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BW implementation migration to S4HANA

Hello all,

We are currently sizing an SAP migration project from classic ERP 6.0 to S/4HANA 1610 infrastructure.
The current SAP productive installation consists of two servers; an SAP ERP OLTP system (version 6.0 EHP7) and an SAP BW OLAP system (version 740 SP08), both on conventional MSSQL databases.

We plan to switch from the current two-server model to a single server with possibly two clients.
There is enough information on SAP marketplace regarding the ERP part of the migration but it is not clear what options are available for the existing implementation on the BW system. According to SAP notes, BI Content (BI_CONT and BI_CONT_XT), even though technically installable, is not supported on any S/4HANA edition. In our understanding this means that standard SAP BW extractors will not function anymore on an S/4HANA instance.

Currently we have reports in BW from FI/CO, and logistics (MM). All the ETL and warehousing procedures are based on standard BI Content with little custom implementation (few custom extractors and user exits). Also, SAP BW system supports an extensive implementation of Planning and Consolidation (BPC) modules.

Our main question is how this implementation would be migrated to the planned S/4HANA instance if BI content is no longer supported and if you have any experience on such a migration. We would appreciate if you had any solid example per extraction area (Logistics, FI etc).

Another question is what SAP has as a substitute of SAP BI Content for S4HANA. In other words, we wonder if SAP has some predefined HANA content (CDS views for example) which would allow the (virtual or persistent) access to financial and logistics information for reporting purposes.

We should decide whether the current implementation on BW can be migrated to the new systems or this could cause certain limitations in the new system or to size a new reporting solution based on the new analytic functionalities of S4HANA technology.

Thank you in advance for your support,
Dimitris

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2 Answers

  • Apr 18, 2017 at 10:51 PM

    Hi Dimitrios,

    I am not an SAP employee, but I believe that SAP is actively pursuing a means to support those customers who wish to have a separate BW system from their SAP system. The basic methodology would to use Smart Data Access or SLT replicator and create a Composite InfoProvider. This works fine for extractors based on tables and views, but doesn't work so well for function module based extractors. S4HANA is a "stripped" system. The underlying tables may not exist. Unfortunately, replicating existing functionality is not a revenue generator for SAP.

    The assumption may be that "operational" reporting will suffice for greenfield S4HANA.

    For CRM on HANA on the other hand. , SAP provides BI Content on the embedded BW system - views, Advanced DSOs, and Composite InfoProvider , but no extractor yet (that I know of).

    If the BI Content or custom extractors are providing critical business value, I would recommend migrating to ECC on HANA and BW on HANA.

    S4HANA makes more sense in a "greenfield" environment for a new SAP user.

    My guess is that SAP will provide a defined path for customers desiring an "out of the box" solution for separate ECC and BW systems, but it's not there quite yet.

    If you have to migrate to S4HANA, be prepared to have to recreate extractors.

    Let me know what you think.

    John Hawk

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  • Jul 10, 2017 at 12:13 PM

    Hello Dimitris,

    I do have the same questions. Did you find the answers for the same?

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