We all agree that, the nature and dynamics of IT organization running SAP solutions are changing rapidly pace. The business is requesting more functionalities and new capabilities from IT. IT leaders have lots of catch up to do with the ever growing business demands.
Amidst all this, new solution is in the offering and we are seeing same excitement that we saw back in 2011 when SAP Solution Manager 7.1 was being introduced. The curiosity is high; and expectations are even higher.
Let us breakdown some of the crucial aspects, that, you as a decision maker should consider while hoping on to the new release. I would be covering Technical, Functional & Business considerations in series of blogs.
The scheduled release timeline looks more promising by now and quite a good number of customers already experimented with the Ramp Up program. The new release is expected to hit the shelves by Q3 2016. That means, if you have not spent some time in evaluating the fitment, and strategy to upgrade; you still have 3 more months to chalk out some draft plans.
- i.To or Not to Hana :
One of the much talked about topics, ever since SAP anounced that Hana is Free for Solution Manager 7.2. All customers with a valid SAP maintenance agreement can use SAP HANA as database for SAP Solution Manager. There is no additional SAP HANA licensing required. However this does not include any SAP-HANA-related hardware cost. You got to procure the hardwares from one of the certified platform vendors. If you are a first time Hana user, then this option give a distinct benefit to you, which makes the hardware investement a good bet. This could be the first system in a general to familiarize yourself with SAP HANA & you can use the SAP Solution Manager 7.2 as your first SAP HANA system for monitoring and administration. This sure gonna generate interest in your Basis teams since even they get to try and experiment Hana for the first time !
Another aspect, adopting Hana as a database to Solution Manager 7.2 reduces the licensing costs associated with solman database. That is, one less line item in your IT budget sheet w.r.t license costs. The total cost of ownership and system footprint would significantly reduce in a long run if you adopt Hana now.
- ii. Stack Split & its impact
SAP Solution Manager 7.2 is based on SAP NetWeaver 7.4. Dual-stack systems are no longer supported as of NW 7.4. As a consequence, your existing SAP Solution Manager system has to be split as part of the procedure – that is, the Java part gets extracted into a standalone system, next to the persisted ABAP system. While seperating ABAP & Java parts, you have 2 options. You can install a new Java stack without additional database, but reuses the existing database also for the new Java system, using multiple components in one database (MCOD) method. Or install a new Java stack with an additional database.
You can perform a heterogeneous system copy of your AS ABAP system to SAP HANA, including post copy activities.
Optionally, you can perform a heterogeneous system copy of your AS Java system to SAP HANA (or any other database, such as SAP ASE), including post-copy activities. By making Hana as a Database for entire 7.2 stack, everyday administration tasks become lot simpler.
- iii. To Transit or Not To:
If your organization decides immediate investment on Hana hardware is not feasible however upgrade to 7.2 is imminent, then there are alternative plans. You could opt Sybase ASE as a transit DB for your 7.2 before going for Hana DB, which allows a interim production usage period before you finally migrate to Hana.
So what is the ideal way for upgrade, stack split and eventually moving on to Hana?. One of the options for you could be Transit to Hana approach as shown below;
In subsequent posts, I would touch upon Functional and Business Considerations about adopting SAP Solution Manager 7.2.