How to start from scratch for using SAP PI/PO

If you just purchased SAP PI/PO there is a lot of things to consider. This post will help you in the process of figuring out what is interesting.

The thing is you don’t know too much but it will have the greatest impact on what is set up. So it would be a good idea to have an architecture workshop where you will get all the insight into how you can create a solution that matches what you want to achieve. So it is an ideal time to get help.

I have created a mindmap video where I cover some of the most important things about the process. Watch the video below.

Architeture

A big thing is to get the architecture to match what you want in your organization. There a lot of things to consider like naming conventions and how to create interfaces. This should you would hopefully get a few sample interfaces that show how the things would look and how to monitor them. You should also consider how to make documents required for it both mapping documents if required and documentation.

It may be a good idea to have a secondary consultant to help you in the process that is on your side because you don’t know as much about what you can expect.

 

Testing

Testing is one of the important things in the process. If you “just” replace middle where you have the ability to get input and output document. If you use the Figaf IRT for SAP PI/PO testing then you will be able to perform the tests to verify that messages look identical. This way you can save some time for testing the application together with business experts.

If are doing a greenfield implementation of SAP S/4 ERP then you will have to change the interfaces on both sides. You will still have to setup testing so you can ensure that the process works correctly even when you have to apply support packs.

Migration

A good place to start is also my migration guide. It is much the same things, except that you have more free hands with what you want to do and the changes that you must make.

There are some of the things here that can be applied to the list of attributes to collect from each interface. You can find it in the slides. If you can get the information it may be a lot easier for a partner to do a good estimation of the project. You may add data like a number of fields in each interface to give better information about required mapping size maybe group it in to bucket like 1-20 , 20-100, 100+ fields that need to be mapped.

Cloud world

In this blog, we have not been covering any of the SAP platforms that may be interesting and save some time on integration. There is the SAP Cloud Platform Integration (CPI aka HCI) which is a solution that is quite simply to PI but cloud-based and more flexible. It contains a lot of prebuild content that will speed up and integration, so it may be used in some scenarios. You may also be able to run this type of interfaces on your new SAP PO system. For some integrations, it may be beneficial to use because of the flexibility and the availability of adapters.

Other advice:

I ask the question what people would like to have known before they started on the SAP PI/PO project a long time ago and I did get some interesting answers that may be quite in line with what you are looking for. There was a lot of ideas about making better guides for what should be implemented. You can read all suggestion here.

 

Good luck on your new platform. I promise it will be an adventure. 

Free Integration development Model for Enterprise Integration

I have been obsessed with finding better ways to make integrations better on. I have been looking at different ways to make the integration better on. It has not been easy and I have created multiple models to capture the most important part of it.

There is a lot of project models out there that help in all phases of a project. They do not take integration specific questions into account. For obvious reasons. It is still something that should be addressed by the people making the plans and developing any integrations.

It is an iterative process because you will need to learn what works and what should be changed. It will mostly be the places where your pattern is different than what you have created earlier. It is a good idea in the design phase the identify the pattern that is used for the integration.

In this iteration, i made it a bit more generic. To support the change in processing that allows users to consider other platforms that just SAP PI/PO. This is an important part of the development because you now have many options to deliver the same integration. Or there could be tools that are better suited to that specific integration.

You can get the 6D Enterprise Integration model free here.

Christmas release for IRT your SAP PI/PO testing solution

This month release has been a long way in the process. It is adding some really cool features that have been requested by customers. Luckily we had a headstart on some of them because we could see areas for improving the application. The focus has been on productivity to make the system faster with setting up test cases and running recordings.

Since most SAP PI/PO systems run on clustered environments it is quite important to fully utilize it and make sure that other nodes are not affecting the result. We have added some functionality to let the different nodes share workload among each other. We have split the receiving of messages and comparison to different threads making the performance even better.

We have not had clients wanting us to work with sender agreements and receiver agreements on the single stack yet. So it has not been a priority. Now we got some customers using it so we had to make it work. We found that the web service for downloading ICO has been updated because the old did not contain messages with receiver determinations.

You just select the ICO you want to test and the system would automatically add modules for all receiver channels that matched the ICO.

The last is the ability to perform mappings between system information between the system you fetch data from and where you will replay it. Now if there are any challenges with the mapping you will get a nice UI that makes it easier to perform the mapping directly from the testing result that is missing information.

It is also possible to make mappings of interface names. So if you are doing an interface/namespace renaming you will be able to set up the mapping. That way it will be easier to verify that those instances work.

We expect this to be the last release this year, though there may come a few bug fixes. Next year we have some really cool features coming up.

Then there was a bunch of different bug fixes. We started to see this when working on solving customer support cases.

You can read more about Irt at https://figaf.com/irt

Technical webinar about Figaf’s IRT test tool for SAP PI/PO

During this week I have held a couple of Webinars about our test tool IRT and since it is the end of the year, I thought it was time to geek out. Therefore, I created the webinar just to show how cool I think the solution is. But I didn’t want to exclude those of you who didn’t attend the webinars so I have decided to share a version of the webinar to everyone interested. If you did attend the webinar and just want a second look you are more than welcome.  

In the video I will be sharing some of the cool features that we have been working on this year, to make testing SAP PI/PO much easier to do.

Some of the features that we have added is an easy way to test

  • Sync/async – Async/Sync bridges
  • Test with big XML messages
  • Configuration Wizard
  • JSON and Binary comparison
  • Clone recording requests to request more of the same message
  • System mapping between systems and interfaces between systems
  • Change Tracking Tool added to system
  • Improvements for templates for test cases

I hope you will enjoy the video it is packed with content about how Figaf Integration Regression Tool enables you to test your SAP PI/PO interfaces faster. The video is rather long so get a cup of coffee while watching or see it over a couple of times.

Remember that you can request a 30 day free trial at https://figaf.com/tools/integration-regression-tool/   

Marketing vs. Real life – Five minute photobook

Surely, I can click on a webshop and purchase a photo book in just 5 minutes but then I also need to select pictures and maybe even add some text to the pictures. This is not a 5 minutes task that’s for sure. Depending how much effort you want to put into this it can take several hours, at the moment I have spent 5 hours on my photo calendar.

So why am I raising this topic? Well, I must come clean and admit that I’m kinda doing the same thing – and it bugs me.

At Figaf we have our testing tool IRT and I can set up a test in our own system in just around 5 minutes maybe even shorter. But this is not a real-life scenario when you apply our test tool it will take you a lot longer than 5 minutes.

It can be challenging not to go down the road where you make advertises that states you can make complex testing in just 5 minutes. I have tried to be more realistic and made a backpack where it says “test your full SAP PI/PRO system in days, not months”.

I do believe that this a valid assumption and at Figaf we want to be on the same side and make sure the testing is set-up correctly. But I’m also aware that in some cases it will take longer it could be some weeks and not days.

So how do you see this marketing vs. real life?

Is it okay to say, “set-up a test in 5-minutes” because I can actually show you it can be done or is that a no-go in your opinion?