A lot of information has already been published on HANA Enterprise Cloud (HEC) in the form of blogs, announcements and SAP documentation. As consultants become engaged from a services perspective to help customers determine their “HEC fit” and migration path, we frequently encounter and answer many of the same questions. For example, what happens if SAP applications aren’t supported on HANA today? Can I run SAP applications that do not have databases like SAP Web Dispatcher to HEC? How do my on-premise systems get migrated to HEC? What kind of network do I need between my existing datacenter and HEC? Who does what from basis and system administration perspective? The answer to these questions help the customer realize the value of HEC and the transformation opportunities it presents to quickly move to HANA and scale their enterprise.
Our goal behind this blog series is to provide our experiences in order to give you a better understanding of the HEC offering. We’ll focus on common scenarios, use-cases, challenges and common questions we encounter from customers on a day to day basis.
As you probably know by now, HEC was announced earlier this year at Sapphire and is an infrastructure that provides cloud infrastructure for customers to run their SAP systems on HANA (the project was formerly known as Petabyte). Read more here.
We would first like to provide a quick overview of HEC and clarify a few common questions:
- SAP HEC is a private cloud offering for hosting and managing SAP HANA solutions
- In addition to the licenses, there is a managed services portion that contains a monthly subscription fee (Infrastructure Operation of your HANA based system). Additionally, SAP offers Application Management Services to manage applications end to end.
- HEC is an elastic offering in terms of scaling, and resources can be added via change request process which will be available in online tool coming soon.
- Each customer uses an isolated landscape in HEC—you could say Landscape as a service—and is a collection of VMs and physical systems (e.g. HANA). These systems in the landscape are connected to a dedicated VLAN that separate customer landscapes from each other. This provides tremendous flexibility for customer to choose when to upgrade applications and how they are configured/deployed. This was done strategically and based on customer input, you can read more about HEC & multi-tenancy here.
- From a data center connectivity perspective, a network connection via VPN or MPLS is currently supported by HANA Enterprise Cloud and would be put in place to establish secure connectivity between the customer network and HEC. The customer works with a telecom provider to determine best connection based on interface and volume requirements and establishes the pipe between their network and SAP HEC.
- HEC is a bring your own license model–your existing HANA licenses are used in HEC applications.
- From a deployment perspective, the HEC can support several models. For example, some customers may only want to migrate non-production (SBX/DEV/QA) systems to the HEC. Whereas other customers want to start with their existing BW landscape and move this first to HEC and phase in the rest of their SAP applications. Another variant is the customer who wants to quickly stand up sandbox systems of new applications to support a blueprinting phase or test out an SAP application. The opportunities and combinations are endless.
Hybrid Cloud Deployments
HEC & SAP Services
In order to ensure a smooth transition to the SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud, SAP provides services that are conducted up-front to analyze the current landscape and determine fit and migration paths. There are two primary services that are conducted upfront to help a customer plan and migrate SAP Systems to HEC and then two additional services for customers once the systems are in the cloud.
In short, the outputs of this assessment is a Roadmap to In-Memory Innovation. In this service, a deep dive between SAP and customer technical teams is conducted to analyze each solution and the business requirements. During this service the existing architecture will be analyzed and a new architecture will be created. As an output of this service, a high level project plan for the migration and onboarding service is created along with rough order of magnitude (ROM) costs for both HEC infrastructure and Onboarding & Migration Services.
Onboarding & Migration Service
This is the baseline service where experienced SAP HANA experts execute on a migration plan. This could involve an upgrade to an existing system and/or an OS/DB migration to move the customer from the current OS/DB combination to SAP HANA IN HEC. This service has a high degree of automation and SAP has latest up to date skills and immediate access to development and support teams for guidance and assistance.
Cloud Hosting & Managed Services
This is the monthly subscription fee discussed above and is the required service to manage the infrastructure and can vary based customer scale and service requirements.
Application Management Services
This optional service allows the customer to have SAP manage the applications once they are deployed in HEC from an end to end perspective. For example, SAP can take over basis administration tasks, assist in new application functionality planning and rollout, and provide testing and development services.
Our goal over the next few weeks in this blog series is to deep dive into each of these services and provide you with some common Q&As and customer challenges.
About the Authors
Marty McCormick is a Practice Manager in the SAP Services Organization – Platform group with over 11 years of experience in implementing SAP technologies. He currently provides consulting services to SAP customers from strategic to tactical in the areas of technical architectures & landscape design, security and HANA solutions, including HANA Enterprise Cloud.
Fabian Dias is a Platform Practice Manager in the NA HANA/In-Memory Services CoE group with over 14 years of experience in implementing SAP technologies and HANA since 2011. He currently provides strategic & tactical services to SAP HANA customers in the areas of technical architectures & landscape design, security, including HANA Enterprise Cloud.