S/4 HANA On-Prem(ise) and S/4 HANA Cloud are probably the two terms you may have heard of. You might have also heard of terms such as Single-tenant, Multi-tenant, public cloud and private cloud. Now I am referring to Any Prem, Essentials, and Extended. What is the difference between them all? Let’s dive into them.
There are two purchasing models for SAP S/4HANA. Either you buy the licenses and own the software, or you subscribe to it. Buying licenses fall into the CAPEX model, whereas the subscription is OPEX, where you pay-per-use.
Any-Prem (formerly known as On-Prem) is what you get if you purchase licenses. This has been the ONLY model in the world of SAP R/3 and SAP ECC. This can be compared to buying an independent home using cash in an area without any homeowners association restrictions. You own your house, and you can make any changes you like. Similarly, Any-Prem gives you complete flexibility to make customizations and modifications (although not recommended). Also please be noted that this option can also be mortgaged / converted into an OPEX model if desired.
When it comes to subscription / OPEX / pay-per-use, there are two options again.
- Have your private instance where you will have a great amount of flexibility to make changes, but not complete flexibility. This option can be compared to buying a townhouse. You have a good amount of flexibility to customize, but you cannot make any structural changes. From a financial perspective, you mortgage the home to pay monthly, except for the house will never be yours. This is called S/4HANA Extended Edition (formerly referred to as Private Cloud or Single Tenant Cloud), which gives you the flexibility to customize but doesn’t give you the option to do any code modifications.
- You share an instance with others where you will end up with minimal flexibility to make customizations, although you can configure and make some updates. This option can be compared to renting a place where you are not allowed to make updates, but you can make some changes, especially related to ‘look and feel’. From a financial perspective, you pay rent, i.e, pay-per-use, and will never end up owning the property.
Please note that the Any-Prem version can also be deployed on the cloud and not to be confused with either the Cloud Essentials or Cloud Extended editions.
I have detailed the customization options and recommended approach in my blog that can be accessed at https://blogs.sap.com/2020/06/25/sap-s-4hana-essentials-sap-s-4hana-extended-and-sap-s-4hana-anyprem.-how-to-keep-the-core-clean/.
I will dive into the three options in more detail in my next blog, so watch this space.