Introducing ASE Cockpit
ASE Cockpit is planned to be a new User Interface (or Tooling) component for ASE, and is planned to be released in 2015.
The User Interface (or Tooling) of ASE Cockpit will manage ASE. It is targeted as an essential companion tool for a Database Administrator (DBA) of ASE. In comparative terms, ASE Cockpit release in 2015 will be to ASE as:
- HANA Cockpit released in Q4 2014 is to HANA
- IQ Cockpit released in Q2 2014 is to IQ
- ESP Cockpit released in Q2 2014 is to ESP
The “Cockpit” approach is being adopted and launched by several SAP Database products as a concerted approach to simplified and unified tooling. There are several underlying characteristics of these Cockpits, some of which we will address below. (All possible angles of this vast topic have not been covered in this blog. But a few more blogs are planned in future, that may eventually do justice to this topic.)
Is ASE Cockpit somehow related to DBA Cockpit?
No, ASE Cockpit is different from DBA Cockpit. They share the same suffix “Cockpit”, but their scope (or roles) are different.
DBA Cockpit (and Solution Manager) are distributed with SAP Business Suite (or SAP NetWeaver stack) products, and not distributed with ASE standalone database.
Furthermore, DBA Cockpit is meant to be used by a System Administrator (SA) to manage the underlying databases in the context of the SAP Business Applications that are using that database, and not necessarily the detailed database management that is typically required of a DBA. ASE Cockpit, on the other hand, is intended and targeted for the tasks and roles of the DBAs of SAP ASE.
To summarize, both ASE Cockpit and DBA Cockpit have their role to play, have some functionality overlaps, and are planned to continue. They each will still focus, position and align on their unique scope for their intended role or persona.
One ASE Cockpit for One ASE Server (1:1)
The term “Cockpit” signifies a “console” that can directly operate the device or server that it was installed with. This implies, there is a 1:1 association of an ASE Cockpit with its ASE Server. This is just like the 1:1 association of an Airplane “Cockpit” with its aircraft. So, the ASE Cockpit to ASE Server relationship across several instances of ASE Servers will be as follows:
- ASE Cockpit #1 will manage ASE Server instance #1
- ASE Cockpit #2 will manage ASE Server instance #2
- ASE Cockpit #3 will manage ASE Server instance #3
- so on …
This is similar to how Cockpits for HANA and IQ operate with their deployed Servers as well. See the diagram below that shows ASE Cockpits 1:1 association alongside other SAP Databases that also have their Cockpits.
Figure: Illustration of Cockpits of ASE, HANA and IQ
The release vehicle for a Cockpit component will be their Server product. And the same is true of ASE Cockpit that will be released with ASE releases.
ASE Cockpit up-and-ready with minimal setup
Cockpits across SAP Database products are providing an experience of readiness; i.e., Cockpit gets installed by default with its Server product, and is up-and-running to manage the Server it was deployed with. The same is true of ASE Cockpit. As soon as the ASE Server is installed (or deployed), its ASE Cockpit is expected to be able to manage it with minimum additional steps.
Compare this expectation of simplicity in ASE Cockpit with that of SAP Control Center (SCC) 3 for ASE. SCC 3 requires a separate installation after ASE was installed, a separate start of the SCC 3 service, separate registration of ASE Servers, separate registration of Agents, assigning the ASE Servers to appropriate perspectives, etc. Many of these steps have either been eliminated or simplified in ASE Cockpit.
ASE Cockpit to have server-side logic and browser-based UI
For further clarity on platform and version compatibility of Cockpit instance; note that a Cockpit component is co-located with its deployed Server instance. This means a Cockpit supports the same machine, version and platform of Server with which it was installed or deployed. This is going to be true of ASE Cockpit as well; in that the ASE Cockpit is going to be co-located on the same machine+version+platform as its ASE Server instance. For comparison, SCC 3 for ASE was supported on fewer platforms than ASE, whereas the ASE Cockpit component is planned to support every platform its ASE release vehicle (or version) supports.
Cockpits’ user interface (UI) are taking a browser-based UI approach across SAP Databases; and working towards eventually replacing any Eclipse or other thick-client desktop-application UI. ASE Cockpit user interface will also, similarly, be browser-based UI. There are some good justifications to having a browser-based UI for ASE Cockpit:
- Firstly, the intent of making ASE Cockpit user interface to be browser-based was to allow remote access to its ASE Server, simultaneously from various users using a variety of user devices that support a browser. Even as the actual ASE Cockpit logic resides co-located on the ASE Server machine, browser-based UI access would enable the user to use his choice of device (with a browser) to manage the ASE. For instance, this would prove useful in scenarios where the ASE Server is located in a Data Center or Cloud, while the user manages it via a user device with a browser.
- Secondly, a single “software patch/upgrade” to the server-side instance of ASE Cockpit component would update the ASE Cockpit UI of all users and on all their variety of devices, at once and consistently. To appreciate this, realize that such an “one-shot upgrade” of UI on all your devices saves you the effort of otherwise requiring to upgrade the same desktop-application on all your devices one-by-one.
What happens to SCC 3 for ASE going forward?
SAP’s direction is to invest in Cockpit approach going forward for its Database products. For the ASE releases that provide ASE Cockpit, SCC 3 for ASE may not be packaged in that ASE release.
SCC 3 for ASE will still be supported for previous ASE releases that are in support. In a transition phase of introducing and launching ASE Cockpit, where ASE Cockpit adoption and migration from SCC 3 take place, SAP will monitor and review the needs of existing SCC 3 for ASE customers.
Please call or write to us with your inputs and feedback on this plan/direction. A lot of these changes have come from the feedback we have received in the past, e.g., to simplify installation, setup and configuration for SCC 3 before you can get started to manage ASE with it.
We want to emphasize that the launch of the ASE Cockpit will just be the first step in our intended continuous process of innovations for ASE Tooling. And your inputs and requests would shape the requirements for our future tooling releases. Please contact us if you are interested in a Design Partner type engagement on ASE Tooling.
We understand and appreciate that each such transition or migration is not effortless, despite our best attempts and planning to make it simpler. Yet we believe we are heading down this path because we believe this will be the better, simpler, aligned, and unified plan across our SAP Database stack further down the path.
Jump to a sub-topic in this blog:
- Introducing ASE Cockpit
- Is ASE Cockpit somehow related to DBA Cockpit?
- One ASE Cockpit for One ASE Server (1:1)
- ASE Cockpit up-and-ready with minimal setup
- ASE Cockpit to have server-side logic and browser-based UI
- What happens to SCC 3 for ASE going forward?
- Next … “What’s new in ASE Cockpit?”