Mohan Potheri is VCDX#98 and has more than 20 years in IT infrastructure, with in depth experience on VMWARE virtualization. He currently focuses on evangelization of "Business Critical Applications (BCA)" and "Big Data” Virtualization on vSphere. He has extensive experience with business critical applications such as SAP, Oracle, SQL and Java across UNIX, Linux and Windows environments. Mohan Potheri is an expert on SAP virtualization and has been a speaker in multiple VMWORLD and PEX events. Prior to VMWARE, Mohan worked at many large enterprises where he has engineered fully virtualized ERP and business critical applications. He has planned, designed, implemented and managed robust highly available, DR compliant SAP on Oracle environments in UNIX and x86 environments.
In part 1 we introduced the concept of SAP HANA Application Workload guidance and using example business requirements to come up with a workload and vSphere cluster design for the SAP environment. In part 2 we looked at storage, network and security design for the proposed customer environment. In part 3 we looked at monitoring & management, backup/recovery and disaster recovery for SAP S4/HANA. In this final part we look at validating the design we built over the past three parts and conclude the four part blog series.
SAP S/4HANA Design Validation
Validation of an SAP design is often difficult because of the absence of publicly available validation and performance tools. This design utilizes best practices derived from vendor testing conducted in SAP labs. The SAP HANA database tier is critical to the infrastructure and must be validated. So as part of this SAP S/4HANA VVD solution, some SAP standard validation tools were used to exercise the designed infrastructure.
In part 1 we introduced the concept of SAP HANA Application Workload guidance and using example business requirements to come up with a workload and vSphere cluster design for the SAP environment. In part 2 we looked at storage, network and security design for the proposed customer environment. In this part we will look at monitoring & management, backup/recovery and disaster recovery for SAP S4/HANA.
SAP S/4HANA Monitoring and Management
Nearly every component of the IT stack contributes to application performance, which can make it challenging to identify the cause of issues when they arise. For many organizations, a lack of visibility can lead to mean-time-to-innocence hunts that waste time and create alert storms that drain the productivity of business teams. With a complex application such as SAP S/4HANA, performance issues can be even more difficult to specify because the application requires resources from the virtual environment, the network, and databases. However, integrating monitoring into a single console—such as VMware vRealize Operations Manager can provide visibility into SAP workloads and other IT relationships to impact performance.
In part 1 we introduced the concept of SAP HANA Application Workload guidance and using example business requirements to come up with a workload and vSphere cluster design for the SAP environment. In the second part we will look at storage, network and security design for the proposed customer environment.Availability Design
The availability design depends on the single point of failure (SPOF) analysis of components. There are components in the SAP infrastructure that are one of a kind and are potential SPOFs; other components are capable of having multiple instances for load balancing and availability.
SAP Business Suite 4 SAP HANA (or SAP S/4HANA) is the SAP Business Suite that is built on SAP’s in memory columnar database platform SAP HANA. SAP HANA®, the in-memory real-time platform, was initially introduced as a physical appliance and has steadily evolved to include support for virtualization with VMware vSphere® and SAP HANA tailored data center integration (TDI). Virtualized SAP HANA is now supported in scale-up and scale-out configurations in VMware® environments. Running SAP HANA on vSphere offers customers agility, resource optimization, and ease of provisioning. This solution enables SAP customers to provision instances of SAP HANA more quickly and effectively by using vSphere virtual machines (VM). Using the SAP HANA platform with the vSphere virtualization infrastructure constitutes an optimized environment for achieving a unique, cost-effective solution. VMware capabilities such as VMware vSphere vMotion®, VMware vSphere Distributed Resource Scheduler™ (vSphere DRS), and VMware vSphere High Availability (vSphere HA) are inherent components of the virtualized SAP HANA platform.
The need exists for a comprehensive, “end-to-end” solution that describes the implementation of a virtual SAP HANA deployment. VMware Solutions Labs was chosen to first develop a robust validated end to end solution. This is the first solution that takes the VMware Validated Design concept and then uses its components to run an Enterprise application like SAP on top of it. This prescriptive approach called Application Workload Guidance Design applies the VMware Validated Design (VVD) to SAP S/4HANA on the vSphere platform.
In the first partwe looked at public, private and Hybrid Cloud and their characteristics. In this part we will look at the common characteristics of business critical applications. In the second part , we looked at how some of these characteristics relate to the different types of Cloud infrastructure. In this final part we will look at he lifecycle of a business critical application in the cloud and the conclusion. Continue reading →
In the first part we looked at public, private and Hybrid Cloud and their characteristics. In this part we will look at the common characteristics of business critical applications. We will also look at how some of these characteristics relate to the different types of Cloud infrastructure.
Common Characteristics of Business Critical Applications (BCA):
Business critical applications typically have very stringent SLAs and have a direct impact on the business. These are the crown jewels of the business that need to be managed with utmost care to avoid loss of productivity, data and potential revenue. These are the major factors can have a direct impact on these applications such as the following:
The cloud transformation is now for real. Customers have a stated long-term goal of running a majority of their applications in the cloud. Gartner predicts that public cloud services to grow by 16.5% in 2016. The highest growth area is cloud infrastructure, which is projected to grow at 38.4% in 2016. Today’s CIOs understand that a clear cloud strategy is a critical component of managing their information technology needs.
While developers have adapted to the cloud and its benefits, traditional enterprise business critical applications are not very prevalent in the cloud. Until recently most of these applications had not even been virtualized. Just in the past two to three years a majority of these enterprise applications have been virtualized. What are the unique characteristics of these applications that need to be considered for cloudification? In this three part blog series, we will analyze the top ten BCA requirements and how different types of cloud infrastructures satisfy them. In part 1 we will look at the different types of cloud infrastructures and their characteristics. Continue reading →
SAP HANA is the preferred database for all future SAP applications. Columnar databases and the in memory capabilities of SAP HANA make it an excellent platform for all SAP applications. Virtualized SAP HANA (SAP HANA) provides significant advantages over Physical HANA implementations by providing flexibility and agility in operating a HANA environment
SAP HANA environments have a large memory footprint with the majority of data in memory. The changes to the memory are constantly being replicated to disk and there can be significant disk activity on the system in spurts. In addition when the system is restarted or there is any high availability event there is a massive requirement for data that needs to be quickly loaded into memory from disk. Due to these reasons, there is a requirement in HANA to have a highly performant IO subsystem. All Flash Storage can be a great asset if used as shared storage for virtualized HANA implementations as they can provide excellent IO performance. This paper looks at the benefits of using virtualization that is backed by All Flash storage for SAP HANA.
Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) is a real-world example of cloud computing that delivers databases and database applications through self-service portals without IT intervention. Providing multiple copies of relational database servers for testing and development is traditionally a complex operation that involves the combined efforts of multiple teams and the creation of custom scripts. Yet the ability to quickly provision instances of Oracle and SQL Server databases can reduce the time to create, test, deliver, and deploy new applications.
A study of DBAAS with VMware vRealize Automation (vRA), Tintri storage done by VLSS highlights the capabilities of these platforms to do this efficiently and in an automated manner. The DBaaS reference architecture is only useful if end-users can deploy a catalog of VMs under varying conditions and workloads. These test results highlight three accomplishments in the vRA DBaaS reference architecture with Tintri.
SAP provides a range of enterprise software applications and business solutions to manage and run the complete business of a company. These mission-critical systems require continuous availability.
A correctly architected and highly available solution can provide applications such as those from SAP with acceptable operational uptime by countering the impact of unplanned downtime. Although downtime can also be planned for maintenance and patching activities, the unplanned outages have the greatest effect on production uptime.
SAP on VMware Availability and Disaster Recovery Guide covers high-availability solutions of virtualized SAP solutions on VMware, to protect against unplanned downtime in the same data center, and disaster recovery (DR) for entire site failure. Unplanned downtime refers to an outage in system availability due to infrastructure or software failure—server, storage, network, software, or operating system (OS) crash, and so on—or an entire site disaster. SAP products and solutions provide mission-critical business processes that must be highly available even in the event of a site disaster.