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A very interesting article was bought to my attention about two weeks ago regarding the installation of SAP HANA Platform Edition 1.0 SP05 on a VMware virtual machine (most likely VMware player).  Thus being a SAP HANA enthusiast I decided to undertake the same process using Oracle VirtualBox v4.2.12.  I had been a big fan of VMware player for a long time, but about 2 years ago I switched to VirtualBox (reasons that I won't get into right now).

So, after finally getting my purchase order approved by my wife, I upgraded my PC to 32GB of RAM and installed SAP HANA PE1.0 SP05 into VirtualBox running SAP SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.2.

The installation is relatively straight forward with a couple of minor VirtualBox issues.  The full instructions can be found here thanks to W. Goslinga :

The key quirks with VirtualBox were:

  1. You need to enable the CMPXCHG16B instruction after you have created the guest in VirtualBox.  Without the CMPXCHG16B instruction enabled the HANA installation will fail.
  2. VirtualBox with SUSE 11.2 running on my Intel i7 reported the number of CPU sockets as 0.  Thus the HANA hardware check would fail with a divide by 0 error and terminate the installation regardless of the IDSPISPOPD environment variable.  I manually updated the shell script and forced the number of sockets to 1.
  3. One last issue, I had the HANA media sitting on a different VM and had NFS mounted the filesystem to my HANA host.  I had a number of packages that failed to "untar" during the installation until I mounted the NFS share as a "rw,hard,intr" mount.  Obviously the NFS soft mount wasn't playing nice over my internal network.

Technical bits:

1.  cd <virtualbox install dir>; VBoxManage setextradata [vmname]|global VBoxInternal/CPUM/CMPXCHG16B 1

2.  vi <path to HANA media>/DATA_UNITS/HDB_SERVER_LINUX_X86_64/server/

  • comment out the line > self.HWInfo['CPU Sockets']=len(lines)-1
  • insert line > self.HWInfo['CPU Sockets']=1               (or set the value to the actual number of sockets you have)

3.  If using an NFS mount ensure its set to a "hard" mount eg: vi /etc/fstab

<nfshost>:/software/softwarenfsrw,hard,intr 0 0

Below is a screen shot of SAP HANA Studio directly after I finished the installation of HANA.

I plan to post a YouTube video of the installation process shortly.  The session will cover the full life cycle from VirtualBox guest creation including network config, through to the completion of the HANA installation.  We'll also install SAP HANA Studio on the physical PC and connect to the HANA backend.  Stay tuned.

Youtube videos now available!

Part 1 - SUSE installation -

Part 2 - HANA installation -

Part 3 - NW 7.4 on HANA installation - coming soon!

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