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Demystifying the difference Between BW on HANA, BW, Edition for HANA & BW/4HANA


With the release of BW/4HANA, there has been a lot of fuss and confusion w.r.t the differences between:


BW, Edition for HANA


and a lot of people are still not sure and needs a clear-cut, lucid answer without any verbose mumbo-jumbo, and I, personally, belong to this group.

Therefore, in this Blog, I have attempted to put things in perspective and to provide a clear and crisp answer.

I realize that in a technical world, things change at a rapid pace and if you find a fallacy in any of the facts I have provided here, I would request you to

correct me right away and I will have no issues standing corrected. I also have few things to get confirmation on and I invite others to fill in that gap..after all, this is how we all learn.

Here we go..

Questions Inputs | Insights
BW on HANA, BW, Edition for HANA and BW/4HANA…are they different versions or not Yes, they are.
Which version do we refer to BW on HANA and from which version onwards, do we say BW, edition for HANA and which version is called BW/4HANA

Start version: BW 7.3 SP5

End version: Not yet confirmed.

Current version: BW 7.5, SP04

Compatibility Mode (formerly known as BW 7.5, Edition for SAP HANA)

Minimum Prerequisite BW on HANA version: BW 7.5 SP02

This is BW on HANA + SAP BW/4HANA Add-on installed.

Before BW/4HANA was released, this mode was known as SAP BW, Edition for SAP HANA.

This mode still tolerates old objects (Infocubes, Multiproviders, DSO-classic etc)..Toleration means existing objects will not create an issue….but you cannot create/change/enhance these kind of objects.

B4H Mode (a.k.a BW/4HANA)

Minimum Prerequisite BW on HANA version: 7.5 SP04 or higher

This is Compatibility mode + Objects transferred, using transfer tool or manual +

Execution of report RS_B4HANA_CHECK_ENABLE with “Save New Mode”.

To know more about BW/4HANA, refer #BW/4HANA

Where’s the role of SUM tool here When we install the BW/4HANA Add-on, it’s done using SUM tool
Since which version is the Transfer tool available The transfer tool comes in with the BW/4HANA Add-on for which the minimum version required is BW 7.5, SP02. Therefore, inferentially, since version BW 7.5, SP02, this transfer tool can be used.

Modeling Differences:


BW, Compatibility Mode

formerly, BW, Edition for HANA)


(B4H mode)

Modify | Create

Old object types (InfoCubes, DSOs-classic, Multiprovider, Infosets, Virtual Providers, Transient Providers, SPOs based on InfoCubes/DSOs-classic


Existing old objects tolerated but cannot be modified or created.

New object types (aDSO, Composite Provider, OpenODS View etc.) can be created.

Not supported
Exception: Supported if SPO is based on Advanced DSOs (Need to confirm)

Existing Infosources

Supported Supported Not supported
Create new Infosources Supported Supported Supported
Existing Datasources Supported Supported Not supported (Need to confirm)
Create new Datasources Supported Supported Supported
Existing Process Chains Supported Supported Not supported (Need to confirm)
Create new Process chains Supported Supported Supported
Existing OpenHubs Supported Supported Not supported (Need to confirm)
Create new OpenHubs Supported Supported Supported

SAP Notes referred:

Description SAP Note

2246699 – SAP BW/4HANA Starter Add-On

Technical prerequisites for BW/4HANA Add-on
B4H mode
Transfer Tool
The note and the PDFs attached.

Happy Learning !

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      Author's profile photo Pankaj Raj
      Pankaj Raj

      Hi Debanshu

      Nice Article.

      I guess Both Compatibility Mode / B4H Mode are part of Edition for SAP HANA.

      Oncw you are in B4H Mode, it is still one step away from BW/4 HANA. You need another conversion from Edition for SAP HANA to BW/4 HANA, and I guess that Option is not available as yet.



      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Yes.  I feel same. System conversion will move from B4H to BW/4 HANA

      Author's profile photo Colm Garvey
      Colm Garvey

      Great article, the lay-man style explanation is refreshing. Will share this with some colleagues on our team. Thanks Debanshu 🙂

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Excellent on wards i will follow you...great work...!

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Nice Article Debanshu. But one doubt - Is B4H same as BW/4 HANA ? or still you are one step away and need system conversion from B4H to BW/4 HANA

      Author's profile photo Naveen Kumar
      Naveen Kumar

      I believe B4H is acronym for SAP BW/4 HANA and no system Conversion needed from B4H to BW/4 HANA.

      Author's profile photo Srinivas Popuri
      Srinivas Popuri

      Great Info.  One questions .. just curious we just installed brand new BW 7.5 SP06 HANA  system with BW4HANA starter component. RSA1 doesn't show MYSELF source system .. is this new feature? If yes, does it impact native 7.5 development ? Please share any thoughts if you know.



      Author's profile photo Regys Mene
      Regys Mene

      Great post!!...simple and clear 🙂


      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Excellent Doc, Able to understand without any confusion.