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SAP HANA and In-Memory Computing

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SAP runs simple.

And SAP HANA also runs simple.

 

Down to the very internal coding this mantra has been followed.

And not just simple, but actually easy and here's the proof - right out of the SAP HANA JoinEngine

27-05-2015 14-57-58.png

(the picture above is a PlanViz - a performance analysis tool -  output of a query execution in SAP HANA)

 

As you see, at SAP we follow the run simple err easy way at every possible level.

 

There you go - now you know!

 

Cheers,

Lars


Memory is the process in which information is encoded, stored, and retrieved. In general memory both biological and physical is important in life and we generally have a tendency to store every event in life physically, even duplicate or multiplicate data if it is crucial. In Business apart from the daily transactional data, companies want to store as much details of customers as possible and use the data to know the customers and their behaviours, to find the patterns that might improve their business. Now with devices and apps that track each and every movement of anything, the demand for data storage is definitely on rise.

bigdata-1

When we go back to the history of data and how it stored, we realise that it is all about decreasing the size of data, increasing the capacity and performance simultaneously. The history goes back to 1837 when Charles Babbage first purposed the Analytical Engine, which was the first computer to use punch cards as memory. In 1930s Gustav Tauschek developed drum memory and the data was stored in magnetic tapes and magnetic drums. Then cathode ray tubes and selectron tubes evolved in 1940s followed by floppy disks in 1970s. In 1970 Intel released its first commercially available DRAM (Dynamic random-access memory), capable of storing 1024 bytes or 1KB of memory. In 1990s CD disks and DVDs were invented and in early 2000 micro drives like USB flash drive and SD card came into existence.

Hard-Drive        9811-evolution-of-memory-storage

Now we have DDR SDRAM series devices, Solid State Devices and Hybrid memory devices that enable more storage in a given space and faster processing of data in a given time.  Also the data storage has moved from on-premises to cloud storage and memory storage is provided as a service.  All of these different storage devices helped businesses and people in general to manage their daily workloads and data.

 

 

As the demand for data storage performance capacity expands every day, the wave of new applications and data flowing from systems of engagement create a data management challenge. Therefore, transforming a data centre can totally transform a business, and storage is a key to accelerating the whole process, including database and its analytics, business applications and mix workloads. The improvement is all based on the idea of storing more data in the smallest size with the highest performance possible. Even the advent of in-memory technology like SAP HANA could be related to the evolution of fast performing storage devices. SAP HANA is an in-memory, relational database management system designed to handle both high transactions and complex queries on the same platform. It was developed by SAP team  in collaboration with Hasso Plattner Institute and Stanford University

 

 

There are many big names in the market competing to bring new products to improve data storage. EMC promising to create true agility for businesses workload and business process overall by providing their new product called XtremIO. Companies are able to react and respond successfully to the business processes workloads in the way that used to be impossible. XtremIO is totally purpose-built, scale out, all-flash array powered by Intel processors. Ori Bauer, Director, WW Development and IBM Systems Israel Development Centre, argue that they have the best solution for the increasing demand for the smaller size and faster performance of data storage and this is through their latest product of Data compression for the business demand on how to deal with their data, and this is by providing IBM Real-Time Compression, which compress data in-line and can store up to five times more data in the same physical space, This technology can be used for Enterprise level and cloud workload. In addition, Violin Memory changed the game of data storage by inventing new way to store data via violin flash storage platform; enterprises can run their primary storage and entire Business in a Flash. This is developed from a vertically integrated design of software, firmware, and hardware enable the transition of primary storage from legacy solutions to all-flash.

 

 

Lets consider a business case where flash memory could improve the testing process in a company. SAP Innovation discovery has about 300 applications (do not require additional licenses) that could be implemented in a company. Testing these innovative applications would be a tedious and time-consuming process for any company. The process could be made easier by using the Flash memory and its fast processing capacity. Flash memory capability could be used to copy production data into multiple testing platforms in parallel and in less time. This enables parallel automation testing of innovative applications on various testing platforms. Hence reducing the test turnaround time of implementation of these applications. Multiple test environments would even enable the faster implementation of new software patches in a company.

sap innov

 

In future the computer memory may reside in holographic technology. Holographic data storage is latest technology in the area of high-capacity data storage, which is  currently dominated by optical and magnetic storage devices. These storage devices rely on individual bits being stored as distinct magnetic or optical changes on the surface of the recording medium. Holographic data storage is capable of recording multiple images in the same area utilizing light at different angles and records information throughout the volume of the medium. In addition optical and magnetic data storage records information in a linear fashion a bit at a time, whereas holographic storage is capable of recording and reading millions of bits in parallel, enabling data transfer rates greater than traditional optical storage. There are still concerns about its storage capacity, durability and sensitivity.

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Holographic data storage might be the next big thing. With more research and technological advancement this data storage might replace the traditional optical and magnetic storage devices and may be the future in-memory technology might reside on holographic memory devices. Finally, we would like to Thank our BCO6181 Lecturer - Tony De Thomasis who shared his valuable knowledge throughout the semester at Victoria University and provided his innovative thoughts and inputs for this blog.

 

Also a special mention about the guest speakers for the BCO6181 class - Alfonzo Venturi, Judy Cole and Leanne O'Connor, and SAP Mentors - Matthias Steiner, Graham Robinson and Paul Hawking. Thanks for spending your valuable time with us and sharing your SAP knowledge and experiences.

 

Thanks visitors for your time and reading through our blog. Please post your comments

 

-Krishna Mattaparti
Araz Albeg
Vamsi Krishna Bathula
Radhika Tammireddy
Khalid Jameel
Ravi Kumar

Introduction

 

At the SAP HANA Academy we are currently updating our tutorial videos on the topic of  SAP HANA administration for the latest support package stack SPS 09.


You can find the full playlist here: SAP HANA Administration - SPS 09 - YouTube

 

For those interested on getting certified on SAP HANA administration, see SCN blog: SAP Certified Technology Associate: SAP HANA - by the SAP HANA Academy.


Overview

The first video provides a brief overview of the SAP HANA architecture: connections (HTTP, SQL, MDX), client tools (HANA studio and web-based), and HANA system components (index server, name server, etc.).

 

 

Multitenant Database Containers - Overview

The next video provides an overview of SAP HANA multitenant database containers (MDC).

 

 

Administration Tools - Overview

The next video provides an overview of the SAP HANA administration tools SAP HANA studio, SAP HANA cockpit, SAP HANA XS Administration, and HDBLCM for platform and application lifecycle management.

 

 

SAP HANA Studio - Overview

The next video gives an overview of the SAP HANA studio Administration perspective.

 

 

SAP HANA Cockpit

The next video gives an overview of the SAP HANA cockpit introduced with SAP HANA SPS 09.

 

 

Monitoring - Embedded Statistics Server

The next video demonstrates how to migrate to the embedded statistics server. This is required to use the new monitoring apps used by SAP HANA cockpit.

 

In this video, SAP Note 1917938 - Migration of the statistics server and SAP Note 2092033 - Embedded Statistics Service Migration Guide are referenced; the Migration Guide provides additional and useful information on how to perform this task on production systems.

 

 

SAP DB Control Center - Installation

The next video demonstrates how to install and configure SAP DB Control Center for SAP HANA.

 

In case things do not work as advertised, you might find this blog useful: Troubleshooting SAP DB Control Center

 

 

SAP HANA Studio - Create Connections

The next video demonstrates how to create SAP HANA connections in SAP HANA studio.

 

 

SAP HANA Studio - Manage Connections

The next video demonstrates how to manage SAP HANA connections in SAP HANA studio.

 

 

Creating Multitenant Connections

The next video demonstrates how to create connections for multitenant database containers (MDC).

 

 

Starting and Stopping SAP HANA

The next video demonstrates how to stop and start SAP HANA using SAP HANA studio and the command line.

 

 

Managing Licenses

The next video demonstrates how to manage SAP HANA Licenses.

 

 

Configuring System Properties (INI files)

The next video demonstrates how to configure SAP HANA system properties (INI files).

 

In this video, SAP Note 2036111 - Configuration parameters for the SAP HANA systemis referenced.

This note contains as an attachment and excellent document (PDF) about the most frequently used parameters.

 

 

 

More Information

SAP HANA Academy Playlists (YouTube)

Backup and Recovery - YouTube

SAP HANA System Replication - YouTube

Security - What's New SPS 09 - YouTube

SAP HANA Installation - SPS 09 - YouTube

 

Product documentation

SAP HANA Administration Guide

 

SCN Blogs

SAP HANA System Replication videos now available on the SAP HANA Academy

Troubleshooting SAP DB Control Center

Book Announcement: SAP HANA Administration

SAP Certified Technology Associate: SAP HANA - by the SAP HANA Academy.

SAP HANA Education - Course & Certification Program 2015

 

SAP Notes

SAP Note 2036111 - Configuration parameters for the SAP HANA system

SAP Note 1917938 - Migration of the statistics server

SAP Note 2092033 - Embedded Statistics Service Migration Guide

 

Thank you for watching

You can view more free online videos and hands-on use cases to help you answer the What, How and Why questions about SAP HANA and the SAP HANA Cloud Platform on the SAP HANA Academy at youtube.com/saphanaacademy, follow us on Twitter @saphanaacademy., or connect with us on LinkedIn.

Tutorial video

 

For those interested in SAP HANA system administration and changing system properties, we have updated our tutorial video on this topic for SPS 09 in the SAP HANA Academy, playlist System Administration. In this video, we explain how you can configure the INI files to set and unset SAP HANA system parameters using the SAP HANA studio administration perspective or the SQL console.

 

As documented, SAP does not recommended changing the default values of parameters unless stated in the documentation or instructed by SAP Support. For more information about frequently used parameters, see SAP Note 2036111. Particularly interesting is the attachment to the note, an excellent resource to the Frequently Used Configuration Parameters in SAP HANA.

 

 

More Information

Product documentation

Configuring SAP HANA System Properties (INI Files) is documented in the SAP HANA Administration Guide:  Chapter 2, System Administration.

The SQL syntax for changing system parameters is documented in the SAP HANA SQL and System Views Reference: ALTER SYSTEM ALTER CONFIGURATION.

 

SAP Notes

2036111 - Configuration parameters for the SAP HANA system

 

Thank you for watching

You can view more free online videos and hands-on use cases to help you answer the What, How and Why questions about SAP HANA and the SAP HANA Cloud Platform on the SAP HANA Academy at youtube.com/saphanaacademy, follow us on Twitter @saphanaacademy., or connect with us on LinkedIn.

Tutorial video

 

For those interested how you can install, delete, or get information about the SAP HANA license key using the SAP HANA studio or the command line tool 'hdbsql', we have updated our license management video in the SAP HANA Academy, playlist System Administration.

 

License management is not exactly rocket science but there are some restrictions you need to be aware of as SAP HANA administrator.

 

 

 

More Information

Product documentation

How to manage SAP HANA licenses is documented in the SAP HANA Administration Guide (Chapter 2, System Administration).

 

SCN Blogs

HANA Licensing (SAP Business One)

 

SAP Notes

1738390 - How to update SAP HANA Linux server hardware key

1739427 - How to request and install the SAP HANA license key (SAP Business One)

 

Thank you for watching

You can view more free online videos and hands-on use cases to help you answer the What, How and Why questions about SAP HANA and the SAP HANA Cloud Platform on the SAP HANA Academy at youtube.com/saphanaacademy, follow us on Twitter @saphanaacademy., or connect with us on LinkedIn.

Jamie Oswald, Data Analytics Lead at Mercy Health, shares their BI on HANA use case to improve operating room care and reduce $2 million of costs in the first few months.

 

 

HE17.jpg

 

We hope you enjoy hearing Mercy Health’s  first-hand experience with mission-critical SAP HANA.  Please let us know your feedback in the comments below.

To get more real-world customer HANA stories, subscribe to our iTunes or SoundCloud feed for weekly podcasts that will cover multiple in-production customer use case scenarios for SAP HANA.

Also, if you’ve got a killer SAP HANA scenario and would like to share it on the HANA Effect podcast, please let us know.

 

Transcript:

Sponsored by:

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Do you, and your business users get frustrated with the immense time and effort it takes to add a new functionality to your on-premise SAP ERP system? If so, then this quick overview video will enlighten you on how you can quickly make your business end-users ecstatic while simultaneously putting your SAP Security administrators at ease, by using the SAP HANA Cloud Platform to decouple new application development from your on-premise SAP ERP system.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.08.32 PM.png

In the video linked above, the Chancellor of the SAP HANA Academy, Joe King:


1) Describes what business users want

2) Details how the SAP HANA Academy created a solution that addresses those business users' wants

3) Shows a live demo of the solution

4) Informs how you can get this powerful demo

5) Announces an upcoming SAP HANA Academy course that enables our customers and Partners to modify the demoed ERP Agile Solution with HCP to elate their end users

 

(0:45 – 1:55) 1) What Business Users Want

 

We are aware that many savvy business users are telling their SAP IT administrators that they could make a much better business decision if they could only combine some of their own SAP ERP business data with an external source of big data. For example they could track a new product's release by combining social media data with their own ERP product data.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.11.25 PM.png

However, today what happens when they have this discussion with their SAP IT administrator? Their SAP IT administrator empathically say NO! Or at the very least says it will take a long time. And up until now that was the correct answer because SAP ERP software is mission critical for every company running it. So elaborate firewalls and change management procedure have been built to protect that infrastructure. Therefore any new development, application, or user interface takes a long, long time to implement.

 

(1:55 – 6:20) 2) How to Build an ERP Agile Solution

 

Recently the SAP HANA Academy solved this impasse by proving how quickly ERP data can be securely combined with external data to deliver valuable business insights. All of the new functions in a SAP HANA Academy ERP Agile Solution are built in the SAP HANA Cloud Platform. Your SAP IT administrator will be very happy due to the fact that the solution boils down to one SAP system in the cloud taking to another on-premise SAP system using SAP security.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.13.53 PM.png

SAP HANA Cloud Integrations for Data Services securely integrates HCP to your on-premise system. Initially setting up this connection between HCP and the SAP ERP system takes less than half a day and once that’s completed, additional connections to HCP can quickly be established in as little time as only 30 minutes. With your selected ERP data in HCP you now have at your disposal the complete power of the single best platform in the world to preform both analysis and predictive analytics, SAP HANA. Next you can use Smart Data integration and replication to read information from a Hadoop database or any non-SAP data source.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.26.13 PM.png

Built in just a few days, an ERP Agile Solutions with HCP provides SAP business users with the valuable insights they desire. The SAP HANA Academy’s has created a step-by-step course showing how to build a sample ERP Agile Solution called ERP Agile Inventory with HCP. Utilizing both the simplicity of the cloud and the native powers of SAP HANA, this and every ERP Agile Solution enables you to marry data from any source with information locked in your SAP ERP system.

 

The business case for the ERP Agile Inventory course shows how a retail manager’s inventory of over-the-counter medicine throughout their chain’s various locations is affected by local environmental factors such as air quality, temperature and humidity.

 

HCI-DS connects an on-premise SAP ERP system to a HCP instance. Information is then read from a trio of ERP tables - MAKT for the product, TW001W for store location, and vBAP for a year’s worth of sales data. Then Smart Data replications from the HCP instance reads a Hadoop data lake to get air quality index and heat information from various US weather stations. Next SAP HANA’s geospatial function is used to map each store with the closest weather station.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.32.05 PM.png

Once this information is in SAP HANA we use the Predictive Analytics Library’s exponential regression algorithm to find, and therefore predict the sales for each product at every store based on AQI, temperature and humidity. From the ERP system we get inventory for every product from each store and compute if a store's current stock is adequate, in excess, or scarce. When the weather conditions change predictive analytics is rerun to identify the nearest stores with an excess supply of a scarce product. Then we embed a SAP Fiori application which transfers the inventory between locations via a single query.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.43.24 PM.png

(6:20 – 11:30) 3) ERP Agile Inventory with HCP Demo

 

The first thing you will most likely notice when you open the ERP Agile Inventory with HCP demo is that it is secured via SAP Identity Management. If you would like to use the ERP Agile Inventory demo please send a request with your SAP I, C, or D SAP number to hanaacademy@sap.com.

 

The first tile of the demo's SAP Fiori Launchpad, called ERP Agility, displays the heart of the ERP Agile Inventory application on the left hand side. We have combined store inventory and store location data from the ERP system with data from an external data source to readily display how the local environmental factors are affecting each store via marrying the store locations with the nearest weather stations using SAP HANA geospatial.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.50.42 PM.png

By running a location’s historical sales data and the local AQI and temperature through predictive analytics we derive a predicted sales figure for the current environmental condition. With current inventory data at our finger tips we can thus simply assess the product’s current glut or dearth.

 

Another tile in the ERP Agile Inventory’s SAP Fiori Launchpad is a simulator. This enables you to manually input the environmental conditions for a specific location.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 1.57.58 PM.png

After ramping up the AQI for the Bishop location in the simulator, Joe shows back in the ERP Agile tile how an absurdly high AQI of 490 has resulted in a huge predicted demand for various products and thus cased a massive shortage. Now we know in real-time which items we will need to quickly ship to the Drugs R Us location in Bishop.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 2.03.12 PM.png

Joe continues the demo by showcasing the immense power SAP HANA wields in the ERP Agile Inventory demo by clicking on the blue check inventory icon. For each product currently lacking stock, a single query of SAP HANA’s geospatial functionality is run to find the closest store with an excess supply of that product. Now that we know where the excess stock is located when we can call a SAP Fiori application that executes on the SAP ERP system the transfer of stock between locations to sate the predicted demand.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 2.25.58 PM.png

Store inventory levels and current stock transfers are best shown on a map accessed via another SAP Fiori tile. Built with the SAP HANA platform, a XSJS app transfers the ERP inventory information to a third-party HERE map API to visually display Drugs R Us' fluid inventory.

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 2.26.51 PM.png

(11:30 - 12:40) 4) How to Get the Demo & 5) How to Have the SAP HANA Academy Build You an Ad Hoc ERP Agile Solution

 

Once again if you would like to use the ERP Agile Inventory demo please email an access request with your I, C, or D SAP number to hanaacademy@sap.com. Please visit the SAP HANA Academy to see how you can technically build this demo.

 

Attention SAP Partners: If would like the SAP HANA Academy to teach you how to build this ERP Agile Inventory demo or even build an ad hoc ERP Agile Solution please drop us a line. We would love to show you how the SAP HANA Cloud Platform can quickly enhance the business value of your SAP ERP system or Business Suite.

Introduction

SAP HANA is fully designed for high availability as explained by Chaim Bendelac in his paper: Introduction to High Availability for SAP HANA.

 

System replication is a key technology in this design as it supports both disaster recovery, e.g. data center or site failure, and fault recovery, e.g. hardware failure.

 

We have just completed a series of video tutorials for the SAP HANA Academy that cover a wide range of topics related to system replication. You can find the full playlist here: SAP HANA System Replication - YouTube

 

This completes the product documentation and some excellent resources, like the System Replication How To Guide by Mechthild Bore-Wuesthof.

 

Concepts

The first video briefly discusses system replication concepts, RPO, RTO, etc.

 

 

 

Setup Replication

The next video demonstrates how to setup replication using SAP HANA studio or the command line tool HDBNSUTIL.

 

 

Full Sync

The next video explains the different replication modes and the full synch option.

 

 

Configuration Parameters

In the next video, the different configuration parameters are discussed.

 

 

Disable Replication

The next video, demonstrates how to properly disable system replication.

 

As discussed in SAP Note 1945676 - Correct usage of hdbnsutil -sr_unregister this needs to be done in the correct sequence.

 

 

Takeover

The next video, demonstrates how to perform a takeover.

 

For a decision guideline, see SAP Note: 2063657 - HANA System Replication takeover decision guideline

and SCN blogs: HANA System Replication - Take-over process; HANA System Replication - Switching back and forth

 

 

Near Zero Downtime Upgrade

The next demonstrates how you can use system replication for near zero downtime upgrades. I will show you how you can upgrade your secondary system from revision 90 (SPS 09) to revision 91, perform a takeover to the secondary, upgrade old primary, and reestablish the replication. Although not complicated, near zero downtime upgrades does require to perform the steps in the right order and using the correct command options.

1984882 - Using HANA System Replication for Hardware Exchange with minimum/zero Downtime

 

 

More Information

Product documentation

How to setup and manage system replication is documented in the SAP HANA Administration Guide (Chapter 4, Availability and Scalability)

 

SCN Blogs

How to Perform System Replication for SAP HANA

How To Configure Network Settings for HANA System Replication

Network Recommendations for SAP HANA System Replication

SAP HANA TDI - Network Requirements

HANA System Replication - Switching back and forth

Registering a Secondary system for System Replication - Troubleshooting

SAP HANA - Host Auto-Failover

 

SAP Notes

1945676 - Correct usage of hdbnsutil -sr_unregister

1984882 - Using HANA System Replication for Hardware Exchange with minimum/zero Downtime

1999880 - FAQ: SAP HANA System Replication

2063657 - HANA System Replication takeover decision guideline

1984882 - Using HANA System Replication for Hardware Exchange with minimum/zero Downtime

 

Thank you for watching

You can view more free online videos and hands-on use cases to help you answer the What, How and Why questions about SAP HANA and the SAP HANA Cloud Platform on the SAP HANA Academy at youtube.com/saphanaacademy, follow us on Twitter @saphanaacademy., or connect with us on LinkedIn.

The age old question(s)

 

It has been a long standing open question for many SAP HANA administrators:

     "Where do I find a list of all the parameters that I can set in the .ini files?"

 

Along with the

     "Do I need to restart the system after changing this parameter?"

my feeling is that these questions are among the most often asked questions.

 

Typically, the answer here was:

     "It's not required nor recommended to fiddle with the SAP HANA parameters unless SAP tells you so."

 

All nice and good, but still the avid DBA would just love to know what the parameters do that can be seen SAP HANA Studio.

 

A surprising answer

 

Via the ongoing effort of the SAP Global Service & Support Mission Critical Control HANA Deployment Rooms (otherwise known as SAP GSS MCC HANA Deployment Rooms - but that would be too short for such an important team) to share know-how and experiences, I got to know SAP note 2036111 - Configuration parameters for the SAP HANA system.

 

This SAP notes carries a PDF file attachment, which neatly lists most of the parameters and what is to be known about them.

Here's how it looks like:

16-05-2015 17-14-09.png

As you see, there's information about the necessity of a restart, links to related information, a brief description and which revisions support the parameter.

 

It's not the complete list of possible parameters and it's not part of the standard documentation, but I really appreciate to have a nice reference for the most important parameters now.

 

Surprise reprise

When I was done enjoying my recent discovery I thought "well, this should be in the standard documentation..." and did a quick search.

Guess what: the SAP note is already mentioned in the SAP HANA Administration Guide. (alright, it's just once and it's really tiny print, but it is in fact in there ).

Shows again that it really can pay off to read the documentation carefully.

 

Anyhow, there you go - now you know!

 

Cheers,

Lars

 

p.s.

Should the parameter documentation not be part of the standard documentation set (and not just an attachment to a hard-to-find-SAP note) by the time for a second edition of SAP HANA Administration, Richard Bremer and I definitively need to reference this SAP note, too.

At the end of March I was approached by my good friend and colleague John Appleby with a challenge:


Let’s build an IOT real time healthcare demo for SAPPHIRE


So we did, and in this blog I’m going to talk through the demo that John, myself and of course the Fiori guru DJ Adams built in just over 3 weeks in our spare time in the run up to this years SAPPHIRE NOW. You may have seen John's post during SAPPHIRE talking briefly about what we were doing and what we built but this is a bit more of an in-depth look at exactly what we did.


The scenario was simple; for specific attendees of SAPPHIRE, a three day marathon SAP conference event in Orlando, we would equip them with heath sensing biometric sensors and feed that data, in real time, into the SAP HANA database present on the show floor. Finally we would display that data for the world to see in an SAP Fiori (like) user interface which we called Bluefit.


The Components

The demo could be broken down into three areas:


  • The Wearable
    • Our “patients” would wear a Moto360 smartwatch running Android wear and Google Fit. This would allow us to track their step counts, their heart rate and of course their distance travelled.


  • Getting the Data to HANA
    • To get the data from the watch into HANA we had to have a middle man which in our case was a Moto X (2014) smart phone running Android Lollipop. This could act as the middleman retrieving our watch data and then pushing this into SAP HANA.


  • Visualising the data
    • For the data visualisation we utilised raw HANA analytics built at the HANA database level and exposed that data via the XS engine and OData services into a fully fledged Fiori application.


All of this means that as our patients made their way around the showfloor, their watches would track their biometric data, their phones would push that data into our SAP HANA database and finally we could watch this all in real-time via our SAP Fiori front end app.


Technical Deep Dive

Going into a bit more detail - how did we actually build the demo:


Bluefit on the watchBluefit_Watch.jpg

There are many different ways you can approach the building of a fitness/health tracking app on Android-based wearable devices. The first approach we took was to attempt to tap into the raw sensor data from within the watch itself using the provided Android Wear APIs. We had some success in this area and managed to successfully pull the required data. However logging, storing and transmitting that data manually from the watch, while completely possible, was a bit more complicated than this demo required.


During the development it became obvious that there had to be a better way to retrieve our data, and there was. Enter the Google Fit SDK. A component of google play services, it provided us with historical and time aggregated sensor data. For instance the API supported a request for todays step count since midnight to right now without having to manually store sensor data. Perfect for what we required.


Communications between the watch and the phone were achieved using the Google messaging API provided specifically for communicating with Android Wear devices.


Bluefit on the PhoneBluefit_Phone.jpg

The Bluefit app on the phone acted as the middleman between our fitness data and SAP HANA. The app was the brain behind the operation ensuring that the fitness data on the watch was kept up to date as well as ensuring that data was being pushed to SAP HANA at regular intervals.


Utilising the Google Fit SDK, the app would keep a log of fitness data throughout the day and then, once every minute or so, post that data to SAP HANA using a standard authenticated HTTP POST.


Little side note: those of you who have every been to a teched/d-Code or SAPPHIRE NOW event will, I’m sure, appreciate the flaky nature of both the WiFi and cell service at these events. As a result of that, the app had to be designed and built to be error resistant. It would hold a record of an entire days worth of data until it could successfully post that data to HANA if it needed to. This meant that no historical data would be lost because of the 25,000 people attempting to use the same wifi during the keynote.


Each post from the phone included the phones serial number to allow us to know which device was sending the data.


Bluefit’s Database and UI

To add a sense of reality to the whole thing, we utilised a 3 node SAP HANA cluster from our good friends at Lenovo which was literally sitting on the show floor to host our demo. Those of you who may have seen our tweets giving the link to our step count leaderboard were literally logging onto a server sitting in the middle of the SAPPHIRE NOW show floor in orlando!


To store, analyse and expose the health data we utilised SAP HANA’s development platform, specifically the XS engine. The database was comprised of a subset of tables from a WHO regulated model we worked on a while back giving us patient data, activity data and, of course, bridges to link our devices posting the data to our patients.


On top of this we built a number of attribute views (joining patient data with device data for example) as well as analytical views to provide an aggregated view of our patient data.


Finally the data was exposed for public consumption through a single OData service on top of which we built a Fiori-like responsive application. This gave two views of the data:


  • Patient Data
    • This view provided us with an individual view of our patient’s data. This included their personal details (gender, height, weight and age) as well as their live biometric data (heart rate, step count and distance).

04_Bluefit_Patient_Data_Screenshot.png

  • “Stepdown” - the leaderboard
    • Known as “Stepdown” for the conference, this gave us a leaderboard view of our main patients, allowing conference attendees to see how each of our patients were doing compared with each other.

03_Bluefit_Stepdown_Screenshot.png

Conclusion

So there you have it. In a little over three weeks from conception to demo we built, mostly in spare time, a fairly simple IOT demo using consumer products, SAP HANA and an analytics based front-end on SAPUI5. The skill set for this demo was not huge either:

  • Watch App
    • Java and Android
    • Knowledge of Android wear APIs
  • Phone App
    • Java and Android
    • Basic networking knowledge and HTTP
  • HANA & UI
    • Native HANA development
    • SAPUI5 Frontend & OData


One of the reasons I find this demo so interesting is because it is becoming increasingly obvious that the topic of IOT is not going away and is going to play a major part in everything that we do going forward. From consumer tech tracking data like this as standard to use cases in the enterprise such as smart grids, health care monitoring and so much more. With the flexibility and raw power of SAP HANA it was a perfect fit for this demo to achieve what we needed and without a huge amount of effort.


If you have any questions about how this demo was built or would like more info - please do comment below and I'll be glad to answer.

There are various options to checks the performance of a BW on HANA system. Ofcourse you can look at the various transactions which have been around for many, many years:


  • Check the workload of processes with transactions SM50 , SM51, SM66
  • Check the CPU load with transaction OS06
  • Check the system workload with transaction ST03 or ST03N
  • Check the number of logged on users logged with transactions SM04 or AL08
  • Check the database performance with ST04 (similar to looking at the HANA Studio, Administration Console):

1.png

It’s also best practice to take a deep dive into the Early Watch Reporting as it gives a ton of information on the health of your system. I’m still surprised on how often companies don’t make that a regular practice. It can safe you a ton of misery in the future if you do regular checks.

 

Dealing with a HANA appliance can be somewhat different. Hooking it up to solution manager is an option, but sometimes you just want to do some quick ad hoc checking to get a feeling on the status of the system. This is where the “SQL Statement collection for SAP HANA” comes into play and more specifically, the Mini Checks.

 

Note “1969700 - SQL statement collection for SAP HANA” comes with a nifty zip file with a ton of SQL statements which can be used to collect information on the health of the system:

2.png

 

For this blog I want to zoom in on the Mini Checks as they execute a ton of checks including an indication if you have a potential issue or not. To top it off, also note numbers are mentioned. What more can you wish for


As you can see in the above screenshot, there are various versions of the Mini Checks:


  • SQL: "HANA_Configuration_MiniChecks_SSS" (minimum set of checks that should work in any environment with the standalone statistics server)
  • SQL: "HANA_Configuration_MiniChecks_Rev70+_SSS" (extended set of checks that only works as of revision 70 and with the standalone statistics server)
  • SQL: "HANA_Configuration_MiniChecks_Rev74+_ESS" (comprehensive set of checks that only works as of revision 74 and with the embedded statistics server)
  • SQL: "HANA_Configuration_MiniChecks_Rev90+_ESS" (comprehensive set of checks that only works as of revision 90 and with the embedded statistics server)


In general you should use the version that fits best to your system environment, so that the most comprehensive set of checks is executed. Therefore it is important to check upfront your HANA revision number and whether or not you are using a standalone or embedded statistics server. The statistics server assists you with monitoring the SAP HANA system, collecting historical performance data and warning you of system alerts (such as resource exhaustion). The historical data is stored in the _SYS_STATISTICS schema.


The new Statistics Server is also known as the embedded Statistics Server or Statistics Service. Prior to SP7 the Statistics Server was a separate server process - like an extra Index Server with monitoring services on top of it. The new Statistics Server is now embedded in the Index Server. The advantage of this is to simplify the SAP HANA architecture and assist in avoiding out of memory issues of the Statistics Server, as it was defaulted to use only 5% of the total memory. SP7 and SP8 still uses the old server, but you can migrate to the new service by implementing note 1917938.

 

As an example, I’m firing off the “HANA_Configuration_MiniChecks_SSS” statements on my HANA box. A couple of seconds later I get my output in a neatly formatted table:

3.png

In order to be able to analyse the results further, you can export your results to a flat file and import the results in Excel. Filtering on areas which deviate (filter on “X” on column value “C”) gives the areas to focus on:

5.png

 

Right of the bat we can see a couple of issues in my test system. Backups are not regularly executed (910-945) and disk size is an issue (250). These two can be related as backups might fail due to stuck situations or an overflown file system.

 

Also it shows I need to do an optimization of compression (560) and my log files sizing is way to small (1610 and 765).

 

Furthermore it seems auto merge is switched off for a lot of tables. I could deep dive further into which tables are affected and if I need to take action by using another SQL statement which was supplied in the original zip file: “HANA_Tables_ColumnStore_AutoMergeDisabled”

 

After execution, I get a list of affected tables, including the statement to alter the table settings, how is that for convenience!

6.png

You can find more information on the checks in note 1999993 - SAP HANA Mini Checks. It is the Holy Grail related to HANA Mini Checks.


Thank you for reading. I hope it helps in keeping your HANA system healthy!

 

Ronald.

Introduction

 

SAP DB Control Center (DCC) is a web-based database monitoring and administration tool for SAP HANA that was introduced in the SPS09 release.  With DCC, you can monitor and administer a landscape of SAP HANA databases (i.e. two or more instances).  It allows database administrators and IT management teams to view alerts and database health information at a single glance.

 

If you haven't seen how the product looks like, there's an excellent 2-part tutorial with lots of screenshots here:

 

 

There's also an SAP HANA Academy video here:

 

 

As the product evolves from its initial release and customer adoption increases, I've started to see situations where the DCC system may not behave as expected, typically because something is missing or incorrect in the system's configuration.  In this blog post, I'm going to list a number of issues that can occur and how to resolve them.

 

Problem: DCC is not collecting enterprise health data

 

This problem occurs when the DCC_COLLECTOR account (user that runs collection jobs to gather health data for each monitored system) doesn't have the correct role assigned to it.  What you see is the number of systems displayed in the Monitor Enterprise Health tile is either zero or one:

 

DCC_COLLECTOR not assigned DCCCollector role.png

 

The correct role to assign to the DCC_COLLECTOR account is "DBCCCollector" (that's in addition to the "Monitoring" role).  Note that this applies to DCC revision 93 (Patch 7) or higher.  In the earlier revisions, the role was "DBCCAdmin", but that is now solely used for the DCC_ADM account.

 

All you need to do is assign the "DBCCCollector" role to the DCC_COLLECTOR account using SAP HANA Studio or the Web-based Development Workbench:

 

DBCCCollector Role.png

 

After waiting a few minutes, you'll see the number of systems in the Monitor Enterprise Health tile increase, meaning that health data is now being collected.

 

Problem: I've correctly assigned the DBCCCollector role and the DCC system is still not collecting enterprise health data

 

You exhibit this issue when the Enterprise Health Monitor displays the question mark icon (?) for Availability, Performance and Capacity in all systems except for one (the DCC system):

 

No health data collected.png

 

There's a few XS jobs that must be active by the DCC_COLLECTOR account to collect the enterprise health data and maintain the message queue.  To see the status of these jobs, open the SAP HANA XS Administration tool:

 

http://<dcc_system_host>:<dcc_system_port>/sap/hana/xs/admin/jobs

 

Login as SYSTEM and ensure the user for the DCC jobs JobWorkerTask, Maintenance and ScheduleCollections is DCC_COLLECTOR, their status is ACTIVE, and their last run status is SUCCESS.  For example, in the following screenshot, we see that JobWorkerTask is not assigned a user and is not active:

 

XS Jobs not active.png

 

To fix the problem, click on the XS Job name, then click on the Configuration tab.  Now provide the DCC_COLLECTOR user account credentials, check the Active checkbox and click Save the bottom right corner of the page:

 

Activate Collector XS Job.png

 

After the job is saved successfully, you can return to the XS Job Dashboard page and you'll now notice that all the DCC jobs have DCC_COLLECTOR as their user, their status is ACTIVE and their last run status is SUCCESS.  Wait a few minutes and go back to Monitor Enterprise Health in DCC and you'll see that the health data for your systems is now collected.

Roopa Amin , Director of Business Intelligence at Dr. Pepper/Snapple Group, walks us thru their massively successful BW on HANA migration project.  The new system lets them see incredibly detailed sales data to ensure that distributors and bottlers are providing retailers with the right Dr. Pepper products in the right place at the right time– all of which was impossible to do in their old BW system on a disk-based database.

 

HE16.jpg

 

We hope you enjoy hearing Dr. Pepper’s  first-hand experience with mission-critical SAP HANA.  Please let us know your feedback in the comments below.

To get more real-world customer HANA stories, subscribe to our iTunes or SoundCloud feed for weekly podcasts that will cover multiple in-production customer use case scenarios for SAP HANA.

Also, if you’ve got a killer SAP HANA scenario and would like to share it on the HANA Effect podcast, please let us know.

 

Transcript: SAP HANA Effect Episode 16

Sponsored by:

xeon_i_ww_rgb_3000

Here is my third and last part of the SAP Sapphire 2015 coverage. I apologize for delay but SAP Sapphire is very intensive experience and it was impossible for me to find time required to consolidate all information for the blogs (each blog took me around 3-5 hours).

 

Here is the cross-link section how to get to individual blog entries:

 

SAP Sapphire 2015 - Day 1 - Technical point of view

SAP Sapphire 2015 - Day 2 - Technical point of view

SAP Sapphire 2015 - Day 3 - Technical point of view (this blog)

 

SAP Keynote

 

Update 19.5.2015 - keynote replay was finally made available - so here is my summary of keynote itself

 

Keynote from Hasso Plattner was divided into main four parts.

 

Part One - From Vision to Reality

 

First and biggest part was focused on looking back on how the road to SAP HANA and S/4 HANA started.

 

Hasso outlined that idea started in 2006 at Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI) by project to rethink how ERP system would look like if it would be based on database with zero response time. As part of theoretical exercise students came to the conclusion that all aggregates and other constructs required to accelerate performance are redundant and can be removed. Such new approach would also bring dramatic footprint reduction and significant application code simplification as code could focus only on application logic and did not need to focus on maintaining redundancies. Here the students voted to change the objective from building new ERP system to building new database.

 

After this introduction Hasso started to talk about the importance of speed and how it can help business to redesign their processes to be more successful, he also quoted CEO of Walmart saying that it's all about speed and who does not realize that now will lose in the future. Hasso said that SAP is well aware of this paradigm shift and therefore they are releasing S/4 HANA. He also mentioned that there are more than 2000 startup betting their life on SAP HANA and that can be seen as kind of crowd voting that SAP HANA is right solution.

 

Returning back to history - in 2008 Hasso and the team of students created Cash Forecast Prototype application on top of their in-memory database prototype where Hasso said that at this point he realized that systems of future need to be more then systems of record looking into past - systems need to be looking into the future - predicting future.

 

Next part of keynote was focused on main aspects of developing applications tailored for speed (on top of SAP HANA) where Hasso outlined most problematic areas where SAP HANA can deliver speed but which are frequently overlooked during development:

  • Massively Parallel Processing (not being nature of application programmers)
  • Partitioning and Replication (columnar databases being different then row databases)
  • Simplified Data Model (no need for redundant data)
  • Data Footprint Reduction (by columnar compression and by removing redundancies)
  • Structured and Unstructured Data (both now possible in one system)
  • Transactional and Analytic Workload Reunited (no need to have two separated system because of performance reasons)

 

Here is screen-shot as presented during the keynote:

Keynote-Sapphire2015-1.jpg

 

Then Hasso introduced his new book and made public announcement that if anyone will read the book and will not understand what SAP HANA is good for then Hasso himself will refund the book (even if received for free). Then he shortly introduced the content of the book.

 

Book introduction and announcement can be also seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQHtxUK9tz0

 

In next part Hasso explained his vision he had in 2009 for the boardroom of the future - one meeting room for all key executive functions - CEO, CFO, head of sales, head of products, etc. - all of them getting real-time overview of whole corporation with option to deep dive into any topic they are just discussing - so that there is no need for pre-made PowerPoint presentations anymore which are static and inflexible.

 

Here is screen-shot as presented during the keynote:

Keynote-Sapphire2015-2.jpg

 

Then he presented SAP boardroom of the future that is being used in SAP and challenged customers to start building their own boardrooms. Hasso outlined that this is the new way how companies will be led in future.

 

Vision for boardroom of the future was complemented by demo presented by Mike Crowe, CIO at the Colgate-Palmolive Company showing how they execute their smarter and faster business reviews.

 

Boardroom part of keynote can be also seen separately here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Y2Oz5KORg0

 

Next demo was focused on retailers solving two stock specific issues in food distribution - expiration date getting close versus food shortage. Demo was able to find, propose and rank most effective options how to address the issue including actions like reschedule of the order to different date, increasing other sales orders, doing marketing activities or donations. Demo was leveraging innovations delivered by Simple Finance and Simple Logistics.

 

This demo can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAK3T0fTBEk

 

At the end of this part Hasso challenged SAP to work as quickly as possible to re-implement all areas to run with SAP Fiori and said that all other UI technologies will be removed over the time.

 

Part Two - Design Thinking in Co-Innovation Projects

 

In this part Hasso outlined importance of Design Thinking and that it is important to start the software development process from very beginning - by understanding and observing the user - phases which were missing in the software development process and which are now being fully embraced by SAP and heavily used in co-innovation projects with customers.

 

This approach led SAP to build completely different set of applications. One example of such application helping to fight cancer disease was demonstrated by Prof. Dr. Christof von Kalle, director of Translation Oncology at the National Center for Tumor Diseases in Heidelberg, Germany.

 

This demo can be also seen separately on this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vYg2u6wvOQ

 

The demo was followed by speech of Dr. Peter Yu, President of American Society of Clinical Oncology explaining their challenge on how to bring all individual medical records about individual patients together to create shared system from which additional information might be extracted.

 

Part Three - Performance Measurements

 

This part started with discussion about Data Footprint Reduction where Hasso used example of existing US customer having 54 TB of data in their SAP ERP system. According to the presentation this would need hardware with total memory volume of 96 TB for active and another 96 TB for failover system - hardware costs might be estimated to be around 20.000.000 USD in list prices (prices are here only to illustrate the proportions).

 

Here is screen-shot as presented during the keynote:

Keynote-Sapphire2015-3.jpg

 

Just by putting the SAP ERP system on SAP HANA the data volume came down to 9.5 TB of data. This could be hosted on one 24 TB server for active and another 24 TB for failover system - decreasing the estimated costs 4x to around 5.000.000 USD in list prices.

 

Putting the same volume of data on S/4 HANA system (which is removing unnecessary redundancies) would decrease the memory requirements to 5 TB of data (3 TB of active data and 2 TB of historical data). If historical data is placed on cheaper HW then we could reach the overall hardware costs of around 550.000 USD in list prices.

 

Key takeaway was that S/4 HANA system which is correctly partitioned in active and historical data can dramatically reduce data footprint (up to 10x in example above) and could also decrease the hardware costs (up to 40x in example above).

 

In next part of keynote Hasso described the speed challenge SAP received from different customer and outlined that SAP was able to win this challenge by using SAP HANA. Customer was able to report above massive volumes of the data (200 billion data entries) with very low response times as illustrated on the graph presented during the keynote.

 

Here is screen-shot as presented during the keynote:

Keynote-Sapphire2015-4.jpg

 

Last demo in this part was focused on data partitioning and how it can help customers to further accelerate their solutions - this demo is described in detailed in next section (see below).

 

Part Four - ??? (I missed the official title)

 

In this last part of keynote Hasso introduced new CTO of SAP - Quentin Clark and handed over the word to him.

 

Quentin speech was focused on SAP HANA Cloud Platform - saying that it needs to be simple and open platform so that it could be easily used for any development required and easy to integrate with external systems, with business networks and with mobile devices.

 

SAP goal is to build new ecosystems that will be using SAP HANA Cloud Platform as base for their solutions. Their cloud platform will be enabled to data from IoT (Internet of Things), Streaming, Social, Application systems and Analytical systems. SAP HANA Cloud Platform will be built on top of SAP HANA database, Sybase ASE, Sybase Anywhere and Hadoop where SAP HANA will be integrating these products together.

 

Other announcements included:

  • Intel Haswell announcement (which actually happened on day 1)

see http://scn.sap.com/community/hana-in-memory/blog/2015/05/06/sap-sapphire-2015--day-1--technical-point-of-view

  • Lenovo record-breaking benchmark on SAP HANA

http://events.sap.com/sapphirenow/en/session/15904 (part between 12:40 and 15:01)

http://blog.lenovo.com/blog/entry/1559

  • IBM releasing first solution for SAP HANA on Power systems

http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/46747.wss

 

Keynote was closed by last demo showing how SAP HANA Cloud Platform can be used to build mobile enabled application for rewarding employees with job points and how this can be easily integrated with business networks for spending these points on „real world rewards“.

 

Demo can be seen here separately: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fOo1omyzCt8

 

JobPts (Job Points) application is available here:

https://www.sapstore.com/solutions/95001/JobPts---Motivation,-Recognition-and-Rewards-as-a-Service

http://www.sapappcenter.com/p/3383

 

Whole keynote can be replayed here: http://events.sap.com/sapphirenow/en/session/16024

 

SAP HANA - Impact of Data partitioning (by HPI)

 

One part of Hasso Plattner's Keynote was dedicated to HPI research on Data Partitioning.

 

Introduction from Hasso Plattner

 

Hasso introduced this part by his explanation that data partitioning for columnar databases is following different principles then for row databases. Main difference is that columnar databases are mostly doing full or partial attribute vector scans where it is extremely critical (from performance perspective) that whole column or column partition is fully available in memory (otherwise the scanning operation will be significantly slowed down by reading from disk).

 

Hasso outlined that data tiering (hot-warm-cold principles) which are being developed can drastically degrade performance if active data being accessed by application are not in memory. He also stressed that database cannot correctly anticipate which data will be requested by application and therefore database is not able decide what data to keep in memory - that it must be application proactively specifying which data is required to keep in memory.

 

Introduction from Hasso Plattner (my thought on this subject)

 

As coincidence I discussed this topic with fellow SAP Mentors just one day before the keynote - I must admit I was incorrectly arguing that this decision logic needs to be pushed down into a database - reason for this statement was that otherwise every application would have to be "tailored for partitioning" (where partitioning might be also seen as kind of data tiering) - having in mind usability point of view where I believed that it would be good to keep SAP HANA simple and fully transparent to the application.

 

After hearing the explanation from Hasso I have no other choice then to agree to performance argument - if application would be asking even one single entry which is on different column partition maybe even not loaded into memory - then that particular column partition would have to be completely loaded from disk and scanned. In such case query processing would be slowed down by disk read operation and any positive effect of partitioning would be gone (as additional partitions will be scanned anyway).

 

So the my conclusion based on what was said is that either all data should be completely in memory or application needs to be "tailored for partitioning (as kind of data tiering)" and deciding on logic which data should be in which partition.

 

Question that remains is if those partitions which are containing data that are rarely used could be stored on "cheaper hardware" which would bring the price down knowing that any access to this data would be slow. Or if even those rarely used partitions need to be on premium hardware "parked on disk" and loaded only when required.

 

Demo on Data Tiering by Carsten Meyer from HPI

 

In second part of this demo Carsten Meyer took word and explained setup which was used as part of this demo.

 

Since I was confused by the details of the setup I went to HPI booth after keynote and talked to Martin Boissier from HPI who was very kind to clarify the missing parts. In the description below I will combine what was described during the keynote, HPI project description (from HPI pages) with explanations from Martin.

 

Demo was working with two independent SAP HANA databases. All queries were executed against both databases at the same time and response time and system load was evaluated and compared to illustrate the performance difference between the two configurations.

 

Here is screen-shot from the HPI demo dashboard (as presented during the keynote):

HPI.jpg

 

First system (colored as blue being on left side) was traditional deployment - data stored in one SAP HANA database in one single partition running one server having 120 cores.

 

Second system (colored as green being on the right side) was "custom" deployment which needs more detailed explanation. One SAP HANA database was deployed to run on three separate servers (scale-out) where instance on each node was limited to use only certain amount of cores (50+50+20) so that total amount of cores is same as for the first system.

 

Reason for this "divide" between the three servers was to achieve much cheaper setup - based on assumptions that smaller systems are generally cheaper (per core) then bigger system.

 

Data was stored over three partitions - each partition on different physical server. First partition (called as MASTER) was containing active data and was used for OLTP workload with read and write operations.

 

Second partition (called REPLICA) was "copy" of MASTER partition based on something similar to table replication (see Administration Guide for more details) and was used for read-only OLAP queries. If you know HANA you might be surprised by what I just wrote and this was part where I was confused as such setup is not something available today. Here Martin explained to me that they used "customized" code of SAP HANA - and it makes perfect sense - after all this is research project - so there is no reason to be limited to what happens to be available today as part of globally available code.

 

However it is equally important to understand that this is not something available today out of the box. I did not see SAP HANA roadmap session as it was completely packed and security did not let me in - but I would guess this might come in next SAP HANA releases.

 

Third partition (called HISTORICAL) was containing infrequently used data - however it was still running as traditional in-memory partition (so no technology like Dynamic Data Tiering was used in this case).

 

Demo was executed by simulating OLTP (transactional) and OLAP (analytic) workload with predefined amount of concurrent users. Dashboard was visualizing average response time (in ms) and system load (in %). When amount of concurrent users was increased then it was clear that partitioned system was able to deal with the workload with around 2,5x smaller response time then single partition setup.

 

Second part of the demo was based on using Colgate dashboard (presented before this demo). When action was taken against the already overloaded system then measured response time for this action was clearly better on partitioned system.

 

Demo on Data Tiering by Carsten Meyer from HPI (my thought on this subject)

 

I believe it is important to correctly understand the message. The "magic" why second (green) setup was faster was because data was correctly partitioned. Following factors were in play (as also explained at HPI project description):

  • OLTP (transactional) workload was faster because it was working only on first partition (so less data had to be processed during the operation)
  • OLAP (analytic) workload was faster because it was running against replica - so there was no collision between analytic and transactional workload (which tend to compete for resources and are running better if separated on different cores)

 

Reasons for putting partitions on different servers were following:

  • Partitions were defined to be relatively independent - you run the query either against the actual data (there you stay within one partition) and result is fast or against actual and historical data together where you accept some performance hit by having to use inter-server communication
  • Using smaller servers is generally cheaper (per core) then using super-sized servers - therefore scale-out setup is expected to be cheaper (this can also be seen as direction on how to properly address ever increasing data volumes where server requirements might grow above the size of one server)

 

Key messages from this keynote demo were following:

  • If you partition correctly then you can reach much better performance with same resources
  • If you leverage "partition replication" (hopefully available soon) you can separate OLTP (transactional) and OLAP (analytic) workload and get even better performance
  • If you perform previous points correctly then you might place partitions on different nodes to reach lower costs without any significant degradation in performance

 

I am personally concerned that adding third point directly from the beginning might be tricky part. Reason for saying this is that I am afraid that some attendees might miss the key points and directly jump to invalid conclusion that "scale-out is faster and cheaper then single-node".

 

Therefore I will try to clarify that by saying following:

  • It is wrong to understand the demo as that "scale-out is faster than single-node" - on the contrary scale-out is typically slower then single-node because of inter-node communication that is happening over the network - scale-out CAN be as fast as single-node only in case that data is correctly partitioned and inter-node communication is kept on minimum level (as on example above) - additionally separating OLTP (transactional) and OLAP (analytic) workloads to different nodes might make it faster - but this might happen only in very carefully designed setup with proper partitioning as hard prerequisite

 

Open questions (thoughts)

 

I wonder how the result of the demo would look like if the second setup would not be scale-out system but single-node system - where each partition would be pinned to particular set of cores (not allowed to touch any other cores).

 

Such setup should also separate OLTP (transactional) and OLAP (analytic) workloads and avoid any inter-node communication. It would be interesting to understand what the real effect of going scale-out is with such setup (quantified difference between three partitions on one node versus three partitions on three nodes).

 

Interesting links

 

Replay of SAP Keynote part - "Data Replication with SAP HANA to Increase Workload Capacity"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOBQB5IIYLQ

 

HPI page on SAP Sapphire demo (summary):

http://hpi.de/en/veranstaltungen/messen/2015/sapphire-now-2015/hana-load-simulator-speed-up-cost-down-partitioning-data-into-actual-and-historical.html

 

HPI page of the project details:

http://hpi.de/en/plattner/projects/hana-load-simulator.html

 

Thank You for SAP Sapphire 2015

 

SAP Sapphire was exciting and I was happy to be able to participate at this event. I would like to express big thanks to everyone I met during SAP Sapphire 2015 and to SAP for making this event and for supporting SAP Mentors program. On top of that I would like to express special thanks to (alphabetically by company): Detlef Poth (Intel), Antonio Freitas (EMC), Martin Boissier (HPI), Markus Winter (SAP), Peter Schinagl (SUSE) and Bob Goldsand (VMware). Last but not least I would like to thank to everyone who spent time reading my SAP Sapphire 2015 blogs. ;-)

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