Anyone who uses Business Suite solutions – or the all-in-one SME solutions based on them – has always been aware of the option to choose their own operation system platform. This option has also been available for Business One users for some time. From now on, thanks to SAP HANA, they can also use the advantages of Linux.
The demise of the SAP Business One solution for small and midsize enterprises has often been foretold. But as you know, the condemned often live longer. In the slipstream of the perhaps more prominent solutions Business Suite (BS) or the all-in-one (AIO) SMB solutions based on it, Business One (or B1 for short) has developed magnificently. Around two years ago, SAP already reported 30,000 B1 installations.
It is also important to note that not only is Business One used by many small and midsize companies, but also by a steadily rising number of larger internationally active midsize companies and large enterprises. And, above all, in their foreign branches or subsidiaries, generally with a connection to a central SAP system (BS or AIO). Nowadays, B1 is available in no less than 40 languages!
SAP, but different
From an architecture perspective, Business One is not based on the Business Suite or on the classic 3-tier architecture; rather, it is based on a simpler, 2-tier model. The ERP solution, which is aimed at the small SME or subsidiary, is practically always packaged together with the MS Windows operating system and the MS SQL server database.
However, the times are changing, and the narrow chains are being demolished. More freedom of choice is promised. SAP HANA makes it possible. Even today, B1 users are able to benefit from SAP’s super-fast in-memory database, for example, from the FI/CO simulations available practically at the touch of a button – in conjunction with Suse Linux, which so far offers the only SAP-certified operating system platform in conjunction with HANA.
What to do
Business One customers who want to try out the use of HANA and Suse Linux, of course require appropriate support in order to master the change of architecture where possible without major inconveniences, and to rapidly implement the possibilities of the new in-memory technology together with an innovative and cost-effective operating system platform, to their advantage. As a general rule, the original B1 partner can help with this process, provided they also have HANA, Linux, and relevant integration know-how, or they collaborate with a partner whose know-how optimally enhances their own. This is the case, for example, with B1 specialist Versino AG and the infrastructure and integration experts at INES AG.
A specialist such as INES AG provides configuration of the network interfaces and hardware-side server monitoring for automatic notification in the event of a failure of hardware component as well as being able to modify various Linux configuration files according to SAP specifications – in order to ultimately guarantee optimum integration of a HANA solution in an existing customer network. The actual B1 implementation partners such as Versino AG therefore provide a platform to adapt the SAP application solution on-demand according to the relevant customer requirements, or to customize it for the go-live.
Demand-oriented, target audience-oriented HANA Business One solutions are already available. For example, from the provider Fujitsu, which supports HANA with a number of SAP-certified infrastructure solutions and services. If required, the HANA-Fujitsu solutions for B1 are already pre-installed and tested with the Suse Linux operating system and are delivered with the complete HANA software stack.
In addition, Fujitsu and Suse together with targeted initiatives of Business One partners or SAP solution providers also offer the option of comprehensive upgrades in terms of SAP HANA, as well as Linux skills. After all, customers have so far had few contact points with both the in-memory technology as well as the Linux operating system, which in larger or major companies is virtually taken for granted. B1 Systems, for example, is a Suse-Linux training provider in the Business One environment.
New beneficial applications
You do not have to be a prophet – HANA will also find its way in the Business One environment, as will the Linux approach. As for the Business Suite and All-in-One, the first step is the realization of side-by-side solutions in the form of SAP Business One Analytics.
The use of the Business Suite exclusively with HANA (for OLTP and OLAP applications) – even without the traditional relational databases, is already a reality. That the all-in-one solutions will follow is also a fact – as announced by SAP. This only leaves Business One…