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SAP HANA Cloud Platform mobile services 1.2 released

Hi there.

It’s time to talk about new features, since as of today we have released version 1.2 of HCPms.

 

Sometimes it’s not easy to weight the importance of a feature and give it the right visibility, and for this release I was really struggling on deciding which feature I would like to present first. I have decided for a developer centric one. A feature that might look simple, or obvious but in the end it greatly eases the life of developers. The feature I have in mind is SCIM support for HTTP Basic authentication.

 

SCIM Support (HTTP Basic Auth)

You may wonder about this, because you thought that BASIC auth was possible before this release and you where right. You can configure your App in the way that it accepts BASIC auth headers (or challenge you once you request a resource) against SAP ID service – which is you default IdP.

With SCIM (SCIM webpage) support you can expose the HTTP challenge that is configured directly on you OData Service. This enables you to expose the users that are configured on your services URL to be authenticated on the mobile device.

Actually there are two different version of SCIM available now. One is provided by HCP itself and the other is a mobile services specific SCIM.

The SCIM provided by HCP (and Cloud Connector) has a different scope, since it is valid for all App on you account – so XS or JAVA applications are affected as well, while the mobile specific SCIM service is only valid within mobile services and can be configured for each application differently.

 

So basically, if you would like to expose an on-Premise LDAP to your HCP account – you would use the HCP SCIM. If you want to reuse your users on a specific OData Service, then you would choose the mobile service specific SCIM.

This is (unfortunately) not available for trial landscape.

 

Preview Landscape

Many customers expresses their concerns about the loss of control of the lifecycle of their system – which is in this case HCPms. SAP controls the lifecycle, installing patches, releases, changing API and so forth. While this is one of the beauties of an as-a-Service offering, we take those thoughts serious. And with this release we offer each customer access to a preview landscape. This landscape can be requested via a self-service and is intended to be used for regression testing. The preview landscape will receive the newest release on RTC date (Release to Customers). Currently we plan to provide a minimum of thirty days preview period before we deploy the new version to the productive landscape and update all our customer landscape. During this preview period we encourage our customer to use the SAP Cloud Support to notify us about any incompatibility they found during their tests.

 

Mobile Web App Support

No, this does not mean you can host web applications in mobile services. There are other services on HCP that do this. Support for mobile web applications does mean that we now support a new type of App configurations, called “Web”. This allows you to proxy existing web hosted applications – either on the web or through the Cloud Connector for on-premise web apps (like a specific portal page).

The Web app does two things for you. First it exposes an on-premise web app and makes it available to your mobile browser on the device without the need to start a VPN connection on the device or using a special application like the SAP Fiori Client. Second, it can add authentication in front of your webpage as it would challenge your mobile browser with a login page that uses the authentication that is configured on your App – SAP ID service for example.

 

And this does work for on-premise Fiori applications as well!!

 

Administration User Experience Improvements

 

We did a log of small changes in the UI for the Admin Cockpit to improve the user experience for the users of HCPms – which are developers and administrator. It’s no fun to list all the small changes and tweaks we did. I would rather suggest that you take a look yourself. One thing I want to disclose here, though.

If you visit the Admin Cockpit the first time you’ll see this:

 

Whatsnew.png

GLAS Auditing

This is probably not the thing your are waiting for, but it’s essential for license compliance anyway. We do support the standard SAP Global Licensing Auditing Service. This allows our customers to keep track of their used licenses easily and report them back to SAP. Well, as I said, not a thing a developer wants to bother with.

 

 

Release Notification Information

We have published the following document to inform you more formally about changes in HCP mobile services. Please use the subscription feature of SCN in order to be informed about Product changes in the future.

SAP HANA Cloud Platform mobile services – Release Notification

 

 

That’s it for now. Stay tuned and

 

 

Have Fun,

Martin

3 Comments
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  • Hi, Martin.

    Could you, please, clarify my confusion by answering few questions regarding SAP Cloud Platform Mobile Services’ “Web” Config Template:

    1.  Are there any use cases for “Web”-template or using it as proxy is the only use case scenario?
    2. What is the difference between web application created with “Web”-template and SAPUI5-application deployed to Fiori Launchpad in op-premise system (for example, S4H) or in SCP Portal?
    3. Is the following scheme composed correctly (here I am trying to connect default Fiori application with oData from on-premise S4H with SCP MS):
      On-prem system (for example, S4H) -> Standard Fiori application with oData -> Cloud Connector -> SCP HTTP Destination -> SCPms HTTP Destination -> “Web”-template

    I will be very grateful if you could provide any links of step-by-step guides, use-cases and documentation regarding “Web”-template.

    Best regards,

    Nikita Elsakov

    • Hi Nikita,

      1. The “Web” template is actually to re-use the MS as an external facing access point for intranet pages. In addition, we will apply the selected authentication mechanism to the local website. So for instance, even if your local website/webapp does not have any authentication, with MS you can use your SAML/OAuth IdP to authenticate the user accessing from outside of your corporate network.
      2. The “Web”-template is not an application, it is a proxy configuration and can only point to any website, on-premises or in the cloud.
      3. Almost correct. You don’t need two Destinations (SCP) AND SCPms. You can either use the existing SCP destination and reuse it within MS, or you create a dedicated Mobile Services destination, not both.
        To my knowledge there is no end-2-end document, because the needed configuration is very dependent on what your architecture and systems look like AND the overall configuration is using multiple different services (like Cloud Connector and SCP Destinations). So you need to check the help for MS, CC and SCP Destinations and understand what your goal is, specifically in terms of Sercurity.
        Maybe helpful is the Security Blueprint for SCP that can be found here: https://cloudplatform.sap.com/scenarios/techguides.html

      Regards,

      Martin