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Networking… the Host file

well, let’s just say that networking is often the bane of my existence. It usually happens once every couple of months. It being some random thing that makes one or more of my systems start behaving in a strange way. Well, just recently, it hit me again. one of my many machines suddenly couldn’t connect to my sap systems, it couldn’t connect to my JaveLLin Solutions website, but everything else was fine. I fumbled about playing with adapter settings, checking boxes, unchecking boxes, restarting my machine and on and on… All the while trying not to pull my own hair out.
finally, I took a look at the host file:
\windows\system32\drivers\etc\host
Well, for some odd reason, my SAP address and my javellinsolutions address were both pointing to some random IP address.
It says the file hasn’t been changed in 3 years… but I find that hard to believe, since this system was working fine last week.
Strange… anyway, be on the lookout if anything strange like this happens to you.
Thanks for reading,

HANA – Experience so far

Well, in my continuing adventures with HANA, I’ve found some interesting things. If you don’t follow me regularly, you might not remember that I built an EHP7 box, on top of a HANA database. Well, I’m sure my hardware is part of the issue, but so far, I’ve found that my HANA box is unstable, to put it bluntly. Now, I’m only running on 64GB of RAM, so this might have something to do with my issues, but what I’ve found is that I can use the box for a couple hours, and then suddenly I start getting short dumps all over the place. The only solution is restarting the box. Now I understand this is a new technology, and I’m running on very limited hardware, but for the amount of data that I’m accessing, and the number of transactions I”m running, you’d really think that 64GB should be sufficient for my development needs.
The basis guy that installed it for me, is looking into it. But so far it seems that my options are bigger hardware, upgrading the Suse OS (which isn’t free) and then upgrading HANA with more patches. Well, I’m on the verge of having to invest money the software behind my HANA box, so updating my brand new hardware isn’t really an option. I guess, the next round will be to see what happens with some later Suse patches and then HANA updates.
On the software side, it’s identical to everything I’ve seen in the Oracle DB setup. I haven’t seen any massive performance improvements, or any new functionality. I guess I’ll have to wait and see what the new Logistics can offer, and of course, I’ll be very curious to see if anything was done for service. 🙂 but that will probably have to wait until my S/4 box gets built.
Thanks for reading (and if you have any suggestions to improve my HANA box, please let me know).

MNSUG – Don’t forget

Tomorrow is the Minnesota ASUG, being held in Minneapolis. I know there is a lot of SAP in MN, so I hope you are planning to attend. I’m sure there will be some great information, and at least one great vendor to talk to 🙂
Hope to see you there.
thanks for reading,

ABAP – the cost of an inner join

Well, I’m a self taught ABAP’er, so this might be obvious to many of you out there. But today, I found out just how painful an inner join statement can be. I was doing some code to extract deliveries for a group of sales order. So, I put together a select statement using inner join of LIKP and LIPS. You would think this is nothing too major. When, I executed it, and it ran for a couple minutes (this was entering about 300 sales order line items). The total volume in both LIKP and LIPS was under 10,000 records. So, obviously, this seemed poor, to say the least.
So, I tried the first trick of adding an index to LIPS for the VBELV & POSNV fields I was using to link the sales order. No change.
Then, I decided to break up the statement into separate reads (putting the values into internal tables). Suddenly, the time from 143 seconds, down to about 2 seconds. Incredible.
Now, to my programmer friends, is this a case that the inner join can’t take advantage of an index? or are inner joins really that costly in ABAP. Regardless, I have a new initiative in my code, to start checking every inner join, and replace it with multiple reads of a single table. If this performance is at all indicative, well, then I can make some big improvements in my code 🙂
Thanks for reading,

HANA – coming soon everywhere

Well, I recently heard a rumor that I’m pretty confident is true that by 2017, everyone running SAP will have to get rid of their Oracle DB. They can switch to HANA or some other DB, but the emphasis is on HANA. This means a lot to people like me… and when I say people like me, I mean consultants, app developers, etc. Because they means we all need to start understanding HANA, sooner rather than later. If companies are going to be forced to use HANA, it will be vitally important for us to understand how it differs, and how it is the same.
Now, we all have heard the hype… HANA is simple, HANA is fast, HANA is the future. Well, that’s great, but from a configuration standpoint, from a reporting standpoint, from a development standpoint, what does it all mean? I mentioned in my post yesterday, that I’ve just started playing around in an EHP7 HANA system. So far, I don’t see any differences in my world. The hard thing to know for sure is if there is new stuff I just don’t know about, or is not every area really changing?
How can we know for sure? I guess we have to start playing. Unfortunately, the road to HANA is paved with gold bricks… being paid for by anyone that wants a system to use or play in. So the expenditure is not small, and I’m sure the path is long. But as I start to figure things out, I’ll try to pass along what I find to you. Maybe my small snippets will be able to help speed you along on the journey to HANA that we all will soon be undertaking 🙂
Thanks for reading,

Beware iOS Updates for you Apps

Well, after spending about a day and a half trying to figure out what is wrong with my new FSE app, turns out it had everything to do with upgrading to the new iOS 9.0.2. The problem was that I was testing in my new Hana box, to make sure the app worked in that system. Like any good scientist will tell you, don’t go changing multiple variables at the same time… well, I didn’t even think about the iOS version. Silly me, I thought it would work the same regardless. Now I know better.
So, if you have app, be sure to test it each time the OS upgrades. Subtle things can make a huge difference.
Thanks for reading,

Focus on EAM – Top 10 Ways to Squeeze More Value from Your SAP EAM

This was the title of a webinar I listened in on yesterday. In general, it wasn’t bad. A lot of the same stuff I’ve been preaching to clients for years, but still good to hear that other people are on the same page. They gave a bunch of different little things, like setup your variants, use catalogs, use FIORI, stuff like that. They did talk a bit that SAP is still doing enhancements for PM. Keep in mind, EAM loosely includes service, but form the presentation yesterday, it was pretty obvious that they focus on plant maintenance.

if you are an ASUG member, you might be able to catch the full presentation here:
The recording and slides are now available.

Online Playback: http://event.on24.com/wcc/r/1047397/5D7BDD1AEC0C355DA1B81165E91C9694
Webcast Materials on ASUG.com: https://www.asug.com/discussions/docs/DOC-42462

I can’t say I learned anything in particular except that part scheduling is a problem for everyone, and no one seems to have a solution for it. And master data is key 🙂
Thanks for reading,

Web Dynpro – InteractiveForm Element

Yesterday i talked a little about the design change I needed to use in order to display my PDF output of a sapscript/smartform from SAP. Well, today I took the next step of testing my changes in my newer systems (EHP7 this time). Well, I found some rather interesting differences. For the purposes of Renovation, I’m going to leave it as it is, but these are some fun things to know.
In my ECC 6.0 system, I added the InteractiveForm Element. If I didn’t enable the element, it would just popup the download button and present me an empty window. No big deal, it was easy enough to work with.
When I did the same thing in EHP7, it now shows the form in the window, and allows me to scroll, and even gives me the minimum buttons to save and zoom in. This is much nicer.
Now, something to keep in mind. If you enable the element, it will attempt to use Adobe Reader for the browser. This is fine as long as you aren’t using the new Edge Browser. Since Adobe Reader can’t work in it, it will just give you an error and not show your form. For me, to keep it as universal as possible, I’m NOT enabling the element, and it seems to work just fine for all the browsers.
There’s your development tidbit for the day… thanks for reading,

ABAP – Spool to PDF in Web Dynpro

Like so often happens, I solve an issue once, only to have things change on me, so I need to go back and revisit. Well, in my Renovation application, one of the cool things I do is allow the user to look at any printouts that happened for the document with a simple click, and then it should popup on the browser. Well, recently when I started testing, I found that the PDF wasn’t displaying properly anymore. Just goes to show, things change, so keep testing 🙂
Well, originally, my design used a FileDownload element to kick off the display. AFter some digging, I found that now I need to use Interactive_Form element. While I’m not sure if FileDownload no longer can do it, or if I just needed to do some extra steps, but using the interactive form element, it is working. It required a little more work, since you can’t launch an interactive form from a table, but doing this gets it to popup and download on the computer instantly. It’s pretty slick.
Anyway, if you have a similar requirement, let me know and I can give you more details. But the general idea is using the spool to pdf (you can find this all over the internet). The less obvious part was getting it to render again on the screen.
Thanks for reading,

Carolina ASUG – Recap

Well, it was interesting going back to a regional ASUG. This is the first small show I’ve done since Mike Golden and I parted ways. So it was kind of like starting over from the beginning.
IMG_3040
As you can see, the booth is going back to old days of our very first trade show. Strangely, I wasn’t that far out place. It was still good to get an idea of exactly what I need before my next show.

IMG_3045
But it was fun to see our name up there again, and be able to give a quick talk about JaveLLin. Now, like all of my shows, no one jumped right up and said “I need that tomorrow, how much???” But the show was still good. We were at the Nascar racetrack in Charlotte, and i was able to connect with some vendors who are right in my backyard. And happily, they were very interested in helping a local small business. So I got some great pointers, and in general, it was a good show.

Now I can’t wait to bring my buddy Jeff to the MN show so I can continue to improve my trade show skills 🙂
Thanks for reading,