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Former Member

XI vs EAI and ETL

Hi all,

Is there someone who explain the pros and cons of XI over EAI and ETL tools? Thanks in advance.

BG

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  • author's profile photo Former Member
    Former Member
    Posted on Nov 12, 2003 at 07:27 PM

    BG,

    To start with, XI is an EAI toolset, and it is not (at least with 2.0 and presumably 3.0) an ETL tool.

    So, for comparison purposes, I would start with a general comparison of EAI vs. ETL tools and decide which is the best solution for your environment. In my experience, both tools are valuable in their respective areas, and both can be misused to try to do something that is better accomplished by the other. For example, using an EAI tool that includes a JDBC connector to extract data from a database, map it, and load it to a data warehouse. While this can work, ETL tools are generally better suited for this type of work. Another example (and, in my opinion, a bad solution) is integrating transactional applications by using an ETL tool to synchonize databases.

    In that light, the best comparison is to look at XI with other EAI tools. Since we have implemented XI 2.0 and are moving towards 3.0, we obviously feel that XI compares very favorably with other EAI solutions. In particular, we saw a definite advantage in the areas of stability and lifecycle management, which stem from the fact that XI is based on a mature application server platform (WAS).

    Regards,

    Chris

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  • author's profile photo Former Member
    Former Member
    Posted on Sep 27, 2006 at 10:25 AM

    BG, i must agree with Chris on this one. We are currently working through the same process with one of our clients where their environment and strategy wants to dictate that XI needs to be used for ETL processes.

    Although XI is powerful enough to manage the process at the cost of maintenance, it is never advised according to SAP to use the tool for anything other than EAI especially when looking at from a warehousing perspective with for instance SAP BW.

    With BW7.0 on the Netweaver 2004s platform a typical connector that XI uses like JDBC is supplied with the newer version thus to connect to these databases that require a JDBC connector it would be more advised to use the ETL tool.

    However i think that a good indication of which tool to use might be by the following criteria:

    - What will be the loads

    - What is the frequency of these loads

    - What is the cost implications seeing that XI is billed per usage.

    - What will be the maintenance efforts of any of the connectors to the source systems should the source systems change.

    These are but a few guidelines that we use when deciding between EAI and ETL. It is better to use the connectors for what they are designed in principle.

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