Cross Landscape Distribution – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 1
With Focused Solutions SAP provides a new add-on concept for SAP Solution Manager.
The Focused Build Solution is designed to provide a ready-to-run process for agile projects. Parts of these agile process enhancements can be also beneficial for your current implementations and used to enhance your daily life with the SAP Solution Manager. In this blog series, I would like to describe a few standalone enhancements in more detail, which can be very helpful in special situations and can be used independently from the requirements to deploy process from Focused Build.
In the first part, I would like to introduce a standalone extension called “Cross Landscape Distribution.” This extension is particularly useful for you when you have implemented or plan to implement Change Request Management with SAP Solution Manager.
Many customers have multiple landscapes and rising demand to synchronize customizing or development objects between these landscapes.
Common Use Cases (to name just a few)
- Syncronize the customizing for identical tables in different system landscapes
- Synchronization for development objects for basis or user management
- Global developments & customizing that need to be in sync with local implementation landscapes
SAP tried to solve this issue in the past with customizing distribution within SAP Solution Manager. This procedure was a valid solution for customizing problems. However, this solution did not work for every customizing or workbench object. One of the weaknesses was the integration in the change request management of SAP Solution Manager. The Cross Landscape Distribution Enhancement is designed to address these problems and provides an integrated solution as part of your Change Request Management process.
Cross Landscape Distribution (XLD)
The XLD is a guided procedure that can be opened from the transport assignment block of your source change. The guided procedure supports you with the selection of the correct target and automates the distribution of your change to a new landscape.
As a target, you can either select a different change from another landscape or directly select a different transport for a landscape that is not yet connected with Change Request Management.
When the distribution starts, the XLD executes the following steps automatically:
- Create the Transport of Copies with all or filtered list of objects from the source change
- Import this Transport of Copies into the development system of the target landscape
- Repack the object list from the Transport of Copy into the target transport.
Does it always overwrite the objects in the target system?
Yes, that is its purpose. XLD is not a conflict detections tool that you should use when you have parallel changes in different landscapes (SAP Solution Manager provides Retrofit for this kind of problems). XLD provides you the flexibility to distribute all transportable changes from one landscape to any other landscape. To compensate for this total flexibility, we also provide three different levels of control to limit this flexibility and tune it to exactly to the amount you need.
Level 1: You have the option to control XLD via a specific authorization object but allow all objects to be distributed everywhere. (maximum flexibility, minimal control).
Level 2: Define specific source and target change cycles or development systems. (medium flexibility, medium control).
Level 3: Define detailed object lists with target systems. For customizing, you can define customizing groups, for workbench you can define the distribution based on the package the objects belongs. (minimal flexibility, maximum control).
For the Level 3, we also provide a specific consistency condition that will stop any change process when the change contains one of the defined objects but is not yet distributed. Therefore, XLS can ensure that all systems remain synchronized when you maintain your list of global development objects.
In the next release, further automation of the distribution process is planned. We are working on options to automate the creation of target transports and target changes so that you do not have to select these targets manually anymore.
If you are looking for more information about Focused Build and other Focused Solutions, please take a look at these Resources:
Other Articles of this Series:
- Cross Landscape Distribution – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 1
- Repack – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 2
- Simple IT Request – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 3
- Test System Refresh – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 4
- Release Batch Import – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 5
- Cut-Over Checks & Activities – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 6 (coming soon)
This is good article for Cross landscape distribution. Couple of technical questions regarding the automation process specified towards end of this Article.
Good questions. This post is not up to date anymore.
The automation is available from SP3/SP4.
With SP3 we also redesigned the customizing for Distribution Groups. They contain detailed Objects specification and Packages/Development Classes.
Stefan Doktor, an excellent summary on XLD.
Would it be possible to create a custom action to complete the automated XLD during the transport release? We are using strict mode so I would think this should be possible but I don't see any focused build actions available when trying to define this.
If you could provide some guidance it would be greatly appreciated.
in the current release, there is only the consistency check that you can add to your charm Workflow that ensures the distribution is done.
The automation I mention in this article at the end is available with ST-OST 4 or 5, but in this version, it still requires to press a button. We are working on a more automated version for one of the next releases where you can set up the distribution targets and objects once and it will automatically distribute transports in a specific state with a batch job or via a ppf action. But that's still in development.
Could you kindly share the updates about automation of distribution (i.e.without pressing a button)?
Thank you in advance!
If you look into the current Config Guide you find information how to setup the distribution based on the status change https://help.sap.com/doc/59abbad28d5343f38faff834d641ecaa/290/en-US/FocusedBuild_ConfigGuide_900.pdf
Chapter 184.108.40.206 Add Automated Distribution to status switch.
Instead of pressing the distribute button it will trigger a distribution when the user changes the status of the transaction.
i already ask that in another blog:
for using g the automated XLD and STRICT Modus, you need to use Phase Cycles? because then in my case i cannot use the automated function with continual cycles, correct?
I'm not aware of any limitation regarding cycles. It should work with all cycle types.
yes i was wrong but i'm struggling now with the "Automated Distribution to status switch".
I have activated /SALM/IM_CM_XLD_PREPAREDIST assigned the action S1_XLD into my ZMMJ E0016-Status (thats my own new status for "successfully tested" after E0004 "To be tested").
and i also made editable the UI for creating new transport request in both Status (E0004 and E0016)
or do i need to assign the action CREATE_REQ_W too.
in the FB Config Guide you'll find:
Using /SALM/IM_CM_XLD_PREPAREDIST might work too, but it needs to be started for a status, which allows to create new transport requests.
it works very well when i hit the button (automatic distribution) but it would be great to work automatically too 🙂
what have i missed maybe (i work in ZSOLMANPRO as maybe you know from another blog)
can you elaborate more about whats your problem ? i don't understand it from your description.
xld Automated Distribution via status switch works now as described in the config-guide.
the customizing "Allowed Target Change Cycles - via Status" was not correct done in my case.
thank you very much
Hello Stefan Doktor,
Can XLD work on a custom Business role (like ZSOLMANPRO) or only in the default one provided by Focus Build?
I was thinking if there is a way to prevent multiple business roles to be created for this functionality to work, otherwise, there will be way more configurations to be done in ChaRm than only activating this standalone extension.
you can also add XLD in ZSOLMANPRO. just look at the comments in the blog from Stephan about the REPACK - Standalone CHARM Repack – Focused Build Standalone Extensions Part 2 | SAP Blogs.
i use it already in my ZSOLMANPRO, but have problems to use the S1_XLD Action for the automatic distribution.
the customizing for certain fields sometimes differ in the source and target system. as far as I know, XLD does not support this. Do we have to use customizing distribution within SAP Solution Manager for such cases or is it planned to provide such a functionality within XLD?
you need to use customizing distribution or manuell do it via BC-Sets.
XLD is based on Transport and that is technically not possible if the object in source and target systems are different.
thanks for the quick answer! is it a valid approach to strategically rely on XLD and only in cases (objects) where there are differences between customizing in the source and target system to rely on SCDT. Is this at all feasible from a technical point of view to control which tool to be used at the object level (for example to use SCDT for specific customizing tables and ignore these tables by XLD)?
I can't see a reason why this should not work. Both SCDT and XLD have the possibility to specify the objects that need to be distributed and where.
XLD works well with Workbench and Customizing where the Objects are Identical
SCDT works for most customizing and can handle also customizing where objects between systems are not 100% identical.
You just need to make sure that for a specific customizing object you only use one of those methods.
Thank you Stefan!