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Basics

With SAP S/4HANA a material number with 40 characters long is supported, the material field length was extended to 40 CHAR (Material Field Length Extension – MFLE). The appropriate related SAP development entities (domains, data elements, structures, table types, and transparent tables, external and internal interfaces, user interfaces, and so on) have been adapted accordingly. Where required, automated logic is in place and executed automatically in case a customer converts his current SAP Business Suite system into SAP S/4HANA. The system behavior is depending if the extended material number functionality is switched on or NOT switched on. After the system conversion from SAP ERP to SAP S/4HANA On-Premise the default is that the extended material number functionality is switched off and need to be switched on explicitly in appropriate customizing.  For more details about the Materiel Field Length Extension in SAP S/4HANA see:
– Simplification Item – Material Number Field Length Extension: Business Impact Note: 2267140
– Material Number Field Length Extension in SAP S/4HANA SCN: Link

The extension of the material number is a well-known requirement in SAP Business Suite requested by several customers. An Add-On solution was provided several years ago as part of the industry solution Discrete Industries & Mill Products (DIMP). The so-called DIMP LAMA-functionality is a part of the industry solution Automotive which is one component of the Add-On DIMP (Discrete Industries & Mill Products). Although the industry solution DIMP is part of SAP S/4HANA, the DIMP LAMA-functionality for a long material number is not be part of SAP S/4HANA. The reason is purely based on the fact that the material number is natively extended to 40 characters within SAP S/4HANA.
– For details about the DIMP specific long material number in SAP ERP see SAP Note 1597790

System Conversion for customers using DIMP LAMA in SAP ERP

Customers using the DIMP LAMA specific long material number in SAP ERP can convert to SAP S/4HANA 1610 or subsequent editions (but not to SAP S/4HANA, on-premise edition 1511).  As part of the System Conversion to SAP S/4HANA, special conversion steps are executed within the Software Update Manager (SUM) to migrate the existing DIMP LAMA solution to the new SAP S/4HANA extended material number (short: MFLE approach). The material field length extension in SAP S/4HANA will be automatically activated and the defined maximum length of material numbers will be unchanged.
Technical System Conversion background:
–  In SAP S/4HANA on-premise edition 1511, the Business Function MGV_LAMA related to the DIMP LAMA functionality in SAP ERP is defined as “ALWAYS OFF”, therefore customers with activated Business Function are not allowed to do a system conversion to SAP S/4HANA.
– In SAP S/4HANA 1610, the Business Function MGV_LAMA is defined as “CUSTOMER SWITCHABLE”, therefore customers with activated Business Function in SAP ERP are allowed to do a system conversion to SAP S/4HANA. In that case, the Business Function MGV_LAMA stays “ON” in SAP S/4HANA when doing a system conversion.
– Note: It is not recommended to activate the Business Function MGV_LAMA in a SAP S/4HANA system.

A customer using the DIMP LAMA functionality in SAP ERP and converting to SAP S/4HANA need to consider the following information:
– Due to the complexity of the long material number solution in SAP ERP and the technical implications for the conversion, SAP strongly advises to be involved in the planning of the digital transformation phase. See SAP Note 2384347
– DIMP LAMA Conversion to SAP S/4HANA – Restrictions: 2360860
– Related Simplification Items
– Long Material Number: Business Impact Note: 2270396
– Manufacturer Part Number: Business Impact Note: 2270836

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