Working with Lifecycle Management

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Describe the lifecycle management process

What is Lifecycle Management?

As an administrator, you might need to transfer content between systems in your SAP Analytics Cloud landscape. For example, you want to set up and test stories and models in your development system and then promote them to your production system when they're ready.

Testing in the development tenant (left) and moving content to production tenant (right).

Even though SAP Analytics Cloud is a cloud solution, there's still a need to have multiple environments to take advantage of lifecycle management. At a minimum, you should have at least two tenants. One system to develop and test and a separate production system where users can do their work.

Having separate development and production tenants ensures that there is no need to use your production data sources for testing and development tasks, meaning the best performance possible for your users.

SAP Analytics Cloud landscape that includes a development and production tenant, each one linked the corresponding source system, in this example, S/4HANA.
It's best to have your source tenant and destination tenant on the same release version, as it's not possible to move content from a tenant that's on higher release to a tenant that's on a lower release version.

Additional Information

For more information on setting up your system landscape to use lifecycle management, go to: Lifecycle Management with SAP Analytics Cloud | SAP Help Portal.

Case Study: Promoting Content Using the Content Network

In the previous image, you can see a simple system landscape for SAP Analytics Cloud. For The Mock Company, you set up SAP Analytics Cloud development and production tenants and connect each one to the company's corresponding S/4HANA system.

Diagram showing a uploading content from a development system to the Content Network (left), then sharing where it is downloaded for use in the test tenant. (right)

You move content from the development tenant to the production tenant using the Content Network. From the Content Network, you can store and share exported packages with other systems in your landscape, as well as manage the content and sharing settings. In this video, we will explain the process.

Content Network

Using the Content Network, you can export content privately and share it with your other SAP Analytics Cloud tenants.

The Content Network is like a drive hosted on your data center. There is one Content Network hosted per data center, so if you want to export and import content between two tenants, then they have to be deployed and hosted on the same data center. If not, these two tenants won’t be able to see the same Content Network. By default, you can store up to 300 Mb of content in Content Network, but additional capacity can be purchased, if required.

Some of the advantages include:

  • Packages are hosted and managed in the cloud rather than on the client machine.
  • Files can be organized into folders, with security set at the folder level.
  • Processing occurs in the background so there is no need to wait for the import/export to complete.
  • There is no need to manually download/upload packages for lifecycle management.
Note
The transport of content using the File System is being deprecated. For this reason, only promoting content using the Content Network is covered in this course.

Samples, Partner Content, and Business Content Packages

SAP Analytics Cloud Content Network

The Content Network isn't just for promoting your own private content from one tenant to another, you can also use it to access samples, third-party business content, and SAP business content packages. You can import:

  • My Content: Any packages that have been privately shared with your SAP Analytics Cloud tenant from another tenant.
  • Samples: A collection of technical samples and templates that you can use to easily create your own layouts.
  • 3rd Party Business Content: End-to-end business scenarios for various industries and lines of business, created by SAP partners. This content can include models and stories and comes ready to run with sample data or live data connections. Some third-party content is paid content, but you can still open these packages in the Content Network to see the content description. If you decide you want to use this content, a link to the SAP App Center to purchase the content is provided.
  • SAP Business Content: Industry and line of business content created by SAP.

Use of the sample content and business content is optional, but these packages include business content such as predefined stories, dashboards and data models that are tailored to existing SAP data sources. You can connect the content to your own data and use it as a quick and easy starting point when developing your analytic scenarios.

Once developed, this content can be promoted to your production tenant for your users using the same lifecycle management process you use for your own content.

SAP Analytics Cloud with vertical menu open and Content Network button highlighted.

Additional Information

For more information on the packages available on the Content Network, you can visit:

Permissions

Required Permissions to Promote Content

To export and import content, you must have permissions to read, maintain, and share lifecycle data. The Admin and BI Admin standard application roles contain these permissions.

Lifecycle permissions with Read, Maintain, and Share selected.

Lifecycle Management in SAP Analytics Cloud

Lifecycle Management Process Steps

In order to transport content to your destination SAP Analytics Cloud system, there are several steps that need to be followed.

  1. Create users in the destination tenant
  2. Create or transport teams and roles
  3. Transport connections
  4. Transport remaining content
  5. Setup content security
  6. Update acquired data models with data
Steps 1-6. Illustrations for each of the 6 steps in the process.

Step 1: Create Users

As it is not possible to transport users from one SAP Analytics Cloud tenant to another, the first step in the process requires you to setup the users in the destination environment.

Step 2: Create or Transport Teams and Roles

Teams and roles should be setup in the destination system. Teams and roles can be created manually in the destination tenant or imported from the source tenant using the Content Network. A few things to keep in mind:

  • Team folders can't be transported, which is why it's best practice to use public folders to organize team-specific content.
  • Team assignment to roles is maintained after transport, so you won't have to set this up again in the destination tenant.
  • You can only transport custom roles from one tenant to another.
  • SAML attribute mapping defined for teams and roles can't be transported and must be setup in the destination tenant. This will be covered later in this course.

Step 3: Transport Connections

Connections can be transported from source to destination tenant, but you must manually update the connection definition so that the connection points to the data source you will use in the destination environment. For example, you may have to change your SAP HANA connection to point from your development SAP HANA instance to your production instance.

Note
Data import connections to an on-premise system requires the SAP Cloud Connector (SCC) and SAP Analytics Cloud Agent (SCA). SCC and SCA have to be installed and set up manually by an SAP Analytics Cloud administrator on a dedicated on-premise system. This new system is located inside your Local Area Network between your SAP Analytics Cloud tenant and your on-premise data sources.

Step 4: Transport Remaining Content

In this step, stories, analytical applications, models, and user created content can be transported.

There are a few things to keep in mind when moving acquired data models between systems:

  • Acquired models can contain public and/or private dimensions, so you need to make sure to transport all the dimensions used by the model. When creating the package, the system will automatically include the dependencies in the package.
  • Acquired models contain model structure and data, so you have to decide whether to include the data during transport. If you do not want to move models with development data into a production tenant, it's better to just move the model without its data.
  • Scheduled data import jobs are transported along with the model.
  • Dimension access controls are not transported. They must be setup again after transport.
  • Model data privacy settings and data security setup using roles are transported. However, in order for this to work, the roles must already exist in the destination environment.

For live models, the transport process is quite simple since live models don't contain any data. You'll just have to make sure that live connection used by the model is pointing to the correct data source in the destination tenant.

Step 5: Setup Content Security

All folder and object security from the source tenant has to be manually setup in the destination tenant. It's not possible to transport object sharing settings from one system to another.

Step 6: Update Acquired Data Models with Data

As mentioned earlier, acquired models contain data and you may not want to move the model with data into your destination environment. If you transported the model without data, then the last step of the lifecycle management process is to populate the model with data coming from the destination system data source. This process will require updating the dimension members definition and importing fact data into the model.

For information on importing data into a model, go to Import Data to Your Model | SAP Help Portal.

Additional Best Practices for Lifecycle Management

Things to Do

There are some things that you should do if you want to use lifecycle management effectively:

  1. Use multiple SAP Analytics Cloud tenants to use proper lifecycle management.
  2. Only create objects once and then transport them to other environments.
  3. Organize files into folders that include folder security options.

Things to Avoid

There are some things that you should avoid if you want to use lifecycle management effectively:

1. Do not use Copy or Save as to create new objects. This creates a new object with a new ID. Objects relate to other objects by ID, as you can see in the following image. For this reason, it is not possible to manage the lifecycle of different objects independently of each other within the same service.

In the following diagram, you can see an example of a copied story and model. The copied story:

  • Still point to the original model (purple line in diagram) instead of the copied model.
  • Loses its dependencies, as all comments are still associated to the original story ID.
  • Has a new ID, so user browser-based bookmarks will still point to original story as it relates to the story ID.

    To point a copied story to a copied model requires considerable manual effort.

Diagram showing how the different objects in SAP Analytics Cloud relate to each other using the various IDs. Bookmarks, Comments related to a specific story ID, so copying the story will break these links. The copied story also links to the original model ID.

2. Do not create objects with a name that refers to its current environment, for example use Finance instead of Dev Finance. This applies to all object types: folders, stories, teams, roles, models, connections, and so on.

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