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Differences : CR Content, ST-CONT and ST-SER packages

Hello,

I am configuring solution manager 7.2 SP10. There are multiple automatic update methods for various contents

1. Component Repository Content (CR content)

Infrastructure preparation ► Set up Landscape management ► Manage import content ►Automatic Import into SLD or LMDB

2. ST-CONT

Basic Configuration ► Configure manually ► Configuration for Rapid Content Delivery ► Updates Software component ST-CONT

3. ST-SER

Basic Configuration ► Configure manually ► Service Content update configuration ( t code AGS_UPDATE) ► Update ST-SER packages.

I want to understand "what are they" and "why are they required" aspects of these; "how to configure" is mostly available in help text of the Solution manager itself.

Please help me to understand the differences and purpose of these contents.

Thanks

Accepted Solutions (1)

Accepted Solutions (1)

Thomas_Winkler
Active Participant
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Hi Rashmi,

no worries about - I know that many customers will have similar questions, the understandig is in our world much complex than in other IT-worlds (like MSFT, ...).

We need in the solman world, the complete overview of the whole solution - this is/could be a challenge, but is also the only chance to managed ALL too. The integration thinking is the unique option for that.

- I'll answer this below in cursive letters:

Would it be a foolish question if I ask - What will happen if we don't update CR content (= PPMS- s/w catalog) in SLD/LMDB from support portal files? My Solution manager does already have all the s/w catalog for all the components of all the managed systems anyways once synchronized.

==> this is only a snapshot in the timeline. ==> I'm 100% shure in 1 year latest - your system is running out of information, because the future Supportpackages/-stacks will not be covered by your actual solman and maintenance planner task.

Each package has its new PPMS-ID (product number), which is now not present in the actual CR/CIM Model of the SLD.

==> my recommendation is here, to update 2-4 times a year dependening on your planned chances in the system landscape) - see note #669669.

When the solution is stable, no large changes due projects necessary, then its also OK to lower the frequence - otherwise due higher changes - its critical, when the content is outdated.

One additonal tipp: how to reduce the effort:
https://blogs.sap.com/2012/10/08/how-to-reduce-manual-effort-in-cim-model-and-cr-content-update-of-s...

About ST-SER and ST-CONT, could you correct my understanding? At managed system - ST-PI controls the data collection and ST-A/PI contributes the data collection application wise. At Solution manager - ST-SER (monitoring content) retrieves the data controlled by monitoring tool (ST-CONT)

==> as you mentioned in your picture - regarding ST-SER (only SAP Service Delivery, Content & Tools) the update of the service content is on the managing AND managed system. The service delivery is going over the solman itself (here are the Serviceapplications)- BUT the datacollectors reside in the managed backend

==> only when this dataflow is OK then you'll get right data (when on the root of the dataprovision the right format), the actual data will be produced for the service, then the data can be shown in the central reports (Solman) show the processed/aggregated values.

You are able to see this data flow easy in the little example of EWA. The most often issues came from the not updated datacollectors, wrong system settings (Solman & Backend), wrong planning of releases, ... => the flow is not consistant - then the customers claim about.


==> ST-CONT (only Monitoring)

The only important remark is - that all SAP Packages relates to specific SAP Product releases - and the target application (in this case MAI - Monitoring and Alerting Infrastructure) has also deep dependencies and also a own releaseplanning - for details pls. see here: https://wiki.scn.sap.com/wiki/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=399672524

Please keep in mind the dependency Solman Release and Patchlevel (monitoring system) and the MAI Release (tool & content) => and the dependecies to the monitored Backend and level of observation/type (meet the system really all requirements? [(!) Agent, PlugIns, ...]

One additonal tipp here: when the Solman_setup and the managed system setup shows all lights in green - then you have no issue in all the different mentioned packages (!) and all is running in the way like you and SAP will have. And I know also from my projects - this could be also a challenge 🙂


The BI reporting of the solman overtakes from all datasources also datastreams and brings it in the right reports/dashboards - this is on the top of this mentioned SW-packages in all depended applications (monitoring, services, ewa, jobs, ...)


Good luck - Thomas

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Nice explanation .

Thank you very much for your patience and time tommy_sta !

Answers (4)

Answers (4)

Thomas_Winkler
Active Participant

Hi Rashmi,

the different contents supports different applications/topics in the Solman (very principal) - the challenge especially from an integrated plattform like Solman is - there are many dependencies and relations inside of the tools. This makes it sometimes "complex", but overall it is one of the biggest advantages of the ALM toolset - because of the fact, that we can handle only in this way the applicationspecifics (all what SAP sells). No other "3rd-Party around tool" can make this in this deepness!

Regarding your questions:

- PPMS (CR/CIM-Content in the SLD/LMDB) - each SAP SW-product (all what SAP sells) has an internal number (like a catalog), to distinguish and build up the complete SW-Stack (all versions, releases of Supportpackages, all installation dependecies, all calculations and delta information, ...) therefore all characteristics of it, has some impacts on your company release management decisions of the whole SAP Solution, installations, ...

It is crucial to keep your local (used SLD) "SW-catalog" most actual - this picture shows you the update mechanismen. Please keep also in mind, this has also impacts on your SAP license and Support topics.

This leads to the next question:

- ST-SER - is the SAP application specific Services Content. You'll get an overview here: https://support.sap.com/en/offerings-programs/support-services/support-tools.html it is your aim "as admin and/or support contract owner" to get most of the SAP Services offerings - to be save and riskfree in the whole Systemlandscape. Each service is very valueable, because there are many deep analysis and helpful insights about your running applications available. To get this advantages - our responsibility is make your system clear to "Service Delivery Readiness". This is a special SAP tool and SAP content update delivery, to make Selfservices, or SAP DBS delivered Services possible. It is only possible when the SW-requirements where established - here is the next relation to the PPMS.

The last open question is:

- ST-CONT - this relates to the recommended Monitoring Toolset of SAP Solutions: the next 2 pictures should explain the complex background of SAP products.
At first there are many other monitoring flavours available - SAP produces here a lot of further different contents.

Secondly SAP makes it absolutely specific (tailor-made) to the requirements of each application.

Picture 1

Picture 2

Now you can imagine - that this also often changed, because of the very large supported SAP SW
productlist - with all relations and dependecies.
The good message: the most of the updates runs fully automated or in the background - some needs extra attention (like Note #669669).

The important advice: when you want the full lifecycle view - then the complete updates of the Solutionlandscape should be very actual - only then your SAP Team is predictable and proactive.

I hope this makes it clear for you, that we speak about different tools, usages, contents, services, responsiblities, ... and how this has been bundled it together.

BR Thomas

Thomas_Winkler
Active Participant

Hi Rashmi,

the 3 different contents target different scenarios:

regarding 1. - today I have answered this in another blog (CIM/CR_Content)- please see here the details:

https://answers.sap.com/questions/13081712/cim-and-cr-content-in-sap.html?childToView=13080905#comme...

regarding 2. - when you'll use the SAP monitoring tools (MAI, ..) then I'm shure, you will have the latest metrics (ST-CONT_Content) for each new product (or improvements/changes of that - see pls. point 1)

https://wiki.scn.sap.com/wiki/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=399672524

regarding 3. - when the products will be allways renewed, the monitoring contents also improved, then there is a very important feature of Solman and SAP Support organisation - THE SERVICES and the DELIVERY of all SAP CQC, EWA, Servicelevelproducts, ... (ST-SER_Content) has also to be adjustet on this new landscape requirements.

Yes it sounds on the first view complicated - when you see the purpose of it, then it will be clearer. Please consider it as "maintenance work" - each Admin should be aware of that periodic work - to get the most accurate data if the whole installation.

Which periodes are necessary? This depends on the different development groups.
The good thing not all is manually (example RAGS_DSWP_SERV_CONTENT_UPDATE) - but please check it manually for the success of the update.

BR Thomas

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Thank you for such a detailed explanation tommy_sta

Would it be a foolish question if I ask - What will happen if we don't update CR content (= PPMS- s/w catalog) in SLD/LMDB from support portal files? My Solution manager does already have all the s/w catalog for all the components of all the managed systems anyways once synchronized.

About ST-SER and ST-CONT, could you correct my understanding?

At managed system - ST-PI controls the data collection and ST-A/PI contributes the data collection application wise. At Solution manager - ST-SER (monitoring content) retrieves the data controlled by monitoring tool (ST-CONT).

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Thanks a ton tommy_sta

I read the links and notes you suggested. But, honestly I am still not clear with all these terms e.g. monitoring tool vs monitoring content.

I see PPMS as a string of number in stack.xml files extracted from maintenance planner.

Something for each SP of each software component - <caption>SAP_BASIS 740: SP 0020</caption> <name>SAPKB74020</name> <vendor>sap.com</vendor> <ppms-number>73555000101100027248</ppms-number> <sp-level>0020</sp-level>

In my understanding when we try to upgrade SP level, the target and intermediate levels of each software is checked at SAP support by these PPMS and not by names. But, In 1811708, it says Solution Manager comes with pre-loaded PPMS data.

Does this mean Solution manager stores PPMS of target software components of all managed system and this comes with CR content (i.e. Solution manager does not connect SAP support portal to check the PPMS of target softwares immediately when stack is generated)? If so, without CR content updates, I won't be able to generate stack for latest target levels of any connected system. Please help me understand.

Could you explain the difference monitoring tool (ST-CONT) and monitoring content ( ST-SER) ?

Also, ST_CONT is downloaded as zipped file using RCD (but not a software component) vs ST-SER is a software component (in system status - Product version). why so?