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What’s New – SAP HANA Cloud Q2 2020

With this blog post series we provide an update with the latest information about SAP HANA Cloud on the SAP Cloud Platform.

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SAP HANA Cloud Service

End of June, SAP HANA Cloud Quarterly Release Cycle (QRC) 02 2020 was released. In this blog post you will find most of the highlights for the service, the database, and the tools with references to the documentation.

For the blog post from product management, see

The following updates are available for the SAP HANA Cloud service:

  • Update notifications
  • Support for AFL and scriptserver,
  • Support for the command line interface (cf CLI)
  • Share database across Cloud Foundry orgs and spaces
  • Whitelisting self-service

Update Available

When a new version of the SAP HANA Cloud is released the database instance card on the SAP Cloud Platform cockpit will display an Update Available link. Every version can be used up to six months after which it will be automatically upgraded.

Machine Learning, AFL, and Script Server

You can dramatically increase performance by executing complex computations in the database instead of at the application server level. SAP HANA provides several techniques to move application logic into the database, and one of the most important is to use application functions. Application functions are database procedures written in C++ and called from outside to perform data-intensive and complex operations. These application functions are bundled in application function libraries (AFL) of which the Predictive Analytics Library (PAL) and the Automated Predictive Library (APL) are common examples.

AFLs are executed in the separate memory space of the script server.

On the SAP HANA platform we enable the script server with an ALTER DATABASE statement executed from the system database but for SAP HANA Cloud we need to create a service ticket.

Note that a minimum of three vCPUs is required.

As documented:

For some hands-on tutorials using the PAL and APL with SAP HANA Cloud, see

cf CLI

You can use the Cloud Foundry command line interface (cf CLI) to manage SAP HANA Cloud instances.

This not only enables you to create (and delete) service instances but also to start and stop an instance.

cf update-service my_hana_db -c '{"data": {"serviceStopped":true}}'

You can download the cf CLI from GitHub:

For the documentation, see

Share Database

You can now share the SAP HANA Cloud database instance with other Cloud Foundry organizations and spaces. It will not be listed in the SAP HANA Cloud section of the SAP Cloud Platform Cockpit but you can use it to bind HDI containers, for example.

As documented:

To see this demonstrated or try it out yourself, see

Whitelisting

You can edit whitelisted connections on the instance card. A service request is no longer necessary.

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SAP HANA Cloud Database

Security

The database “super” user for SAP HANA Cloud is not SYSTEM but DBADMIN. This database administration account has the same system privileges as SYSTEM expect for one: USER ADMIN.

The SYSTEM user, just like the system database associated with our tenant database, is reserved for use by SAP.

DBADMIN is the user group administrator of the DEFAULT user group and can perform most of the user administration tasks like creating users, assigning roles, etc.

As DBADMIN lacks the USER ADMIN privilege some user administration SQL commands have been replaced by stored procedures.

New in this release are the stored procedures: alter_pse_provider and alter_pse_certificate.

As documented:

SQL

The system privilege CREATE USERGROUP has been added and we can now use DBADMIN to manage usergroups with the CREATE|ALTER|DROP USERGROUP statement (or the corresponding  dialog in the SAP HANA cockpit).

When creating a user the SET USERGROUP clause is now optional when the user group operator (e.g. DBADMIN) has the privilege to create users only on a single usergroup (e.g. DEFAULT).

As documented:

Table Management

We can now use the IMPORT and EXPORT statements

There is also support to import and export data from/to Amazon S3 and Azure Storage.

Machine Learning (Advanced Analytics)

As mentioned above under SAP HANA Cloud service, the script server service is now supported and this (re-)introduces the Predictive Analysis Library (PAL) and Automated Predictive Library (APL).

As documented:

For some hands-on tutorials using the PAL and APL with SAP HANA Cloud, see

Graph

A new function (VERTEX_EXITS), a new parameter (<edge_direction> for SHORTEST PATH), but above all significant improvements for path finding algorithms and an update to reference guide with new demo data.

As documented:

For more information about creating Graphs with SAP HANA Cloud, see

Search

For the specialist: the AUTH operator supports the definition of privileges when accessing a search view and support for fuzzy search modes identifier and alphanum_identifier.

Spatial

Methods

Five new methods have been added to give you a little more choice:

  • ST_GeoHash, ST_GeomFromGeoHash, ST_PointFromGeoHash
  • ST_VoronoiCell
  • CT_CulsterCell (K-Means clustering)

Reference System

Spatial reference system WGS 84 / Pseudo-Mercator (SRS-ID 3857) is included with SQL support to create spatial reference system (CREATE PREDEFINED SPATIAL REFERENCE SYSTEMS) and a systems view (ST_SPATIAL REFERENCE_SYSTEMS).

Spatial is also added to M_FEATURES as are the session variables to M_SESSION_CONTEXT and the unit of measures to ST_UNIT_OF_MEASURE.

For the spatial columns, definitions for the attributes Column Internal Layout (PLAIN, HILBERT CURVE) and Column Spatial Index Preference (DEFAULT, RDICT, RTREE) have been added.

Spatial data types can be now converted using an explicit data type conversion function: TO_BLOB, TO_CHAR, etc.

As documented:

See also:

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SAP HANA Cockpit and Database Explorer

Buffer Cache Size Editor for Native Storage Extension

The Buffer Cache Monitor and Memory Paging Monitor graphically display current configuration with editors to configure the buffer cache and the load unit for the table (default, table, column). Previously only the SQL interface could be used.

Navigation

From the header of each app (view) you can navigate to related app and now also Search for Applications. This avoids frequent visits to the Database Overview app.

The trace file view now displays file name, change, and size information.

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SAP HANA Cloud Data Lake

SQL Reference

You can query the size of a data table or index with the system procedures sp_iqtablesize and sp_indexsize.

As documented:

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SAP HANA Cloud

Free Trial

Probably not exactly news for most of the readers as we covered this topic in some detail in our getting started blog.

The YouTube video tutorial series has grown to 33 videos by now and well over 10K views. Thanks for watching!

 

For the excellent learning track from the SAP HANA Cloud Product Marketing team, visit

You can sign up for the trial here:

The trial period is valid for 30 days but you have the option to extend your trial for an additional 30 days twice (90 day maximum).

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Learn More

Discovery Center

The SAP HANA Cloud service references the service as listed on the SAP Cloud Platform. See the entry on the Discover Center for a general description of the features and service plans with pricing.

Road Map Explorer and Documentation

For the complete list and the fine print, see the What’s New Guide and the SAP Road Map Explorer with filter on Q2 2020. For information about future development, filter on Q3 or later.

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Share and Connect

Questions? Post as comment.

Useful? Give a like and share on social media. Thanks!

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For the author page of SAP Press, visit

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