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Understanding SAP HANA

Posted on: October 14th, 2017 by Daniella Lundsberg

SAP HANA is an in-memory column-oriented relational database management system that combines database with application processing along with integration services. Available for both on-premise and cloud deployment, SAP HANA makes big data, real-time analytics and aggregation, powerful data processing, data management and data warehousing possible on a single platform. SAP HANA notably out-performs traditional databases, thanks to its ability to keep vast volumes of information in memory, or physically closer to the CPU, and instantly accessible. So you can monitor and analyze incoming data the second it enters the system.

Since the launch of SAP HANA’s flagship product in late 2010, it’s already proven itself for leading organizations from John Deere to eBay and Burberry. Companies are finding that it delivers on its promise to provide a simpler, faster, and more cost-efficient IT architecture capable of presenting business insight in real-time. So much so that customers are putting their entire business suite on HANA and are conducting complex analytical projects with remarkable ease.

SAP HANA employs modern hardware and database systems to combine online transaction with online analytical processing – offered within one single source. As a result, the platform supplies powerful real-time analytics while also simplifying application and database structures. HANA improves reporting and transactional processes, enabling rapid real-time processing of massive amounts of data required to support today’s most innovative Big Data applications.

HANA further eliminates Disk I/O operations along with the creation and storage of indexes and aggregates. By reducing the complexity of coding, administration, and infrastructure, it allows for simpler design with fewer objects and operations. Organizations using SAP HANA are able to shrink their storage footprint, eliminate the need for multiple layers of software and hardware, and improve performance while reducing their power consumption and total cost of ownership. Put simply, SAP HANA simplifies your technology stack.

Companies considering HANA have two avenues for implementation. The first is a Full/Enterprise Use license, with cost based on database or gigabyte size. This is ideal for companies looking into Big Data, agile datamarting, operational reporting, custom application design, side-car accelerators to the SAP Business Suite, and side-car Operational Reporting using customized or pre-delivered HANA live content. Shifting to the HANA database also provides the ability to access new HANA-based applications and tools including Simple Finance and HANA-Live.

SAP HANA Live, just one application included in the SAP Suite, delivers real-time operational reporting based on customizable virtual data models. This real-time reporting is achievable without negatively affecting performance. Dynamic tiering provides a smart and cost-efficient means for data archival and the management of massive amounts of data from multiple sources. SAP HANA’s powerful Big Data and predictive analytics capabilities also give customers the ability to build analytics solutions that provide unprecedented up-to-the-second operational visibility, forecasting, and analysis.

In addition to Full/Enterprise Use license, SAP HANA may be installed under its Run-Time License, with actual cost based on SAP application value. The Run-Time License has no gigabyte restriction. This option is recommended for companies that don’t require Big Data but, instead, simply want to replace and upgrade their existing database to prepare for future growth and to take advantage of its many benefits and innovations. The Run-Time License is also suitable for organizations interested in side-car accelerators to the SAP Business Suite.

 

 

 

 

Should you migrate to SAP HANA?

Posted on: August 18th, 2017 by Daniella Lundsberg

Faster is better. This is especially true when it comes to accessing business data, which can now be made available in real-time thanks to SAP HANA. Beyond speed, SAP HANA wraps data into reports and analytics, delivers it to your desktop, and uses it to provide relevant offers to customers and users. This level of speed and transparency helps companies innovate, mitigate risk, and make all of those critical decisions that drive operations each day.

Real-time data availability is the primary benefit driving growth and demand for SAP HANA, a database and applications platform developed by SAP SE. SAP HANA, a High-Performance Analytic Appliance, is now the fastest-growing technology in SAP history due to its revolutionary in-memory platform. It can be used for any kind of application, capable of processing both structured and unstructured data instantaneously.

SAP HANA is an in-memory column-oriented relational database management system that combines database with application processing along with integration services. Available for both on-premise and cloud deployment, SAP HANA makes big data, real-time analytics and aggregation, powerful data processing, data management and data warehousing possible on a single platform. SAP HANA notably out-performs traditional databases, thanks to its ability to keep vast volumes of information in memory, or physically closer to the CPU, and instantly accessible. So you can monitor and analyze incoming data the second it enters the system.

How fast is fast? While actual speed is dependent on the data model and other factors, SAP HANA is shown to perform between 1,000 to 10,000 times faster than a traditional database platform. This is due to its in-memory design, which overcomes challenges naturally inherent in on-disk systems including bottlenecks between CPU and disk. To drive performance, SAP HANA leverages multi-core processors, low-cost main memory or RAM, and solid state drives.

SAP HANA stores data in columnar structures which enables data compression making entire data retrieval process even faster. When a traditional database system tries to improve I/O performance to these levels, it can only do so by heavy memory consumption and CPU cycles. So users are forced to choose between, for example, a broad and deep analysis or high-speed performance. Traditional databases also use much more memory, caching, and CPU cycles to maintain the cache on top.

But SAP HANA’s in-memory platform eliminates disk I/O, reduces memory consumption, and minimizes data redundancy along with the associated need for more storage space. Superior performance is backed by optimized compression, columnar RDBMS table storage, persistent data and log storage, partitioning, massive parallel processing, and ACID compliance. ACID (Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durability) compliance ensures transaction reliability, while partitioning supports the deployment of massive tables – dividing them into smaller segments that may be placed on multiple machines.

As a result, HANA makes computing faster, easier, and more efficient. It makes broad and deep analyses possible along with real-time availability, high-speed response, and powerful reporting capabilities. Code, application development, and set-up are simplified, with end users able to enjoy a richer and more relevant experience. Finally, SAP HANA streamlines a company’s data footprint making processing and operations more efficient than ever.

Contact American Digital to discuss whether or not SAP HANA is right for your organization.

How BusinessObjects Will Transform SAP

Posted on: July 22nd, 2017 by Daniella Lundsberg

This post is brought to us by Symmetry Corporation.

 

SAP HANA® gets a lot of attention for its blazing speed, but from a business perspective, raw power is never the most important consideration. Even HANA’s advanced analytic and real-time business intelligence are only as valuable as the insights companies can draw from them. And valuable insights require intuitive, mobile apps designed around the needs of the user — not the structure of the backend.

When SAP Fiori was launched, it showed that SAP understood the importance of excellent UX, and the growing importance of mobile devices for business users. Its innovative interface replaces archaic desktop menus with natural workflow, in a product that’s as attractive as it is functional.

Superficially, while SAP’s SAPPHIRE NOW 2016 BusinessObjects announcement may seem like a rebranding, the product will prove every bit as innovative as Fiori. By providing BusinessObjects as a complete business intelligence (BI) suite, SAP has taken another major step toward in helping businesses harness the power of SAP HANA.

The SAP SAPPHIRE NOW 2016 Keynote Address: Revealing the Future
SAP has sometimes been criticized for not being clear enough about its product offerings. As Gartner Research VP Cindi Howson put it, “BI and analytics is all I do, and yet, even for me, it’s a tough road map to keep track of.” At SAPPHIRE NOW, SAP CEO Bill McDermott directly addressed this criticism, pledging to make SAP more responsive to customers, with clearer product roadmaps and migration guidelines. But in that same speech, he emphasized the central role of design thinking that puts the end user experience above everything

“We feel strongly that design thinking and innovation is the way forward. So we truly have to understand that with every encounter with our customers means we have to understand their customers. We have to make the world run better, we have to improve people’s lives one customer at a time and that’s the commitment I give to you today.”

Offering analytics in a single package will certainly help SAP provide clearer roadmaps, and alleviate customer frustration. But how does SAP BusinessObjects help the end user?

Inside SAP BusinessObjects
SAP has combined all of its analytics into one tool in two main versions: BusinessObjects Cloud (formerly SAP Cloud for Analytics), and the on-premise version — BusinessObjects Enterprise. The enterprise version is offered in standard, pro and premium configurations, giving businesses the ability to select what features they need.

SAP BusinessObjects Cloud is a complete BI package, addressing everything from data curation through planning. For the first time, customers can get all their enterprise analytics in a single package — including modeling, visualization and mobile analytics.

Their mobile offerings are where things get innovative. SAP has included recently-acquired Roambi, a mobile-first app featuring beautiful visualizations, rendered on the fly to help users quickly draw the right conclusions from complex datasets.

Likewise, end users are about to get a lot more in light of another SAP SAPPHIRE NOW announcement: the partnership with Apple. By working together to offer an SDK, training and an iOS version of Fiori, the companies will accelerate the development of iOS Apps with SAP backend, leading to better mobile analytics.

SAP SAPPHIRE NOW 2016 is the start of a new age of end-user experience.
Often, learning how to make the most of a new invention is an even bigger challenge than inventing it. Now it’s up to designers and developers — supported by the cloud SAP hosting professionals who make everything work together on the backend — to show the world just how good SAP HANA can be.

 

The Anatomy of a Big Data Solution for Enterprise

Posted on: July 13th, 2015 by Daniella Lundsberg

The entire point of Big Data is to unlock the value that will drive better decision-making, higher operational efficiencies, customer loyalty, behavioral insight, and a host of other business outcomes that can positively impact your organization’s bottom line. Getting there requires an infrastructure that can collect, store, access, analyze and manage all the various forms of data inside your servers, or in the cloud, and allow you to convert it into actionable intelligence. And, by the way, it needs to integrate into your existing environment.

Hardware, Software, Platforms

IT infrastructure has evolved over decades from mainframes that handled yesteryear’s version of high-volume transactions, to online transactional processing (OLTP) databases –that became widely accessible in the form of CRM, ERP and e-commerce systems, to data warehouses that incorporated all of this transactional data with software for analytical insight – the rise of Business Intelligence (BI). Today, the evolution continues with HP ConvergedSystems bringing together compute, storage and networking, (including HP ConvergedSystem for Big Data optimized for SAP HANA), and HP Vertica Big Data Analytics Platform.

HP Vertica is a standards-based relational database that supports SQL, JDBC/ODBC and tightly integrates all popular BI and visualization tools. It can handle SQL and Big Data analytic workloads at 30 percent of the cost of traditional data warehouse solutions. It runs queries 50-1,000x faster, boasts petabyte-scale storage up to 30x more data per server, and offers the openness and simplicity to use any BI/ETL tools and Hadoop. Organizations can use HP Vertica to manage and analyze massive volumes of data quickly and reliably without the limits or compromises of traditional enterprise data warehouses.

Healthcare industry innovators, business collaboration platform providers, multimedia entertainment companies, and mobile game developers are among the legions of HP Vertica believers. (See for yourself.)

How About Hadoop?

The HP Vertica Analytics Platform and Hadoop are highly complementary systems for Big Data analytics. While HP Vertica is ideal for interactive, blazing-fast analytics, Hadoop is well suited for batch-oriented data processing and low-cost data storage. When used together organizations benefit from the synergies of the most powerful set of data analytics capabilities, extracting significantly higher levels of value from massive amounts of structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data.

Avoid Frankenstein’s Monster

Every organization’s technology environment and business requirements are unique, giving rise to the need for tailored solutions. Simply bolting parts onto your existing environment could cause the villagers to revolt. Before you embark on your Big Data quest, consult with a partner like American Digital to understand what embodies a successful enterprise implementation.

 

Join us in Chicago on July 23 at our Big Data Symposium. Meet tech execs from HP, SAP, Hortonworks, and Big Data guru & Fortune 50 consultant, Chris Surdak. Register here.

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