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SAP Integration Suite – Take Prepackaged Integration to next level

With new capabilities being added on a regular basis, SAP Integration Suite has evolved significantly over time. Ready-to-deploy prepackaged integration is one of its strong features. In this blog, I’d like to suggest a few product enhancements that could help speed up configuration and improve overall productivity.

If you wish to use one of the prebuilt integration packages, all you must do is copy it to your workspace and then configure the specific I-flow. Looks so simple and straight forward? Yes, it is manageable if you need to do this for 10 or 20 flows. If the number exceeds 50, you start exploring options to automate this.

Take for instance the standard package – SAP Cloud for Customer for Utilities Solution – Integration with SAP S/4HANA. From C4C SOAP to S4H SOAP, the package includes more than 60 prebuilt integration processes. The exact same step and setting described in the screenshot below must be performed 60+ times for all identical integration flows.

Standard%20I-flow%20Configuration

Standard I-flow Configuration

 

Folks with SAP PI/PO background may correlate this to Communication channel, although there is no such artefact in CPI. Externalized Parameters are used as a placeholder in CPI for connectivity-related configuration in configure-only I-flow. The default value is pre-populated in this setup, and the customer-specific Configured Value is updated during configuration.

Externalized%20Parameters

Externalized Parameters

 

Connection template

 

Consider the scenario where, instead of SAP defaulting all parameters, it includes a connection template in the package that allows you to pre-populate some of the customer-specific common parameters like host, port, and authorization information. That is, you begin your I-flow setup with a configuration that has already been filled in. Sounds cool!

Connection%20Template

Connection Template

 

I-flow%20pre-filled%20with%20default%20from%20Connection%20template

I-flow pre-filled with default from Connection template

 

Address Prefix

 

Let’s look at another case where you only have one non-production CPI instance to support integration across two environments at the same time. Here you create another copy of standard package and start with connection template configuration. Everything is okay until you realize that the approach is not helping with unique endpoint as Address in Sender adapter is I-flow specific and is not maintained as part of Sender connection template.

Now we’re back to the situation where we must manually add some prefix such as /dev or /qa in the Address for all the I-flow with C4C SOAP as Sender. Here is another suggestion to simplify such scenarios involving HTTP based Sender adapter. We can have an additional parameter in the Connection template – Address Prefix and use it in the default Address in all the configure-only I-flow in the standard Integration package to generate unique endpoints, as shown in the screenshot below. So, all you have to do now is alter the address prefix once at the package level in the connection template, then deploy the pre-filled I-flows.

 

Address-Prefix

Address-Prefix

Conclusion

 

Please provide your feedback if you appreciate the concept and believe it will make using prebuilt integration easier. Although the approach looks simple in theory, all the other considerations and challenges must be examined in case SAP decides to proceed with the implementation.

5 Comments
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  • Hi Sunil,

    Very informative post.

    This will avoid creating unnecessary Iflow with dev/qa prefix or suffix.

    Regards,

    Pavan

    • Hi Pavan,

      Yes, it would simplify the configuration specially for the customer having only 1 non-prod tenant.

      Regards,

      Sunil Chandra

  • Hi Sunil,

    I guess you get kind of spoiled getting 60 iflows without much effort and only to add a few configurations. 🙂 Just imagine starting from scratch.

     

    We have added different features in the Figaf Tool for it. We have a global replacement of hostnames between systems in the landscape so you just need to define devs4host = qas4host =  prds4host.

    we did also consider adding the option to define prefined values but the naming of the attributes of the standard packaged is not optimal.

    And the transport process also supports virtual landscapes so you can transport to QA and then it would automatically add QA as pre or postfix for different patterns.

     

    Daniel

    • Hi Daniel,

      Thanks for the comment! Agree that pre-built integration makes our life easier, and the proposed enhancement will take this experience even further and would allow us to focus on things that are more productive 🙂

      Cheers,

      Sunil Chandra