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Balance Credibility and Costs

Intelligent Combination of Disaster-Resilient Solutions and Development Environments Drives Business Innovation

by Andrea Voigt and Paul Mantey | SAPinsider, Volume 16, Issue 2

April 1, 2015

Many companies implement SAP Business Suite or SAP Business Warehouse powered by SAP HANA to manage business-critical processes that require high performance and availability. Such implementations require a comprehensive disaster recovery strategy based on serious risk assessment and business impact analysis. Learn how you can address the 2 key inhibitors of disaster recovery implementations — cost and credibility — with an approach that combines disaster-resilient solutions with your SAP HANA implementation.


Since its introduction, SAP HANA has evolved from a side-by-side analytics and reporting tool to become the core of successful enterprises around the globe. As business executives continue to exploit the competitive advantages that in-memory computing delivers, availability of the platform becomes essential.

Many companies implement SAP Business Suite or SAP Business Warehouse (SAP BW) powered by SAP HANA to manage business-critical processes that require high performance and availability — trading with perishable goods, for instance. Such implementations need close collaboration between IT and the business to define a disaster recovery strategy based on serious risk assessment and business impact analysis. When it comes to putting that strategy into practice, IT departments first need to balance two major factors:

  • Credibility — Assure business owners that IT is capable of implementing and executing a service that guarantees continuation of essential business processes during disaster events.
  • Costs — Design the most effective approach toward high system availability, including the profitable use of failover site systems.

High-availability and disaster-resilient solutions are not “off-the-shelf” commodities. Beyond redundant components, they require orchestration, automation, and communication systems that ultimately culminate in multisite implementations. As such, they must be tailored for each individual organization and even for each individual system within a comprehensive IT landscape. To accomplish this, IT often turns to external partners to provide the appropriate technology and to help choose, plan, and implement the right approach.

Fujitsu and NetApp’s unique solutions and capabilities ensure appropriate availability for SAP HANA implementations while keeping efficiency in mind. Let’s take a closer look at some of these solutions.

Avoid Unnecessary Downtime

While many companies already have development systems that are secured by solid components within server and storage systems, they often experience downtimes from several hours to even several days. By contrast, a productive SAP Business Suite powered by SAP HANA system, which is used to manage mission-critical processes, generally has a maximum downtime of a few minutes or less. The key differentiator is implementing a remotely located failover system that ensures business process continuity without incurring unacceptable data loss or downtime.

Fujitsu PRIMEFLEX Solutions

Fujitsu and NetApp jointly provide the required expertise and pre-tested solutions that ensure the adequate level of availability for each organization, each SAP HANA system, or each application server. With proper setup and operational processes, customers can leverage our technology to ensure that failover systems are effectively used during normal operations, yet be prepared to immediately take over and continue essential business processes in the case of a disaster.

Fujitsu PRIMEFLEX for SAP HANA is a pre-defined and pre-tested infrastructure solution based on SAP-certified components that enables simplified, fast, and secure implementation and operation of the SAP HANA platform. This solution can be seamlessly integrated with Fujitsu PRIMEFLEX for SAP landscapes, which provides a unique operational concept for effectively running SAP applications and databases in businesses of all sizes and in all types of industries. The end-to-end virtualization of servers, storage, networks, and application services creates a straightforward, flexible environment for managing resources and workloads. By properly orchestrating and automating failover processes, Fujitsu’s FlexFrame Orchestrator software, a core component of PRIMEFLEX for SAP landscapes, provides the basis for effective high availability and disaster recovery (DR) (see Figure 1). In fact, the DR process does not consist of special procedures. It contains only typical day-to-day operations, such as starting an SAP system using infrastructure resources.

PRIMEFLEX for SAP HANA and PRIMEFLEX for SAP landscapes are pre-configured and pre-tested combinations of Fujitsu Server PRIMERGY systems, NetApp FAS storage, and network connectivity and software. This optimized and ready-to-run approach rounded off by industrialized services significantly reduces deployment time, providing a fast track to business value.

Based on PRIMEFLEX for SAP landscapes, the same simple DR process is applied for multiple productive SAP HANA systems, which are automatically restarted after a system breakdown according to their priority.  


Figure 1 — Example of a disaster-resilient setup of a productive SAP HANA system


NetApp FlexClone Environments

With FlexClone, NetApp provides a near real-time, zero-space technology for creating SAP system copies that enables IT organizations to deliver significant business impact. Application development teams can create as many full production copy development environments as they want, and can refresh those environments to reflect the current production state in less time than it takes to get a cup of coffee. Organizations implementing SAP environments on top of this high-performance, agile development environment typically see implementation times reduced by 20%-30%, with fewer defects and integration problems incurred during quality assurance (QA) testing. For example, a leading global cosmetic company reported a 70% reduction in project delivery time and a 425% increase in the number of IT projects delivered.

This high-performance application development environment carries an additional benefit: IT is able to constantly test and operate in the DR environment in support of developing and delivering new features and enhancements to the business. Some clients have become profitably creative using these DR systems in a deployment similar to the configuration shown in Figure 1; they have identified and corrected data errors that are corrupting data warehouses or causing key processes to fail.

Always Up and Running

By deploying SAP HANA with Fujitsu PRIMEFLEX solutions, customers can address the two key inhibitors of DR implementations: cost and credibility. Effectively using DR systems as flexible application development environments enables IT organizations to deliver a return on investment far in excess of the hurdle rates expected by the business. Delivering new features and functions ahead of schedule, with fewer defects and smoother rollouts, ensures that the business will look confidently to IT to keep the business running, even during the most difficult times.

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Andrea Voigt
Andrea Voigt

Senior Product Marketing Manager
Global Marketing Services and Solutions

Paul Mantay
Paul Mantey

Global Technology Lead, Fujitsu

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