The new word in the street is SAP S/4 HANA. In this post we will learn :-
What is S/4 Hana in nutshell
What are the S/4 Hana installable components
In What way and shape SAP ECC differs from SAP S/4 Hana
Lastly , we will take a sneak peek in S/4 Hana conversion process
So Lets get started ......
SAP S/4 Hana is SAP suit for SAP HANA DB . So how can we install SAP S/4 HANA? Well…. You cannot install SAP S/4 HANA; it is the product name only. So what you can install? You can install one of the SAP systems such as SAP BW or SAP HANA server.
So, in short SAP S/4 Hana server is the name of SAP system whereas SAP S/4 Hana is the name of the suit.
The SAP Business Suite consists of the solutions SAP ERP, SAP CRM, SAP SCM , SAP SRM, and SAP PLM. SAP ERP includes SAP ECC (ERP Central Component), SAP XSS (Employee/Manager Self Services), SAP XECO (Accelerated Ecommerce), SAP BW (Business Warehouse), SAP Enterprise Portal, SAP PI (Process Integration), and many more. These are installable and upgradeable units. You cannot update or upgrade (to) SAP ERP in general, but you can upgrade (to) SAP ECC (former R/3) or SAP BW and so on.
Now let’s tackle another brain teaser; in what way ECC on Hana is different than SAP S/4 HANA? SAP ECC is not designed to take advantage of the SAP HANA DB. Yes, you can use an SAP HANA DB with an SAP ECC system. But to gain the advantage from the column store, the database procedures, the simplified data model, and so on, you have to use SAP S/4HANA Server, instead.
Another difference between ECC and S/4 Hana server is ECC can run over any sap supported DB such as SAP ASE , MaxDB, Oracle DB , DB2, MSS as well as HANA DB . However SAP Hana server can run only on HANA DB.
Next difference what is worth highlighting is; ECC is based on SAP Netweaver technology whereas SAP HANA server is based on ABAP Foundation so please don’t call S/4 Hana server instances Netweaver instances.
Another important thing here is to understand the product availability matrix in terms of SAP ECC and SAP S/4 Hana server. Below figure shows the releases of software component SAP_BASIS over time which clarifies where ECC stops and SAP S/4 HANA server takes over.
Yet another difference between ECC and SAP S/4 Hana server is SAP strategy for support and maintenance. SAP will provide support for ECC ABAP EHP 0-5 until 2027, extended support for additional 3 yrs will be provided only for latest 3 EHPs ( 6, 7,8) until 2030. After 2030 no support will be provided for SAP ERP (NetWeaver based systems) and we will walk into S/4 Hana server for life until next big innovation strikes in SAP Labs. Below shown figure describes this support strategy in detail.
This support strategy is creating a lot of buzz for ECC migration to SAP S/4 Hana server ,fashionably termed as SAP S/4 Hana conversion. So what is SAP S/4 Hana conversion actually? Well ….From a technical point of view, a conversion to SAP S/4HANA Server works like an SAP upgrade. From a development or project point of view, however, several additional steps are required.
SAP provides a process for the conversion to SAP S/4HANA server. The following figure gives a sneak peek into overall conversion process ,tools and the activities involved. SAP recommends that you carry out activities in the given fashion only to reduce the risk and maximize the conversion success.
With this information i would like to conclude this blog , hope you got valuable information here. Pls share your specific insight and know-how on the topic by providing your feedback in comments section also feel free to revert back for any question and clarifications required in this regard .
Reference 1 :- Conversion Guide for SAP HANA 2020
Reference 2 :- SAP S/4 Hana Upgrade and Conversion ADM328