Exploring SAP Activate for 3-System Landscape

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Illustrate SAP Activate for SAP S/4HANA Cloud 3-System Landscape

Activate Cloud 3-System Landscape

Content Lifecycle Use cases – How Customers Consume Best Practice Content

Use CaseDescriptionWhenUser InteractionActivation Mode
New Implementation ProjectInitial implementationAny timeOn user demand e.g. phase change, trigger deploy from CBC and then Release Transports in S/4Initial activation based on customer scoping decision
Customizing Change ProjectCustomizing projectSSCUI
UpdatesContent correctionsEvery two weeksFor decoupled period manual customer driven 
UpgradesContinuous content Improvement and adaptationMajor release every six monthsDelta activation of CBC scoped BC Sets need to deployed to S/4 by customer
 Additional scope items, countries, and organization structure enhancementOn user demand

SAP S/4HANA Cloud Upgrade Behavior:

With the release of the new 3-system landscape architecture, we are decoupling the software and content lifecycle. Here are the scenarios for both the software and content upgrades.

Software Upgrade:

  • Governed by SAP
  • 2 releases per year
  • Possible regression testing by customer in 3 weeks time before D/P system upgrade
  • Customizing on old version still possible i.e. no transport lock

Content Upgrade:

  • Fully owned and governed by the customer/partner
  • Required after software upgrade at customer`s discretion, but must be completed prior to next major software upgrade
  • Adaptation of mandatory settings required by customer
  • Possible regression testing to be planned by customer

This new upgrade behavior has several benefits. For instance, it…

  • Minimizes disruption including zero-downtime procedure
  • Reduces complexity of the upgrade process
  • Provides customers sufficient flexibility and time to adopt and adjust desired business processes

Updates and Upgrades:

  • Hotfix collections generally scheduled on a two week period and are deployed to all customer systems over the weekend during standard downtimes in all systems.
  • Upgrades are scheduled to start with Test System, followed by Development and Production System after 3 weeks.
  • Software and Content lifecycle are maintained separately by SAP and customer/partner.
  • All customer systems are on the same release and hotfix package.
  • Service marketplace notes are not individually applied. They must be part of a hotfix. 
  • SLA (Service Level Agreement) for cloud services can be found here: http://go.sap.com/about/agreements/cloud-services.html?&search=service%20level%20agreement.
  • SAP notifies via email, release upgrade schedule to each customer, approximately 6 weeks in advance.
  • Details on the upgrade schedule and patching schedule can be found here:https://www.sap.com/products/s4hana-erp/get-started.html?pdf-asset=867629d8-a27c-0010-82c7-eda71af511fa&page=1.
  • See the SAP Trust Center Cloud Service Status here: https://www.sap.com/about/trust-center/cloud-service-status.html#sap-s-4hana-cloud.

Let us understand how SAP S/4HANA cloud behaves post an upgrade.

Note: this is the current state of planning and may be changed by SAP at any time without notice


2-system landscape 2SL with implementation process Q2P requires that you configure and test in Quality System, Transport to Production. The general process is as follows:

  • Customer defines scope to be implemented in CBC.
  • Customer deploys related business configuration to Quality system.
  • Customer fine-tunes Best Practice Configuration and tests this in Quality system
  • After positive test, customer releases transport of business configuration to Production system.


3-system landscape 3SL with implementation process Development to Production (D2P) requires that you configure in Development, transport to and test in Test, and then transport to Production. In this landscape there is a clear separation between configuration/Development & Test. The general process is as follows:

  • Customer defines scope to be implemented in CBC.
  • Customer deploys related business configuration to Development system.
  • Customer fine-tunes Best Practice Configuration (and tests this) in Development system Client 100 and uses Client 80 for development.
  • Customer then transports to and tests in Test system. Does additional current settings related changes if needed.
  • After positive test, customer forwards the transport of business configuration to Production system. Does additional current settings related changes if needed.

Transport management is the mechanism where configuration is transported from the Development System to the Test System and forwarded to the Production System.

  • Multiple transports can be opened.
  • Configuration notes are logged and can be referenced for each transport.
  • The Test System and Production System should be kept synchronized using frequent (i.e. weekly) transport sprints.

SAP Activate Implementation Resources:

SAP Activate Community (https://community.sap.com/topics/activate) allows you to learn from SAP experts on various topics, gain key insights, and stay up-to-date on the latest releases. In the community, you can consume blogs from our experts on various SAP Activate topics, attend or listen to recorded webinars & events outlining the key topics to help organizations during project phases. You will also be able to interact and collaborate with users regarding content, questions, and updates.

SAP Best Practices Explorer (https://rapid.sap.com/bp/) powers your project with ready to run business processes and gets updated with every new SAP S/4HANA Cloud release. Use the SAP Best Practice Explorer to view content including:

  • Scope-item fact sheets – scope description of each scope item
  • Process diagrams – graphical BPML process diagram with roles
  • Test scripts – step by step process documentation with data
  • Links to Cloud Integration Automation service

SAP Activate Roadmap Viewer (https://go.support.sap.com/roadmapviewer/) provides the same task and accelerator guidance as the SAP Cloud ALM but does not include the many integrated time saving features. It is an SAP Fiori application to help you to guide your SAP S/4HANA implementation project, containing time-phased instructions to help execute tasks throughout the implementation journey. It also offers you a large number of accelerators to help you run your project as efficient as possible. Content is continuously updated to provide current and accurate instruction to help guide you through the whole SAP S/4HANA Lifecycle.

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