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Why have a full SAP PI/PO regression test case is needed

Do you have a full set of regression test cases of your SAP PI/PO system and can run them when needed to ensure that nothing is broken.

This week I was talking with a potential customer about our testing tool and the newest feature where they did not need to install anything on the PI system. They did, unfortunately, have a too old version of one of the components to allow us to read the log messages. It was added with OSS 2437778.

It is the standard way out to add new features to patches or service packs to give customers there the features which are required. Most of all the time you want to be able to leverage the new functions in some scenarios to solve a business need.

With the way SAP is delivering the Java code is it cumulative patches. This mean that patch 3 contains updates from patch 2 plus some more changes. So you cannot just get the fix you want as you can with ABAP.

They are also linked with dependencies so if you upgrade one, some part will stop function because it is missing a dependent library. So most of the time you have to update quite a bit of component and you have no idea about how this will affect everything else. You can read the release notes, but it is difficult or close to impossible to predict how this will impact your system.

And to make matters even worse, you probably need to upgrade all components to the latest to ensure all dependencies are met.  

In a normal company it will take a long time to validate these things, so if you’re just adding a simple feature it is really a no go to do this. The business case is difficult to explain, we want this feature to do X, but it will cost a lot of testing. So you have to wait for the business to ask for a new feature and then that project would have to pay for the upgrade/patch.

That’s the reason why I want to have a full set of regression test cases that you can just run whenever there is any patch or an upgrade that you have to ensure that everything works as expected without involving people in the testing of the new features.

The price for an upgrade is a partial basis to get them to upgrade the system and then a part to test the component. The biggest cost is the tests that you need to perform to ensure that everything works as expected. It makes, therefore, sense that to be able to automate that part if it is possible.

With most test tools that take a long time to set up these the test cases and that’s why we’ve created a tool to enable you to set up these test cases fast.  We had a customer Anadarko Petroleum Corporation that could set up 300 test cases in just 3 weeks.

Since then we have optimized the process a lot making it a lot faster to set up test cases. So I would assume you will be able to set up test cases a lot faster than now.

The cost of running the test for the full system is close to zero, so you can run them daily to get information about how the system performs or if anything is broken.

So you can apply the latest support packs if you want to have an updated system with the latest features and fixes.

You can download Figaf IRT tool and use the tool for free upto 10 ICO’s to test on your own SAP PI/PO system. You can request a trial license to get more tests done. If you already have the patch mentioned then you don’t need to install anything on your system and in many cases use your own use for the testing.

 

Testing SAP PI/PO without installing anything on the PI server

With Figaf IRT we have been able to test your SAP PI/PO system for two years.

One of the big concerns of customers was that they needed to install our component on their SAP PI/PO system. We have tried to ensure that it cannot break anything and they can receive the code for it. I do understand the challenge in organizations.

That is the reason that new now have added a new feature that allows users to test only their SAP PI/PO interfaces without installing any code on the server. They just download our Jar application and start it on the local laptop for testing. Then add connection information on the PI server, and in most cases, you can use your existing SAP PI user for it.

You can try it out now at https://figaf.com/irt

It is free up to 10 ICOs/100 inbound messages used for testing. You can run it as many times as you like. There is also a host of other features for testing and improving the development of interfaces.

Requirements for testing

You must have JAVA 8 on your laptop to run the IRT application. And it must be able to start up the web application that is build in to it.

You need a patched system after October where the feature to read payloads from the log messages was released. See SAP note 2437778 

You user must have access to read in the message logs and possible setup the XI30 channel for running the test with.

You will need to have the interface to save both the inbound and outbound message (BI and AM) . You can configure this global or just for the specific ICO/Iflow See this blog on the logging. It is just the logging required not the staging.

Future development on this

We still have a few improvement that will be delivered over the next weeks.

  • The ability to look in the history instead of just from you start the recording. This will make it a lot faster to setup test cases because the system could see everything you have processed.
  • Option to add the standard SAP Logging modules on the channels to allow recording of messages after module. It will cost a little on the performance and storage requirements but for some scenarios it will make it easier to run
  • Support for other patterns than just Async.

I’m looking forward to hear you feedback on how this works in the real world.

IRT feature: Monitor SAP Cloud Platform Integration Content (CPI)

A few weeks ago we added an option to monitor your SAP PI/PO repository content, so you could see what was changed in any objects. And based on the changes you registered you could test the scenarios.

We have also enabled users to test SAP Cloud Integration so it made a lot of sense also to monitor the content so we could support full cycle development. So we can now monitor all changes to the content. So you can see what was changed in a script and what areas were changed in an iflow. The output may be a little technical but it will allow you to see that something was changed.

We also have the ticket content that allows you to register the changes that you are doing and ensuring that you are testing all of the changes that you are making. It is a way to ensure that enables you to document the changes in a better way than using Word documents for the information. You can then link your existing ticket/helpdesk system to the IRT tickets as an extra data source.

You can see a short demo here.

 

There is some features that we will improve in the comparison, so you can see the message mappings content and see the part that was changed. And also improve the comparison of scripts. It will come in a future release.

If you have other wishes to future development do let us know.

First I recommed you to try to install IRT and try it out. You can get started within 30 minutes. Watch the Cloud Platform Integration installation and configuration guide video .

 

Add IRT to your existing SAP test scripts in HPE UFT

We have been getting request on using Figaf IRT as a way to improve the testing of existing customers existing testing application. This will allow you to test both SAP PI/PO and SAP Cloud Platform Integration (CPI)  in the flows.

A few releases ago we released the new testing principle for Baseline testing. Baseline testing requires that you are sending the same messages into the system again, as the perfect companion to when you have existing test scripts in Solman or in this case HPE UFT. If you want to integrate with any tool then this guide provides a good way to start the integration.

In your existing HPE UFT, ALM or Worksoft solution can create a comparison and do validation of which messages are sent. There is an API to read the messages from the PI system, it would tough require a lot of coding to ensure that you got all the validations correct. We are really good a making test of the messages in an Integration system, so you can just focus on creating the validations of existing programs. It would be really beneficial for you to know what messages are changed and why.

The steps in the procedure are outlined in the video below. It will probably take you 10-15 minutes to add the IRT component to each script that you are running.  You need to run the script a few times to ensure that it works and you have configured IRT correct. The video covers how to set this up.

Support for you SAP PI/PO development process

I’m pretty thrilled about our latest development of the Figaf IRT tool for SAP Integration.

When I started doing XI 3.0 work I was really frustrated with the way things were documented. It was a really manual process that users needed to follow. The documentation was never updated. Now 14 years later I can see that we got a tool that can help in the cases. We can now help you really document what has changed automatically.

So a month ago I found that we could leverage the tools we had created for the IRT tool to support the full development lifecycle. Today we are releasing the first version of it. It is not perfect and there are some holes but it clearly shows which direction we can do with it. Hopefully, you will also be able to see the benefit of it.

The different steps in the process are the following:

  • Alerts are raised from a PI Message using standard alerting.
    • Create rules for how to handle alerts
  • Perform your development in Repository/NWDS
  • Create a ticket to with a link to the incident
    • Assign the changes to the ticket
    • You can see the differences I the mappings
  • The test is performed to ensure it works
    • Base on the Figaf IRT test tool that allows users to create test case fast based on i.e. production data

I have created a video to show what we are able to do with the tool.

We still have a few things to work with to with making it better and cover more of the development cycle, but it is always better with customer feedback. So if you have any things that would help in your process do let us know.

You can download the tool for free at https://figaf.com/irt