BC-AL, BC-BRI, BC-CON, BC-CTI, BC-HCS, BC-SDB, BC-SNC, BC-SSF, BC-LDAP-USR, BC-XDC, BC-XOM

Requirements: Desktop PC

How to obtain: Free download at SAP NetWeaver Trial Verion

Relevant links: Technology TestDrive on Linux:
Wiki – SAP Trial Versions:
Licensing Procedure for the Mini SAP System:
Tips & tricks:
SAP Online Documentation:

SAP Trial Versions on CD
Available SAP evaluation systems on CD can be found at at public SAP Knowledge Shop
-> General -> SAP NetWeaver -> SAP NetWeaver
-> General -> SAP NetWeaver -> SAP Web Application Server

Relevant links: see SAP NetWeaver Trial Version


SAP NetWeaver, Development Subscription

The SAP NetWeaver Development Pack is no longer available.
Please contact your local sales organization to obtain a NetWeaver Development license. As Software Solution Provider or SAP Partner please see section “SAP NetWeaver Developer User License” and contact SAP Support Center for Software Solution Partners.

ES Workplace + SAP NetWeaver Composition Environment

The ES Workplace is the central place to view consolidated information about all available Enterprise Services delivered by SAP. It provides various entry points for different roles, from Architects to Process Experts. The ES Workplace is the starting point for SOA adoption, from discovery of services to evaluation of services and development of exemplary proof-of-concept composite applications on a freely accessible hosted SAP Business Suite system landscape for business and technology justification.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: ESOA-BUNDLE 1.0, SOA Roadmap Assessment

How to obtain: -> Downloads -> SAP NetWeaver Composition Environment


SAP Discovery System for Enterprise SOA

Discovery System provides you with a preinstalled system which allows you to accelerate your team’s learning and experience for SOA adoption. The complete composite application code is provided. You will gain skills and experience which will enable you to cut your time to value of enterprise SOA. This package comes with a feature that allows you to easily go back to you initial factory delivery setting once you require to do so while testing or training.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: ESOA-BUNDLE 1.0, SOA Roadmap Assessment

Requirements: Hardware is part of the package

How to obtain:


SAP NetWeaver Portal + Portal Development Kit
SAP NetWeaver Portal is a flexible, reliable, and secure solution that lets you take advantage of all your information assets. Based on open standards, it integrates any enterprise information source. SAP NetWeaver Portal provides a role-based, secure and Web-based interface to all information, applications and services. To run the portal, you need a standard browser on the desktop; no additional software components are required. As part of SAP Enterprise Portal, the portal infrastructure provides secure access to structured data coming from any kind of business application, such as data warehouses, databases, and SAP or non-SAP applications.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: EP-BP, KM-REP

How to obtain: see SAP NetWeaver Trial Verion + -> Downloads -> for Portal


SAP Mobile Development Kit
SAP Mobile Business solutions enable enterprises to mobilize their existing investment through a universal platform and ready-made scenarios to all popular devices in both connected and disconnected environments. SAP Mobile Infrastructure empowers people with anytime access to critical business processes anywhere, on any device, increasing employee productivity and efficiency. The Java API allows for peripheral-independent development. SAP Mobile Development Kit (MDK) describes the development process in much detail, many examples, and Emulator Tool for testing.

Interfaces, suitable for testing: currently no SAP standard interface available for certification

How to obtain: Download SAP Mobile Development Kit at -> Downloads -> for Mobile


SAP Partner Connectivity Kit (for SAP Exchange Infrastructure)
SAP Partner Connectivity Kit (PCK) provides platform for development, deployment and testing of individual JCA Resource Adapters. SAP PCK enables companies to:
– exchange XML documents with their business partner’s SAP Exchange Infrastructure
– exchange documents between the customer’s remote areas and their headquarter’s SAP Exchange Infrastructure
– develop own adapters

Interfaces, suitable for testing: NW-XI-AF

How to obtain: To get SAP PCK license please contact your local SAP subsidiary at

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  1. Peter Inotai
    Hi Martin,

    Thanks for this detailed overview.

    Do you have any info if MiniWAS ABAP Engine for Windows is planned for release 6.40 or 7.00?


      1. Peter Inotai
        Hi Martin,
        Thanks for your feedback.
        Ps: I still hope, that someone from SAP having some info about this (and visiting SDN) will add some comment to this weblog.
  2. Bradley Manning
    Martin, is the IDES system only available to SAP customers licensed in each software component involved? i.e. Is this system ‘out of reach’ from a cost perspective for the average SAP consultant moving from client site to client site?


  3. ECS Support
    Hi Martin,

    the mentioned link to a list of integration scenarios seems not to work on my laptop. Can you provide me with another link for download.


  4. Ashwini Kumar
    I am trying to install the EP on my machine using the sneak peek. However, the wizard keeps showing an error. I tried using the uninstaller and then reinstalled it but had the same issue- except that the wizard now stopped on a different step. Even in the uninstall the MaxDB does not get removed

    My question is:

    – IS there a way to completely uninstall the EP components from my machine?
    – Is there a good way to troubleshoot the wizard so that we can figure out the problem?
    – Any other thoughts on the issue?

  5. Markus Hochreiter
    Hi Martin,
    thanks for you detailed information. I need a test System for my company which have the following features:
    1. SAP GUI Access
    2. Systems (SAP ERP + SAP XI) used only by my company
    3. Licence to make ABAP developments

    is the SAP RAC Service Standard the right thing for me? I’m not sure if I have this system exclusive for me. I’m not sure if I can’t make ABAP development.

    can you help me?

  6. Trond Stroemme

    I see these opportunities are restricted to the US and Germany. Is SAP allowed, under EU law, to restrict it’s offering to one specific EU member state? Frankly, I don’t believe so, and I would like to hear SAP’s take on this…


    1. Martin Vierling Post author

      which of the opportinties do you exactly mean?
      If it is the former SAP NetWeaver Development Subcription then please note:
      The SAP NetWeaver Development Pack is no longer available to first time buyers, however it will remain available until April 1, 2010 to current license holders who wish to renew.  The program will be removed from the SCN shop after April

      1. Trond Stroemme

        thanks for a quick reply. I still don’t see what’s going to replace this subscription option – is the Netweaver Development pack available in any European country, and what does it include? What about prices?

        Sorry, but I’ve tried to access a few of the links on the SDN pages but they seem to either point to the obsolete subscription pages or provide incomplete info. Is there a way for independent developers to develop ABAP applications legally (not using the sneak previews), where is it available, and what does it cost?


        1. Claudine Lagerholm
          Hello Trond,
          The subscription program was offered on a very limited basis in the US and Germany only and it’s being completely discontinued as of April 1st. It was never offered in other countries.  The best alternative is to purchase a perpetual NW development license (one that does not expire every year) through sales in the country where you live. Alternatively, if you are a PartnerEdge partner, you could get a partner license through your partner manager. I hope this helps. Best,

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