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Solution Manager Document Management –
Using SAP Knowledge Workbench

This blog describes how to efficiently download all documents from a specific project to your local PC (or network) using the SAP Knowledge Workbench.

The blog also includes the set up of the Knowledge Workbench and how to establish the connection between SAP Knowledge Workbench and
SAP Solution Manager.


SAP Knowledge Workbench is installed on your computer as part of the SAP GUI setup
(if not, please install latest SAP GUI and include SAP Knowledge Workbench)

You got sufficient authorisation in Solution Manager to access the Knowledge Warehouse (ideally admin rights for that area)

Step 1: Configure Knowledge Workbench

The SAP Knowledge Workbench is a windows program that comes with your SAP GUI installation. once installed you should find it in:

Start ->Programs -> SAP Front End -> Sap Knowledge Warehouse -> Knowledge Workbench

Windows Start Menu

At the first start of the Knowledge Workbench you need to set up the environment. First you will need to choose or create a work directory for
the Knowledge Workbench:

create directory for Knowledge Workbench


Example directory

Result: SAP Knowledge Workbench is configured for use.

Step 2: First connection to Solution Manager

After that step the program will display a SAP log on screen. The details are taken from the user logon (windows) and the SAP log on GUI (system entries),
but also can be entered manually.

WARNING: I still haven’t figured out why, but often your SAP password has to be all upper case, since the Knowledge Workbench seems to convert the
entries to upper case when you log on to SAP (good old SAP fashion, but even in GUI 7.10 Patch 14 it is still that way).
If log in gets rejected, try to set your password (transaction su01 in Solution Manager) to upper case and numbers / symbols only,
or you will risk to lock your user in Solution Manager.

Log On to your SAP Solution Manager:

Solution Manager log on details

Once you manage to get the connection and the user / password combination right, most likely you will still get another error message.
This message tells you that you are using the wrong version of knowledge workbench:

Error message

Result: You can connect the Knowledge Workbench to your Solution Manager

Step 3: Maintain the SAP Knowledge Workbench Version
in your Solution Manager:

This step is optional and only needed if you got the error message in Screen5.

You have to configure table IWBSETTING as described in SAP Note 336968

The SAP note contains all information, once applied for you version you should be able to log on to SAP Solution Manager using the Knowledge Workbench.
Funny enough you most likely will be using a later version than maintained, although the error message tells you something different.

Result: You configured your Solution Manager to be used with your Knowledge Workbench version

Step 4: Add the project that you want to download
to your favorites:

We assume that you have set up SAP Knowledge Workbench and can connect to your Solution Manager system that contains the documentation.

work area of Knowledge Workbench

Your SAP Knowledge Warehouse will display a pretty empty screen with your favorites (most likely none) and you local repository
(the content of the folder that we set up earlier, it should be empty too).

To download the documents from a project you will need to add it to your favorites first.

In your work area (see screen 6) choose from the menu:

Edit – Find – Folder in SAP Knowledge Warehouse

As value for area use “Solution Manager”,

As value for folder search for your project name (ZEST in this case, it is the project name that was used in solar_project_admin during set up of the project)

As result you should now see a folder for your project:

search result for project

Highlight the project and click the “Choose” button

Skip the next screen with OK (I forgot to take the screenshot … sorry)

Your Knowledge Workbench should look similar to this now:

project content

Right click on the project description in the structure view and choose add to favorites.

Result: You have added the project, that you want to extract documents from to your favorites in the Knowledge Workbench

Step 5: Download all or some documents
to your local computer / network

Open the project that you want to download from your favorites in the SAP Knowledge Workbench
(if you followed the Blog so far you will still be in the project).

Highlight all document using Ctrl-A

select documents for download

Choose menu “Info Object – Check Out – Check Out for reading”

Even when in the same network as the Solution Manager server, I often encounter problems during the download that result in error messages at
the end of the download.

However this is not a major problem, if errors are returned just repeat the step; it will not download retrieved files again,
but does download the missing ones.

An ABAPer would say if sy-subrc ne 0 loop …

Means, repeat this step over and over again until you do not get any error, to ensure that you downloaded all required documents.
(My personal best – or better worst – is 7 times, please let me know if you are able to beat it).

Result: All of your files are downloaded to your PC into the directory that we set up in step 1.

Step 6: Consolidate your documents on your hard disk.

Once the files are checked out for reading they are in the local repository. You can find them in some more or less random structure.
This might be a bit disappointing for you; you have got all files now but it is near to impossible to work with them as you can see from Screen 10.

directories on disk

The way I collect all documents is pretty simple. I just search for *.* in my download folder including all subfolders:

search and you will find

Then I usually sort the result by file type to exclude the cotrol files generated by the Knowledge Workbench.

search result

From here you can copy or move the documents to any place on your computer or network.

Result: All documents (or desired documents) from a project are downloaded to your computer.

Additional information:

  • The files are checked out for reading, which means that they are not checked out in your solution manager transactions solar01 and solar02.
    You can still access and change them.
  • You should be able to get a similar result by using the SAP Knowledge Warehouse transactions (ib51 etc. as far as I remember).
    However I am not familiar enough with those transactions to assist you
  • Theoretically you can repair, force the check in and upload documents through the SAP Knowledge Workbench. I never used these options
    and when I tried I didn’t get far. So I gave up because I didn’t see too much value.
    If you are able to use any of the functionalities, I would be more than pleased to hear back from you
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  1. Suchit Malia
    Hi Markus,
    This is really interesting topic and appreciate your presentation on the topic.
    Since this quite new subject to me as i have not worked on KW before and you have good exposure on it, so would like to have your opinion on the following points, which are actually about the capabiities of SolMan KW:
    1. Any clear presentation or document stating the capabilities of SolMan KW?
    2. Lets assume we have both SAP SolMan and SAP KW in our landscape. So can we use SolMan KW to same potential as we use SAP KW?
    3. With SAP KW, we can call document from Application Help (from respective Transactions). Can this be achieved through SolMan KW also?

    Suchit Malia

    1. Markus Mueller Post author
      Hi Suchit,

      Please do not get confused with terminology,  there is 2 different components that I am referring to:
      1)     The SAP Knowledge Workbench which is a windows program that connects to the SAP Knowledge Warehouse. It is installed with your SAP GUI.
      2)     The SAP Knowledge Warehouse that is a Netweaver component of your SAP installation (any installation, such as ECC, CRM, Solution Manager etc.).
      The Knowledge Warehouse is part of your standard installation, you can see the version if you click in your SAP menu on System -> Status and then on the magnifying glass. You will find an entry starting with SAPKW***** in there, so do not worry about setting up something additionally.
      As mentioned I am not an expert around KW, for me it is good enough that it is always there.
      For your questions:
      1.     If you need more information on Knowledge Warehouse I recommend reading the SAP help first:
      2.     Do you have a separate installation for Knowledge Warehouse? Usually it is part of your system
      3.     Within Solution Manager you should be able to do that, but as I said, I am not an expert in that.

      1. Suchit Malia
        Hi Markus,
        Thanks for your reply. I got the point, infact this topic itself is so new to me that i completely misinterpreted.
        Anyways,coming back to my concerns:
        1. Yes, we have separate SAP KW System which is being used for providing process documentation from application help.
        2. We have to get rid of this another system and use potentials of SolMan KW, if possible.
        I will start a thrad on this also. And thanks a lot fo your response.
        Suchit Malia
  2. Pavel Rumyantsev

    Thanks for the article.

    Maybe you can help me with my problem. I performed all the steps according to the instruction, but folder in SAP KW is empty. I chose  the right project with the documents.

    Thanks for the help.


  3. Natalya Timchouk

    Dear all,

    according to SAP Note 1876717 the usage of SAP Knowledge Workbench (KWB) for Solution Manager content is NOT anymore allowed / supported.

    If you use KWB for receiving printed versions of your document, you can use the standard function from transaction SOLAR01 (“Business Blueprint”->”Generate Blueprint Document”). The generated MS Word document (saved on your PC) will contain project document according to your selection.

    If you need other functions from KWB, please contact support for SolMan.

    Best regards, Natalya Timchouk


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