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Author's profile photo Marty McCormick

HANA Enterprise Cloud (HEC) Services Blog


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.

HEC Overview

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. 

SAP HEC.pngSAP HANA Enterprise Cloud

  • 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.

HEC Deployment variants.png

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.

HEC Assessment

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.


Click here for more info about SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud Services

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      Author's profile photo Markus Tempel
      Markus Tempel

      Good introduction ! Looking forward to see how this series evolves.


      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Understood that HEC is SAP IaaS offering on private cloud , Application like S4 cloud enterprise editions offered on HEC ,expecatation will be that clients implement their processes on application on HEC and operate ,correct ??  How is front end deployed to clients for accessing applications on HEC ?

      Author's profile photo Marty McCormick
      Marty McCormick
      Blog Post Author


      Hi Animesh

      I would say that HEC is more than IaaS, it is managed private cloud.  There are a full suite of services around managing the application(s) that run on HEC.  That said, the deployment of systems in HEC is very similar to OnPrem from a client tools perspective--you access using browser, SAPGUI, etc and have to fully configure the systems as part of your project.

      I hope this helps!


      Author's profile photo monica bhosale
      monica bhosale

      Hi Marty,


      Thank you for information. just one question, If we have  installed SAP PO on HEC will there be any limitation on integration with 3rd parties ? or it will work like no premise SAP PO integration?


      Thank you,


      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Thanks  Martin,


      Thank you very much for your feedback , have more query on S/4 cloud editions

      S/4 cloud edition for example 1705, Cloud editions hosting and updates are being managed by SAP only ?? If a customer is purchasing cloud editions then it inherently means that systems will be deployed to him over SAP cloud ??? OR does customer has to manage their own hosting and infrastructure for cloud editions (Consider NON HEC package) as well

      Additionally Is there any cost comparison available for on prem 1610 and 1705 in terms of licences and hosting to compare a business case


      Author's profile photo Kishore Gokara
      Kishore Gokara

      Hello Martin,

      Thanks for a good introduction. Can you please help understand the below points.

      1. How is system configurations done. Is it through a browser or users can access SAP GUI for logging into the system.
      2. When it comes to integration. How is the integration considered. Example if you have a on-premise system (say A) needs an integration with HEC system. Can we say that this integration is considered as Cloud to On-premise or its still an On-premise to On-premise integration.
      Author's profile photo Marty McCormick
      Marty McCormick
      Blog Post Author

      Hi Kishore

      Sorry for the late reply here but systems in HEC work in a very similar fashion to OnPremise systems since they are an extension of the customer network.  SAPGUI is used for configuration, and when it comes to integration it would be treated like an "OnPremise" system in the integration domains.

      I hope this helps...

      Best Regards,


      Author's profile photo Milind Karoor
      Milind Karoor

      Hi Martin,

      We want to deploy S/4 hana business suite to HEC. what are the prerequisite for it and how should    we go about the installation on HEC. Is the approach quite similar to the one that we use to deploy    applications on premise (i.e SWPM) ?


      Best Regards,


      Author's profile photo Kamal Bhargava
      Kamal Bhargava

      Hi Martin,

      Can you guide me to data transfer policies and rates information for inbound (data going in HEC) and outbound (Data going out of HEC).

      Thank you,