Complicated SAP architectures demand centralized, end-to-end management
As enterprise IT infrastructures have scaled up in complexity to deliver more services, and create more value, optimizing their performance and availability has become a correspondingly higher challenge.
Delivering the full potential of the infrastructure will typically mean finding a way to reduce that complexity. To accomplish this, organizations are turning to centralized management solutions that govern multiple domains, instead of relying solely on domain-specific management tools. Given such solutions, it then becomes much simpler and faster to ensure the infrastructure is, in fact, hitting performance targets and fulfilling business goals.
Consider, for instance, the specific case of SAP's enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. This is a complex package, which is often implemented in a custom way that spans many systems and resource pools, and which involves many dependencies.
While SAP comes with its own management solutions, they are, necessarily, specific to SAP; they don't address the larger infrastructural context in which SAP lives and breathes. Should a particular system involved in the SAP infrastructure fail, for instance, key application performance could easily be compromised, or could even fail completely. This could, in turn, generate a substantial negative business impact, reflected in the many business services that are dependent on SAP applications to work properly themselves.
IBM Tivoli offers enhanced visibility, control, and automation for any SAP deployment
“Tivoli Workload Scheduler for Applications can both track SAP workloads in real time and take automated action, based on predefined business policies, if something goes wrong. The effect is that the total SAP infrastructure is more resilient — "self-healing" — and SAP-driven services generate more value.”
Ideally, organizations would be able to pursue end-to-end SAP infrastructure management in a way that:
This, in fact, is exactly the strength of IBM's Tivoli service management suite for SAP: to pursue all of those goals via a single, elegant management layer that improves business value in SAP infrastructures by enhanced visibility, control, and automation.
What does IBM mean by that? Through visibility, organizations can literally see — in quantified metrics — how well (or how badly) the infrastructure is pursuing its business strategies and delivering IT services. Through control, organizations can make the specific adjustments needed to improve matters (based on insight gained via visibility). And through automation, they can increase agility and performance even more by industrializing (or automating) everyday tasks. This has the effect of minimizing the resources needed to carry out the tasks, while also accelerating their execution and making them far more consistent from iteration to iteration.
For a great example of just what IBM Tivoli has to offer the specific realm of SAP infrastructures, consider IBM Tivoli Workload Scheduler for Applications (TWS for Applications). This management solution falls neatly under the automation heading; it can help automate how SAP workloads are fulfilled in IT in a way that complements SAP's existing management methodology and tools. TWS for Applications includes many capabilities that can verify that SAP workloads run properly, that emerging problems are addressed quickly, and that all the many business services that depend on SAP will thus continue to hit their own targets.
Complete control of SAP workload execution — even given unexpected problems
How does this happen? Essentially, TWS for Applications can both track SAP workloads in real time and take automated action, based on predefined business policies, if something goes wrong. The effect is that the total SAP infrastructure is more resilient — "self-healing" — and SAP-driven services generate more value.
The solution's failover capabilities reflect this idea rather well. Consider that all components in the SAP infrastructure report to the master node. If that master were to fail, that would be a failure that SAP's own management capabilities, working alone, wouldn't be able to resolve.
Fortunately, TWS for Applications can resolve it, by allowing IT managers to create a backup (failover) master. If the primary master fails, TWS for Applications will detect that, then engage the backup, and transfer operational responsibilities to it logically in the architecture. The same capability applies to domain managers as well.
And because none of this process involves relational database management mirroring, a database analyst isn't required to make any of it happen. TWS for Applications thus accelerates service restoration considerably, bringing back key SAP applications automatically despite a machine failure or network outage that might otherwise have been devastating.
Another compelling feature it provides is resource throttling, to detect jobs that are consuming resources at an unacceptable level and throttle that consumption back. Add that to load-balancing, to prevent one segment of the infrastructure from being unduly burdened, and you can see how over time, SAP will perform in a more fluid, predictable way.
And because workload performance is no place for unauthorized control, TWS for Applications provides granular security and job capture, to specify in fine detail how jobs should be defined, edited, executed, and monitored over time.
Organizations that have made the fortunate investment in an IBM System z mainframe can also deploy TWS for Applications on it, and thus leverage it as a centralized platform of SAP management. TWS running on a System z can govern SAP workloads spanning multiple business domains and IT architectures — including distributed architectures running completely different operating systems and hardware from a System z — for exceptionally comprehensive, end-to-end oversight.
Finally, consider the fact that the Tivoli solution can be used to achieve all of this for multiple SAP instances — not just one. As the number of SAP instances multiplies, so, too, will the business value generated by TWS for Applications.
Best-in-class features deliver best-in-class business value
Stemming from these technical strengths are a wealth of business benefits. Among others:
In short, TWS for Applications collaborates with SAP in your environment to make SAP applications even more efficient and powerful — generating industry-leading value matched by no other IT solution provider.
Migrate to Passport Advantage
Revised Passport Advantage agreements bring multiple sets of existing terms together and offer Passport Advantage Express clients the option to migrate to Passport Advantage. Now a single agreement covers IBM Appliances, SaaS offerings, new licenses and Software Subscription and Support – with no entry point requirement for Passport Advantage.
Leverage and contribute to the collective wisdom around Tivoli