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Author's profile photo Thomas Zurek

Red Bull’s Migration of a BW to a BW-on-HANA System

In his TECHED / SAPPHIRE NOW keynote, Vishal had invited Red Bull to show the first BW-on-HANA system running at a customer site. While one can argue that this effort has been realized with some of the best experts that are available it has not been rocket science and is an excellent showcase of how things can work out if properly planned and implemented. This blog documents the process.

You can watch the demo here, starting from approx. at 42’00” and running for 10 min. The most important and most impressive message has been that the overall process ran through within 10 days. A more detailed run-down can be seen from the slide (thankfully provided by our colleagues from RB) below: software-related activities have been lined up on the left-hand side while hardware-related activities can be seen on the right. 

Red Bull Migration Timeline in Detail

The foundation for a migration process is the E2E implementation guide for SAP Netweaver BW 7.3, powered by SAP HANA. It is available on the SAP Service Marketplace; you need to have a registered user to access those documents. The E2E guide lists all fundamental decisions that you need to take and links to the appropriate and more detailed guides that are necessary to complete the effort.

Just last week, John Appleby from our partner Bluefin Solutions ran through a similar migration exercise and documented his experience in a blog entryFirst Impressions on SAP NetWeaver BW 7.3, powered by SAP HANA – amazing. Have a look as it holds additional details of the process.

PS: The Red Bull demo video is also available via YouTube:

Red Bull Demo on YouTube

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      Author's profile photo Stefan Koehler
      Stefan Koehler
      Hey Thomas,
      thanks for sharing this information and especially the video link with us. I have read the blog of John first and then watched the particular part of the SAP Teched Keynote.

      I really wonder about the fast project realization, i guess Fujitsu had to trink a lot of Redbull to get such huge and fast wings ;-))

      A hardware delivery process of round about 8 days (only 6 work days) after a vendor decision is very unusual in IT business - the usual delivery times are round about 4 weeks or so.

      As the Redbull guy states - the amount of migrated data was also not that huge (only 1.5 TB) and they always talk about TCO and landscape simplification - but at what price? The license costs of HANA are horrendous - so the statement of Vishal about that one year ago was not really true. I am pretty sure that Red Bull's old system environment with x86 and MS-SQL (as far as i can see) was much cheaper - disregarding the possible business requirements for faster response times of the BI system.

      Keep on blogging - looking forward to see some real live costing examples in the near future about HANA.

      Best Regards

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member
      Hello Stefan,

      Nice shoot :).

      There is so much performance factors in SAP BW platform that you can improve that HANA seems to be last step in constant improvement of BI platform from perspective of costs/resources. It is difficult for me to discuss technical aspects of HANA, however I have still in my mind questions regarding data consolidation from different source systems. Is Multiprovider a dinosaur :)? I still see  SAP delivering in BW content infosets for HR data models. I am little bit disappointed that SAP so easy leaves "old dogs" with not "fashionable" hair cut :). That could be indicator for improving  performance/stability  in delivered BI content, whole LIS cockpit, BW front end tools for developers ....


      BW is still for me the best DW ever anyway, cannot wait for 7.3 🙂

      Author's profile photo Thomas Zurek
      Thomas Zurek
      Blog Post Author
      Hi Stefan,
      thanks. The fundamental message of the exercise is that the technical product(s) - i.e. BW and HANA - support this quick migration. There is no obstacle at all on that end. And that's the essence!
      Yes, you can argue that reality shows that surrounding exercises like budget, ordering and delivering hardware etc. extend the overall timeline. But even here and in my eyes, Fujitsu has set an excellent standard. As there are ~8 hardware partners to choose from there is competition and whoever does the best job will make the deal. That applies to your cost argument too.
      Data volumes are no obstacle either. OK, it might take a few days longer. But it is all based on well established, known and robust migration tools.
      Regarding HANA licensing: this is not a topic that I can cover exhaustively. But one remark is necessary: there is a specific license model for running HANA (only) under BW. This is new and probably addresses some of your concerns.
      Author's profile photo Stefan Koehler
      Stefan Koehler
      Hello Thomas,
      thanks for the update.

      I have no idea about that (new) specific license model for HANA under BW - until now i just know the memory based model, where you have to pay for every GB of memory.

      Most of my concerns about the costs are not based on the hardware costs, more likely about the costs for the licensed amount of memory and in that scenario the amount of data plays an important role - but as you said there is a special license model for HANA under BW - the situation maybe changed now.

      The migration tools (R3load, etc.) are the same as for any other OS/DB migration as far as i know and so they are rock stable of course :-))

      Best Regards

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member
      The timeline to migrate BW to HANA is quite impressive for such a new technology. Redbull took 2 weeks and John Appleby's employer took 2 days to do it. This is extremely impressive for a brand new product from any enterprise vendor.

      My team's own test is taking lot longer, but not because of actual migration itself. Time is eaten up by pre-req activities of getting a 7.0 system on AIX/DB2 moved over to 7.3 and then running on Linux and so on. Then there are all the regular project stuff of data security, regression tests and so on. We are trying to mimic how things will work in real world as much as possible to get a good idea on the work involved and challenges. I am pretty confident so far that the actual migration to HANA itself will go relatively smooth.

      Upgrade to SPS 3 and patching to rev 20 itself was totally painless. Most of the big problems like partial data loss etc seemed to be less prevalent once we got past SPS 2 rev 14. Although steadily improving - even now something or the other goes wrong every now and then with each revision. Hopefully SAP is now at a stage where there are very remaining bugs.

      Author's profile photo Witalij Rudnicki
      Witalij Rudnicki
      Vijay, do not forget about these patches:
      1632070  Warehouse Management SP06: Corrections regarding HANA DB
      1644137 - Composite SAP Note: BW porting in SAP HANA DB, NW 7.30 SP06
      1644214 - Comp. SAP Note Basis porting to SAP HANA DB, NW 7.30 SP06