SAP Solution Manager 7.2 architecture and migration to SAP HANA
This blog is based on the EXP session I gave at SAP TechED Barcelona. On request of SAP TechED attendees and community members who couldn’t be present at the session this blog post provides the information I have shared.
The week before SAP TechED Barcelona, I’ve spent a week at SAP Rot / SAP Walldorf to learn and discuss around SAP Solution Manager 7.2. Thanks to SAP for organizing this event to bring partners who focus on SAP Solution Manager up to date. You can find tweets and screenshots on twitter on hashtag #solman and #sapsoled2015. You can have a look at a condensed storify with screenshots here.
Source: https://service.sap.com/roadmaps “Solution Manager roadmap”
SAP Solution Manager 7.1 will reach end of maintenance at 31/12/2017 due to the fact that the AS ABAP stack is running on an old SAP Netweaver version (7.0 EHP2) and the AS JAVA stack is using an old SAPJVM 4.1 version. Those old versions run out of maintenance so an upgrade is needed.
SAP Solution Manager 7.2 will run on SAP Netweaver 7.40 (both AS ABAP and AS JAVA) and has the capability to run on AnyDB (Sybase ASE, Oracle, MS SQL, …) or on SAP HANA. The CRM component goes from CRM 7.0 EHP1 to CRM 7.0 EHP3.
SAP HANA capabilities
SAP HANA can be placed under SAP Solution Manager 7.2 without the need for a SAP HANA license. Ofcourse customers still have to pay themselves for the appropriate hardware. This is a really nice incentive from SAP if you ask me. It can help introduce SAP HANA into organisations that do not yet run SAP HANA and provide the opportunity to get used to it. That way the organisation can prepare to support SAP HANA also for Business Suite and beyond.
It’s not yet an S/4 HANA like solution so the data structures are not yet simplified in scenarios that were already existing. It’s more like Suite on HANA if one would compare the current state of capabilities and what is leveraged out of the box to the ERP side of town.
This means SAP HANA brings data size reduction comparable to moving from ERP on AnyDB to SAP HANA which is somewhere between factor 4 and 10 (if the source database was uncompressed. Factor 4 is more common) depending on what kind of data is stored (unique entries versus recurring entries which can be compressed to a larger extent).
Further, you can leverage search capabilities of SAP HANA so customers who have a SAP TREX in place for SAP Solution Manager could simplify their landscape and no longer need to use SAP TREX for search capabilities.
In terms of speed, you’ll notice it most in reporting capabilities since that selects data rather than scenarios where lots of inserts take place. However, the non optimized embedded BW is still present so in the end the system doesn’t unleash SAP HANA performance out of the box. Lots of inserts (for example in Technical Monitoring) is typical for non optimized / simplified scenarios and therefor you won’t notice a big performance difference there.
So far, standard SAP scenario’s do not specifically require SAP HANA so you could also run on AnyDB (Sybase ASE, Oracle, MS SQL,…) without missing out on scenario’s and features at this point in time (SAP HANA specific scenario’s might be on the horizon though).
Celonis, a SAP HANA start-up has created a process mining application on top of SAP HANA. This can be leveraged by ITSM to check the process flow of incident tickets. This can help the customer identify where time is lost and where tickets are ping-ponged in between different teams. This can then lead to further optimizations of support provided. I didn’t get lots of details on this yet but I assume this does comes with a pricetag since it’s created by a start-up company and can be used on top of standard SAP
More scenario’s that leverage SAP HANA will come afterwards. SAP has also started work on a next generation SAP Solution Manager (S/4 HANA principals being applied to simplify data, do direct operational reporting, get rid of indexes etc). but that’s in a really early stage still.
Moving from SolMan 7.1 to SolMan 7.2 – technical
Upgrade using SUM / Dual Stack split using SWPM
From a technical point of view, an upgrade and dual stack split takes place. This means that you’ll end up with two SID’s, one for the AS ABAP part and one for the AS JAVA part.
What is AS JAVA still used for?
AS JAVA is still used by SolMan 7.2 for diagnostics agent connectivity and root cause analysis. In theory and probably also practice you could leave it out of the CHARM Solution Manager landscape if you’ve got two Solution Manager landscapes, one for Technical Monitoring and one for ITSM and CHARM which is not uncommon for large customers.
AS JAVA could also serve the purpose of local SLD for SAP Solution Manager although in general many administrators seem to prefer a central SLD nowadays with a higher Netweaver stack version and seperated maintenance cycles.
Sometimes AS JAVA of SAP Solution Manager is used for Adobe Document Services (ADS) to serve the ERP landscape. I’ve seen this mostly at smaller customers who do not create a seperate AS JAVA instance for that purpose.
When you look at the database you also have multiple options:
One database, with two schema’s, one schema for AS ABAP and one schema for AS JAVA where both have AS stacks their own SID or a dedicated database for each.
Moving to SAP HANA
When you also move to SAP HANA you perform an OS/DB migration (can be done using SUM DMO for the ABAP stack) and also here you have the above options available. In the HANA Enterprise Cloud (HEC) at SAP, most customers who have been testing SolMan 7.2 SP0 have AS ABAP running against SAP HANA and AS JAVA running against Sybase ASE. However, as noted in the previous “chapter”, you could run both instances against SAP HANA using a separate database schema.
Moving from SolMan 7.1 to SolMan 7.2 – functional
There are a lot of changes in SolMan 7.2 so this means SAP partners and customers need to have an understanding of these conceptual changes. These are discusses already in other blog posts and video’s that you can access through the SAP Solution Manager space on SCN.
Timing wise, SP1 is the first ramp-up version, SP2 is expected around March 2016 and SP3 (General Availability) around July 2016.
Source: https://service.sap.com/roadmaps “Solution Manager roadmap”
In SAP Solution Manager 7.1 there was a big mixture of different UI technologies: SAPgui, WebDynpro, Flash, Silverlight etc… Not exactly what one would expect or enjoy in general.
This has been improved a lot from what I was already able to access in SolMan 7.2. The start point for the end-user is Fiori launchpad. You’ll notice that you different functionality or scenario’s are available as tiles there.
Someone asked me the question how handy that really is and asked me what if you want to switch to an ABAP transaction? I found it enjoyable to work through Fiori launchpad and new UI’s. It felt rather refreshing. If you want to combine the ability of calling up ABAP transactions and accessing Fiori or SAPUI5 apps, you can leverage Business Client 6 which has just recently released and can handle multiple UI types in a single front-end client.
This new user experience also has some effects on the architecture. If you would also utilize SAP HANA specific applications (running on XS for example) and you would want to combine tiles you need a Web Dispatcher to dispatch to the correct application server.
Test drive SAP Solution Manager 7.2 in the cloud (coming soon)
SAP is planning to release an image of the SAP Solution Manager 7.2 ramp-up (SP1) to SAP Cloud Appliance Library (SAP CAL). This will allows customers / partners to test drive the different SP stacks of SAP Solution Manager 7.2 ramp-up versions (on SAP HANA even) in cloud environments that are provisioned through SAP CAL (Amazon AWS for example).
Another great initiative of SAP if you ask me, I personally very much like SAP CAL / Amazon AWS capabilities to test drive products of SAP. Expected delivery would be in December.
SAP Solution Manager and SAP Mentors
The SAP Mentors are SAP’s knights of the round table if you would express it in Camelot terms. We gather up around the table with SAP to discuss where SAP is going in all product area’s of SAP. SAP Mentors are elected through the community (by community members, SAP, SAP Mentors and externals even).
We’ve got really close connections to the SAP Solution Manager executives and teams so we continuously provide feedback and collaboration on new products and services. We also represent the community at large so we value SAP Community Network and welcome feedback from community members as well as other sources like User Groups. We notice trends through our engagements and bring those forward to SAP.