We have been asked by few of our clients’ IT department this question multiple times – why companies choose SLT over ODP when it comes to data extraction to SAP BW from SAP ERP/non-SAP source systems, considering additional licenses and hardware are required. Are there limitations in the functionality or even stability issues with ODP?
What comes to mind first, is it a valid question – SLT vs ODP ?
Well not really. The choice should be purely made based on the business requirements and needs. This might not seem a million-dollar question right now as it is not coming from business anyway, but it’s worth a try discussing it to understand its options and limitations.
Let me try to put down very briefly the salient features of these two pillars, and let’s see if we can really compare them along the way.
SLT for BW
SAP LT Replication Server offers a useful alternative for data transfer to BW in the following cases:
• The tables in the source are simple tables without joins or transformation logic.
• The DataSources (extractors) that you want to replace using the SAP LT Replication Server are DataSources on simple tables/views that do not provide a delta mechanism and only contain minimal extractor logic.
Two interfaces are available for transferring data using SAP LT Replication Server:
Operational Data Provisioning
• Data transfer using operational data provisioning is supported for tables from SAP systems only.
• SAP LT Replication Server provides the operational data provisioning infrastructure with the source tables as delta queues. The data from the delta queue can be replicated in BW as a subscriber.
• If you use operational data provisioning, you can load the data directly into the InfoProviders (bypassing the PSA layer) by using a data transfer process. The ODP infrastructure (with delta queues) takes over important services such as monitoring data requests. In addition, the ODP infrastructure has been prepared to support BW and other subscribers with SLT data transfer (for example, SAP Data Services).
• Data transfer using the Web service interface is supported for tables from SAP systems and for tables from non-SAP systems.
• SAP LT Replication Server replicates the data in a Web service DataSource of the BW Persistent Staging Area, where the data is available for further processing.
• If you use the Web service interface, the data can be pushed at regular time intervals to BW, where it can be updated using real-time data acquisition.
ODP(Operational Data provisioning) is a Netweaver based framework , ODQ(Operational Delta queue) is the queue for data extraction where ODP is installed as a source.
ODP is a unified infrastructure for data provisioning and consumption which supports scenarios like:
Option 1: ODP based Data Provisioning Aspects for SAP ERP Sources
ODP allows to skip the PSA layer and load directly with DTP from the source system into a DSO. So this ODQ acts as replacement of BW Service API Delta Queue (RSA7) w/o the need of collective jobs run needed earlier.
Option 2: SLT/ODP based real-time replication
SLT replication server allows loading and replicating data in real time from SAP and non-SAP source systems into SAP HANA environment. SLT allows real time and scheduled data replication, replicating only relevant data into HANA. SLT Server can act as a provider for the Operational Data Provisioning Framework (ODP) and stores data from connected SAP systems in this framework in an Operational Delta Queue (ODQ).
Option 3: ODP based data transfer between BW systems
ODP extractors can be used to transfer data between BW systems.
Good business case on Data extraction and Modelling
Re-iterating from my earlier email on this topic(attached), below is a good example which shows how SLT replicates the data to HANA DB from ECC system and then replicated data is modelled in HANA and accessed finally to BW using ODP. This is a very good example for faster accessibility to data using SLT and HANA.
Advantages of SLT
• ODP w/o SLT is only possible for BW datasources, ODQ is a replacement of RSA7 delta queue. So this becomes useful when you are dealing only with SAP ERP datasources and there is no requirement of HANA Native modelling further for Analytics.
• With SLT, its possible to replicate source tables from SAP as well as non-SAP systems which can further be used in native HANA modelling. Additionally, it also supports BW modelling. Here is the advantage of SLT which offers more flexible options.
• So, SLT is most useful when you have multiple SAP and non-SAP sources of data want to leverage the HANA Native modelling aspects and this is more aligned to future SAP roadmap.
Advantages of ODP/ODQ without SLT
- There is no additional licensing and hardware cost required for ODP extraction without SLT. Hence no additional maintenance effort is required here.
So, as we could see this is not really a straight-forward choice or answer to be put in black and white. The choice should entirely be made based upon the business requirements and needs.
Happy learning SAP HANA !