Key solution steps
SAP SYSTEM COPY - A BEFORE AND AFTER GUIDE
The task of a system copy created for updates is a carefully integrated system that takes on a specific role in an SAP system landscape. That is why customizing the SAP database of the target system differs significantly from customizing the database of the production system. In a system copy-based update, the database of the target system is completely overwritten with the contents of the production system. Therefore, all SAP-specific customization of the target system must be performed after the update with the system copy. The pre- and post-processing is often performed manually while the target system is running. Specific SAP transactions are used to customize the system. Execution can take a long time and is a source of human error. To automate most transactions, UC4 Automated System Copy for SAP can also be used. Before the update, UC4 Automated System Copy takes care of downloading the required content for the SAP customization from the target system and after the update is complete, uploading the content back to the system.
Until now, it has been common practice to create test systems as a client or system copy of the production system on a specific date. In these cases, a single client or the entire SAP system is duplicated. The corresponding instances of the SAP system have to be reinstalled. In addition, a copy of the source database must be created. These are standard procedures, but they can be disproportionately expensive for productive data sets of several terabytes. SAP and third-party tools for selective data extraction can significantly reduce the cost of deploying non-production SAP systems.
Several advantages at once
SAP production system copies are created for a variety of reasons, including: - Generating a new non-production system for short- or long-term use - Updating an existing non-production system An SAP system copy is called homogeneous if the source and target operating and database systems are identical. If this is not the case, the system copy is considered heterogeneous. Heterogeneous system copies or platform migrations are not supported by the HP StorageWorks System Copy software for SAP and are therefore not discussed further in this document. In addition, this document deals exclusively with system copies for non-production target systems. Overview of a homogeneous system copy Figure 1 shows copies of an SAP production system that are created for non-production systems. Some copies are short-term (ad hoc) in nature, while others are intended for long-term use. Note that when a long-term system is created from a system copy, a system copy may be needed for updates later in the system's life cycle. This adds the latest transactional data from the original production system. Given their particular importance, this document focuses on scenarios with system copies created for updates. Figure 1: Overview of scenarios with homogeneous SAP system copies Scenario with system copies for updates In order to meet constantly changing business requirements, a production system must be continuously developed and adapted after the initial installation. To do this, you need development, consolidation, and quality assurance (QA) systems that can provide the production system with the appropriate updates as SAP transports.
Users do not have to deal with individual tables, but can access a database of business entities. This means that they do not select tables, but business objects such as employees or documents. To do this, however, the tools must contain the object dependencies for SAP's complex data model. Even companies that offer the setup of test systems as a service rarely do this for any SAP dataset. In addition, users can define objects themselves to accommodate customizing and in-house developments.
"Shortcut for SAP Systems" offers the possibility to backup and restore any tables. Not only those that are considered in the PCA tool (Post Copy Automation) but also self-developed tables. Thanks to the simple and clear interface, backup and restore of self-developed tables can be integrated quickly and easily. The command line interface can also be used to automate the process: for example, a simple line command can be used to perform a complete backup of table contents before the system copy, and a simple line command can also be used to restore these tables after the system copy. This means that the complete backup or restore process can be integrated into any automation software.
In addition, an authorization concept for the system copy is required to protect the authentic data it contains.
Thus, the proposed solution allows you to optimize the automation and acceleration of SAP system copies generated for upgrades and reduce IT administration costs.