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/blog HVR SAP AppConnect

by EdwinCommandeur

HVR stands for High Volume Replication. The technology is renowned for helping enterprise customers implement real-time data integration between database sources and targets in complex heterogeneous environments. In this market, HVR often supports SAP ERP systems as a source like SAP ECC and S/4HANA. The HVR supports these customers with low-impact, log-based Change Data Capture (CDC) for several relational database types, including Oracle, SQL Server, DB2, and SAP HANA (HANA).

The ability to take changes from various databases’ transaction logs has the lowest possible impact on the SAP application because changes are read asynchronously from the transaction log and not from the database or application.

But even if changes are not captured from the database or application, HVR’s log-based CDC currently requires direct database access to perform an initial load and minimal administration to enable the capture processes. Some organizations dislike this kind of direct database connection because it doesn’t fit their policy or crosses SAP’s database license restrictions, as we have seen with runtime licenses.

To address these concerns and limitations, HVR developed SAP AppConnect. With this new feature, table selection (enroll) and refresh (initial load), which traditionally require direct access to the database, are handled through SAP’s Netweaver application layer. As a result, a direct connection to the database is no longer required, and customers can still take advantage of log-based CDC.

HVR AppConnect consists of two components.

The first is on the HVR side, enabling the HVR technology to communicate with the SAP application using the RFC (Remote Function Protocol). This connection can be made from the HVR Capture Agent or the HVR Hub. SAP’s RFC libraries must be installed wherever HVR is connected. The connection to the SAP source can then be configured like any other connection in the HVR Hub, as displayed in Figure 2. Note that the user will be an SAP (background) user.

The second component of AppConnect resides on the SAP source system and is offered through SAP transports (*.kbr). Customers can upload, check, and activate these transports through the standard SAP transport procedures. The transport will generate all the ABAP functions in the HVR namespace (/HVR/) in SAP. Since it does not connect directly to the database, AppConnect doesn’t require a specific HVR database user or schema.

The architecture of HVR SAP AppConnect

After the location has been set up, operations are identical for HVR users to other (SAP) sources and targets. In addition, HVR’s features like Refresh, Compare, and Unpack (the ability to decode cluster, pool, and long text data) work with connections through AppConnect as they do with direct connections.

The most important part, capturing changes from the database log files, which leverages HVR’s proprietary log parsing capabilities for Oracle and HANA, has remained unchanged.

Housekeeping queries around log reading will go through AppConnect and the SAP application layer. The log files can be online redo log files on the source machine, log files on a physical standby configuration, and/or backup/archived log files that reside on the source environment or a remote location. In short, HVR can still process changes with the lowest possible latency and impact on the SAP source system.

HVR SAP AppConnect supports SAP applications with SAP ABAP platform 7.4 and higher, equating to SAP ERP 6 (EHP7) up to S/4HANA 2020 from an application perspective. For the (SAP) database platform, HVR SAP AppConnect currently only supports SAP HANA and Oracle. Additional database platforms like MSSQL and SAP ASE (Sybase) are being considered.

HVR SAP AppConnect enables customers to perform HVR log-based CDC replication within the common license restrictions regarding databases managed by SAP applications such as the SAP HANA runtime license.

Check out the SAP Data Replication solutions page for more information and resources about HVR’s advanced SAP capabilities.

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