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One of the more common system maintenance tasks is updating the kernel on SAP systems. The video below demonstrates the process of using JSPM to deploy the kernel. Using JSPM provides a simpler, automated process over the manual process.

Updating the SAP Kernel Using JSPM

Since this process restarts the SAP Applications running on the local system, patching the kernel should be done during schedule downtime. Our test server is a Windows 2003 64-bit server running on a Quad Core system with 4GB RAM. The total time to complete the deployment was approximately 15 minutes. The amount of downtime will depend on the SAP services and normal times to stop and start each SAP system.

Best Regards,
Storm Archer
SAP NetWeaver Product Manager
SAP Labs, LLC.

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22 Comments

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  1. Jürgen Mayer
    You’re right, I also guess this is not the most common way of patching the kernel, but it seems to be a comfartable one…

    btw.: which tool did you use to produce the video/the screen captures?

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    1. Storm Archer Post author
      Hi Juergen,

      I’m glad you liked the video. Using JSPM to patch the kernel takes a lot of the manual effort out of the process.

      To master the video, I used Techsmith Camtasia Studio. The process to master a video is pretty fast and easy.

      Best Regards,
      Storm

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  2. Anonymous
    Hi Storm,

    Nice video. Till now we were updating our server manually and I think this is a good way forward. However, I have the below questions:

    1) You copied 6 files in total to the EPS/in folder. Can you tell me what are the use of the other 3 files that are not ending with .SAR extension
    2) When you do a kernel upgrade on a UNIX box, we need to make sure that services like SAPOSCOL and all are stopped. Also owner of some files (in the kernel folder) will be different. I am not sure that JSPM will be able to overwrite those files on its own. More likely that JSPM will fail in this step (I am not sure)
    3)Also, how do I force a deployment using JSPM. In SDM there is an option for this. JSPM will not deploy if the SC’s to deploy are in verion lower/or same as the existing ones.

    Please do have a look when you get some time.. 🙂

    Regards,
    Hemanth

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    1. Storm Archer Post author
      Hi Hemanth,

      Thank you for the comment. Here are the answers to your questions:

      1) When you download the support packages/updates from the SMP, you receive the patch itself and an information file. This file contains information and notes about the package. Here is an example of the JSPM17 patch:

      rowstartpatch name     JSPM17
      rowstartpatch level     0
      rowstartpatch     date          patchtext
      rowstart    0   2008/10/13     SP 17 for JAVA SP MANAGER 7.00, note
      1245010

      2) JSPM does stop all services including SAPOSCOL during the update process. The log folder under JSPM contains the logs confirming the execution. I did verify that this was the case on my Linux test system. However, there is some post patch handling that needs to occur.
      Example from my Linux test server:

      Pre-JSPM Patch

      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys  1894208 Jan 23  2008 saplicense
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys      553 Jan 23  2008 sapmanifest.mf
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys      568 Jan 23  2008 sapmanifestdb.mf
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys   853553 Jan 23  2008 sapmscsa
      -rwsr-x— 1 root   sapsys   940915 Jan 23  2008 saposcol
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys   637354 Jan 23  2008 sapparar

      Post-JSPM Patch

      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys  1919808 May  5  2008 saplicense
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys      553 May  5  2008 sapmanifest.mf
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys      568 May  5  2008 sapmanifestdb.mf
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys   882225 May  5  2008 sapmscsa
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys   948944 May  5  2008 saposcol
      -rwxr-xr-x 1 bwdadm sapsys   637994 May  5  2008 sapparar

      As you can see, the ownership and permissions have been changed by JSPM. The correction for this is SAP Note: 884281. You could also use chown and chmod to update the file manually.

      3) In the scanning phase, the inbox and system are evaluated for version comparison. If a package has already been deployed, why would you want to re-deploy it? Only deploying new packages has been been best practice since SPS 10.

      Best Regards,
      Storm

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  3. Anonymous
    Hi Storm,

    Thank you for the reply.
    The only reason I asked the 3rd doubt was that we get requests from developers to deploy SC’s which have only 1 dc amended in it. In this case, we are forced to use the “TELNET” option (in new servers as no SDM is present) and JSPM does not have a force deploy option….

    Warm regards,
    Hemanth

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  4. J. David Stanton Jr.
    All I see are the intro paragraphs and a big empty space on the page, then the comments. What do I need to see the video? (my PC has WinXP, IE6, Flash Player 10)
    (0) 
    1. Storm Archer Post author
      Hi David,

      The video is hosted on Blip.TV in flash format. Internally, we use IE7 on XP and have the flash IE plug-in. The video appears in the blog with a play button on my configuration.

      Can you try to access the site on another computer?

      Best Regards,
      Storm

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      1. J. David Stanton Jr.
        Some combination of updating the Flash player to version 10, updating the Flash ActiveX control, and allowing access to blip.tv through our enterprise Surf Control lets me see the video.

        Thanks for your help.

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    1. Storm Archer Post author
      Hi Sumit,

      Yes, reverting back to an older kernel is fine. Reverting back is usually a manual process and depends on how the backup was taken. Please note that JSPM does not provide backup functionality for the kernel being replaced. Best practices for applying maintenance to a system should always be followed; system snapshots or backups should be done prior to any maintenance.

      Best Regards,
      Storm

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  5. Sunil Kulkarni
    Hi Storm,
             Thanks for the blog. This new feature of JSPM will save a lot of efforts in kernel upgrade. Indeed very helpful.
    How it can be used in a distributed environment, where a Dialog instances is on another machine.

    Regards
    Sunil

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    1. Storm Archer Post author
      Hi Sunil,

      The start process for the SID executes the SAPCPE service first. This process will synchronize local binaries with the Central Instance (CI) when the binaries are stored locally. In heterogeneous environments, kernels are stored by platform. Please see SAP Note 19466 for a description of the directory layouts. Also, please see my blog: SAP NetWeaver 7.x Kernel Updates Explained Part II
      for more information on the kernal processes.

      Please let me know if you have further questions.
      Best Regards,
      Storm

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      1. fleming nett
        Hi Storm,

          Deployed the kernel patch successfully through JSPM but sapcpe.exe could not be started and in RED state for Windows machine

        NW 7.01

        The system is up and Running

        Please suggest to get rid of sapcpe issue

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    1. Storm Archer Post author
      Hello Hemanth,

      Good article. It is always good to know the manual way to accomplish these routine tasks. When you have an automated tool available, that certainly presents a number of advantages.

      You article is a great addition to the blog.

      Best Regards,
      Storm

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      1. Hemanth Kumar
        Hi Storm,

        I do completely agree.
        I have seen customers with NW O4 having issues with kernel upgrade as there is no JSPM available and manually only this is possible.

        Kind regards,
        Hemanth

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        1. Storm Archer Post author
          Hi Hemanth,

          Agreed, when I was a consultant for the Americas this was one of the biggest knowledge transfer pieces that I had to convey to the customers. The big challenge was being able to identify how to recover from problems in the kernel upgrade and ensuring that the correct versions are installed.

          Best Regards,
          Storm

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