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.
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:
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.
That’s it for now. Stay tuned and