SAP upgrade SPAU and SPAU_ENH handling

At the end of each upgrade or support package SPAU and SPAU_ENH handling is required.

Questions that will be answered in this blog are:

  • How to execute SPAU processing?
  • What is SPAU_ENH?
  • Where to find more background information on SPAU?

SPAU processing

General information on SPAU processing can be found in OSS note 1970888 – How To: SPDD/SPAU handling during the Update/Upgrade.

When you start transaction SPAU it will ask for a Protocol Title. Give it a meaningful name (background information on the protocol is in OSS note 2497863 – A protocol has to be created before SPAU/SPDD can be executed):

Now you enter the main SPAU screen. The first action to do is to push the button Prepare Notes:

This will start a batch job to download latest versions of the OSS notes and will check if they are relevant for your support pack or upgrade. You can monitor this job in SM37:

For a support pack this jobs can take up to 30 minutes. For an upgrade of ECC on large system it can easily run for 4 hours or more.

After the notes download is done SPAU has 3 tabs:

Notes, with assistant and without assistant. For each tab make download or screen shots of the items before starting with SPAU handling. For each item record your action for future reference. If anything is wrong with the note or ABAP object, you can refer back to this recorded decision.

OSS notes processing

First start with the OSS notes processing. Complete all OSS notes before proceeding to the next tab.

The processing sequence is top down: older OSS notes first, then work down all the list.

In principle, you want to return as much as possible to standard SAP. But be careful: the older OSS notes might be valid modification notes which need to be re-applied after support pack or upgrade. Check with these ones with the functional team.

Old modification OSS notes can give a warning like this before you Reset them to original:

Some OSS notes might give download issues:

In some cases the note might not even be available any more on support.sap.com. Check it there. If not available, check if the content can be ignored.

Some notes might give issues with content delivery event:

Check on support.sap.com if the note is still present. Check if the content can be ignored.

Some notes might be locked:

Most likely root cause: in SPDD processing sometimes you have to process OSS notes as well, and have to repeat in SPAU phase. In this case, release the SPDD transport from client 000 and redo the action in SPAU.

If you re-enter SPAU later (next day), you might encounter this screen:

In this case choose Continue with Current Protocol.

With modification assistant

Proceed with the tab With modification assistant only when the Notes tab has been processed. There might be some note items left due to the issues mentioned above. When agreed to ignore, you can proceed with the With modification assistant tab.

Reminder: download the items and record your decisions.

For each item you need to decide to Reset the object (return to standard SAP), or took fully keep the modification, or to do a manual adjustment. SAP can make guided proposals in this section.

It is an expert job to make the right decisions. Never let junior staff deal with this part. And when you do, you will regret it later on. It can take a huge amount of time to discover the issues and find out it was because of wrong handling in SPAU.

Without modification assistant

After you have completely done the With modification assistant tab, move on the to Without Modification tab.

Here the same processing as With Modification Assistant. SAP will not make any suggestions. Same expert warning as above.

Checking and activation

The other 3 tabs in SPAU (deletions, migrations and translations) are optional. Process as much as you can:

After SPAU has been done, goto SE80 and make sure that all objects are activated. If not activated, process each inactive object.

Never report back to the basis team to finalise SUM upgrade if you have inactive objects left. On older releases, when SUM is finalised and you still have inactive objects, you need to call off object keys.

SPAU_ENH

After SPAU, you are not yet done. You need to start SPAU_ENH transaction and take care of all the enhancements (explicit and implicit):

OSS note 2584912 – How to work with SPAU_ENH contains a word manual with tips and tricks.

With an S4HANA upgrade, you will regret the implicit enhancements. The code were they were applied to might simply have disappeared.

Custom Z code

Custom Z code is not part of SPAU handling. This you do after the upgrade.

For S4HANA you need to do custom code adjustments. Read more in this blog.

Further upgrade post-processing

Pending on your use of functionality more upgrade or support package post processing might be required. Read this dedicated blog for more details.

SAP upgrade SPDD handling

When upgrading any SAP system, the data dictionary objects changes done to standard SAP will have to managed. This is done in the SPDD phase of the upgrade.

Questions that will be answered in this blog are:

  • How to logon to the shadow system?
  • How to process the SPDD items?
  • Why is it important to document the SPDD items?

Logging on to the upgrade shadow system

Logging on to the upgrade shadow system to perform the SPDD processing can be done in two ways:

  1. Create extra SAP GUI entry based on the data from the SAP basis team
  2. Via SM59 connection SAP_UPGRADE_SHADOW_SYSTEM

In SM59 goto the RFC connection SAP_UPGRADE_SHADOW_SYSTEM. Now press the button Remote Logon:

As processor of SPDD, the basis team will need to create your account in the shadow system and inform you on the password.

SPDD processing

Once logged in to the shadow system, start transaction SPDD:

First start with the With Assistant tab and handle all items, before moving to the Without Assistant tab.

Before starting with any processing, make screen shots/downloads of both tabs. Later when processing the SPDD, write down in any way the decisions you have made. Typically the first upgrade (and SPDD) is done on a sandbox system. Also write SPDD decisions down on the sandbox. If anything appears not ok, you can still do the right thing on the real development system.

The SPDD has to be save in one single transport. This transport will be re-used by basis team from the development system for further on upgrades. This tool (SUM tool) can handle only 1 transport. If there were more transport requests created, merge them to one ( use Include objects functionality) and mark it for transport via Utilities -> Assign Transport in SPDD/SPAU.

SPDD with assistance

On the SPDD with assistance, per item first select the option Compare Versions:

This overview is normally too big to analyse. Press the button Delta display to see the differences:

Based on the content you have to decide to:

  1. Reset (reset back to standard SAP)
  2. Adjust (make you own changes)

This decision is not made in the delta screen, but back in the main SPDD screen. Finalize all the items with assistance, before proceeding to without assistance tab. Record all you decision.

SPDD without assistance

Now proceed on the SPDD tab without assistance:

Red items can only be reset to standard SAP.

For yellow, green and white items there are 3 options:

  1. Reset (back to standard SAP)
  2. Adjust with proposal
  3. Adjust (manually)

A proposal can be accepted or adjusted:

Process each item in the list.

Final checks on SPDD

Before reporting SPDD complete, first check in SE80 that there are no inactive objects left:

If any inactive object is left: activate it. Solve all issues.

Under no circumstance leave issues that DDIC objects cannot be activated. The further on SUM processing will stop due to this inactivation, and you have to redo again till this point, and still have to solve this issue.

Check at the end that all SPDD items are done:

If the list is not empty, discuss with your basis team, before concluding if SPDD is done.

This is reason why you need to create screen shots/download the list in the beginning: it is gone now.

Background

More information can be found in OSS note 1970888 – How To: SPDD/SPAU handling during the Update/Upgrade.

SAP pathfinder

SAP pathfinder is an SAP tool to give you insights into your system and let SAP tell you where they think you can improve, optimise and innovate.

Questions that will be answered in this blog are:

  • What is SAP pathfinder?
  • How do I run it?
  • Can I see a sample report of what I will get?

SAP pathfinder

SAP pathfinder is part of the innovation and value support part of SAP. The full background can be read on the SAP pathfinder site. This site includes video’s that explain everything.

On this site you can also find an example output report.

Background OSS notes:

How to run SAP pathfinder?

For SAP pathfinder you will need to upload 2 files to the SAP site:

  • EWA with BKF (business key figure) data
  • ST03N download data

The ST03N data is simple. If you do not have the BKF section yet in your EWA read on below.

If you have the files, upload them at the SAP site, confirm, and wait about 1 to 2 weeks before SAP has finished your report.

Main screen shot from the sample:

Setting up the BKF section in the EWA

OSS note 2282310 – Business Key Figures for EWA report contains the steps to get the BKF chapter activated.

Make sure in the managed system the user running the EWA data collection has the special role SAP_MANAGED_BPOANA_DIS. This is cause number 1 of issues.

If you make the settings, you would have to wait 3 weeks before the data is filled properly.

To gain speed, you can use the Express option. This option is explained in OSS note 2821062 – BKF Express Option/Manually running the BPMON job.

The UI of Business key figures Chapter Setting settings in the EWA is terrible. Please use the scroll bars to go to the right part. And the instruction mentions that you need to double click on a button or tab. This is correct. If you click once, nothing will happen. You really need to double click. This is completely counter-intuitive. But if you don't do it, it will not work, and you loose a lot of time.

If it still does not work, don’t hesitate to raise a message to SAP for component SV-SMG-SER-EWA.

SAP might ask you to apply the note 2477832 – SAP EWA Special Content BKF – on demand data collection (routine update & ZReport) as a workaround.

Analyzing code before upgrade or support package: CDMC toolset

This blog will explain on the use of the CDMC toolset you can run analyzing your custom code, before starting upgrade or support package.

CDMC toolset

Start transaction CNV_CDMC to goto the CDMC overview.

Goto ad hoc analysis:

CNV_CDMC start screen

Start SAP modification run

Determine SAP modifications run

Wait for run to finish. If done, click the Display Results.

Run ready

View results:

Run results

Setback of the modification overview: also OSS notes are marked as modifications.

Other useful runs: Syntax check and Inactive customer objects.

If you run these checks before an upgrade you can save quite some annoying issues during the upgrade itself.

OSS notes

Relevant OSS notes:

2772644 – ST-PI/CDMC: Clearing analysis alv error

SGEN: code generation

After any support pack and upgrade you want to check and make sure the ABAP code in the system is ok and pre-compiled for business use. The SGEN code generator tool does the job for you.

Questions that will be answered in this blog are:

  • How to run SGEN?
  • How can I see the result behind SGEN?

Running SGEN

Starting SGEN is simple by starting the transaction code SGEN. The initial screen looks like this:

Select the option you want to use. The most common feature option is the Regenerate after SAP system upgrade. Press continue. You now reach the load generator screen to distribute the load across many parallel processes:

SGEN load generator

Select the servers and press continue.

SGEN is a resource intensive process: performance during the run will be pretty low....

In the load monitor you now release the job and you can start to monitor it:

SGEN generator monitor

You can also monitor in SM37 the batch job for program RSPARAGENER8M .

Data behind SGEN

Table GENSETM contains the results of the generation run. The field GENSTATUS is the generation status. Values of this field:

X = generated

E or S = error

I = initial

Background

More background information on SGEN can be found in the FAQ note: 1989778 – FAQ: SGEN.

Preparation for SAP upgrade or support package

This blog explains about preparation you can do for SAP upgrade of support package.

Questions that will be answered are:

  • Where to find support package schedule?
  • Where to find version information on upgrades?
  • Do I need to do delta sizing for upgrade?

Latest available main version for upgrade

For the latest available version you can check the SAP product availability matrix site. This is also know as the SAP-PAM.

After finding the right product on the first tab you can see the current release details and end of support date.

PAM details release and support dates

On the second tab you see the upgrade paths that are supported:

PAM details upgrade paths

In the middle the target version. On the left hand the versions from which you can upgrade. To the right are even higher versions you can upgrade to.

Latest available versions of support packages

The latest availabe versions of support packages are published by SAP on the SAP support package stacks page. On this page click on the SAP support package stack maintenance schedule link to download the latest version of the schedule.

Support package version: minus one or latest?

In many companies there is a policy to never take the latest version of a support package. The line of thinking is: let other people solve the bugs of SAP first.

Current delivery of ABAP support packages is quite good. And the frequency is not so high as in the past. For ECC about 2 to 3 support packages per year are released (as compare to 6 to 9 in the past in the 4.6 ages).

In stead of taking minus one, you can also consider this rule: at point of go-live make sure that the support package is at least released 3 months ago. This will counter the risk of having an issue which is not discovered by anyone else before.

Delta sizing

Delta sizing for support packages is not needed. Delta sizing for an upgrade might be required if:

  • Upgrade crosses multiple versions (for example upgrade from Netweaver 6.20 to Netweaver 7.51)
  • Upgrade is including a new database (for example migration to HANA database)
  • Specific upgrade manual is specific about delta sizing (for example the upgrade from SAP solution manager 7.1 to 7.2 is specific enough to carry out delta sizing)

Custom code

For analyzing custom code before the upgrade you can use the CDMC toolset. For more information read this blog.

Releasing transports and cleaning up transport pipeline

For both support package and upgrade releasing transports is a technical must. It is wise to start a few months before already cleaning up the transport pipeline (transports that are old and not released in development system, transports that are imported into quality environment, but no imported in productive system).

Side effect report for support packages

Per support package SAP keeps track of the unwanted side effects. OSS note 2388572 explains you how to retrieve them for your support package. Best to scan the side effects and apply the ones you think are needed.

For upgrades the side effects list is too large: here you simply need to test and fix any issues encountered.

New functions

After the upgrade you can start to use new functions. Some main functions are listed in the SAP help pages. The more unknown small features are listed by SAP in the SAP improvements finder xls. This xls has 2 tabs: first with the most recent and second with the long list of improvements since 2014. Per improvement you need to check pee-conditions of release and support package, but if you upgraded to recent version, most of the improvements will be installed. Some improvements are always active, some need extra activation steps. This is documented per improvement item.

Aftercare after upgrade

For aftercare after upgrade or support package read this blog.

Aftercare for SAP upgrade or support package

This blog will explain the normal aftercare that needs to happen after an SAP system is upgrade or has been patches with support packages.

Questions that will be answered:

  • What is the normal processing sequence in SPAU?
  • What is the new SPAU_ENH transaction?
  • Which aftercare is needed when using embedded search via TREX or HANA?
  • Which aftercare is needed for the authorization team?
  • What are the general sanity checks after an upgrade?
  • How to regenerate SAP_ALL and SAP_NEW?
  • What other things to do after upgrade?

SPAU processing

For extensive explanation on SPAU, read the dedicated blog. The below is a summary.

When starting transaction SPAU in a netweaver 7.50 or higher system the screen will look as follows:

First thing to do is to hit the Reset OSS notes button or Prepare OSS notes button (the name can differ bit per version):

This will download all OSS notes again and automatically mark the obsolete ones and will remove them from the list. Wait until the batch job doing this job for you is finished. This will save you a lot of time.

In a 7.50 or higher system look at OSS note 2532229 that solves a bug with notes in adjustment mode.

Second step is to process all the OSS notes. Don’t start the other activities until the OSS notes are done.

Third step is to process the tab With Assistant. Only when this is done continue with the tab Without Assistant.

The steps Deletions, Migrations and Translations are optional, but best to do as well. Deletions can be many, but here you can select all and reset to SAP quite quickly.

SPAU_ENH to process enhancements

Often forgotten is the post processing with transaction SPAU_ENH.

If there are changes in enhancements made by SAP conflicts with customer implementations can occur. SPAU_ENH will list them, and you can process them. If forgotten the customer implementation might not be called, which can lead to functionality giving errors.

In rare cases you will need to regenerate the enhancement spots via program ENH_REGENERATE.

RTCCTOOL post processing

After any upgrade/support package the basis person must run the RTCCTOOL program. This will check and list any needed updates.

In almost all cases the actions behind the button Addons&Upgr must be triggered by the basis person.

DMIS plug in OSS notes

If you are using the DMIS plugin for SLT, then you need to run program DMC_NOTE_ANALYZER again after the support package or upgrade. More information: read this blog.

Embedded search post processing

With an upgrade or support package SAP will deliver new improved version of embedded search models. If you are using embedded search you have to do post processing to make use of these new improved versions.

By default SAP will keep using the old model to make sure the search function keeps working. The basis administrator can then update the search models at their convenience.

To update start transaction ESH_COCKPIT:

Then from the Other drop down select the option Model modified:

Note: if there are no Model modified present, but you do get the message like "update in background started", then wait until the model update background job is finished. This job can take long time. If finished restart tcode ESH_COCKPIT again.

Select all to be updated (or in case there is a lot a subsection). Then select from Actions menu the Update option:

Then you have to wait (a lot). Even on HANA this will take a long time.

You might get a message that you yourself are locking the update process: in this case, wait until your processes in the background are done (SM66 monitoring) and then try again, or use smaller selection.

Authorization post processing

With any upgrade or support package SAP will deliver new authorization objects. These need to be handled as well.

Regenerate SAP_ALL and SAP_NEW

SAP_ALL needs to be regenerated. This can be done simply by starting transaction SU21 and hitting the Regenerate SAP_ALL button:

See also SAP note 410424 – Customizing for generation of profile SAP_ALL.

SAP_NEW can be regenerated with program REGENERATE_SAP_NEW:

Regenerate SAP_NEW

See OSS note 2606478 – REGENERATE_SAP_NEW | bridging authorizations for input helps.

SU25 profile generator post processing

The authorization team needs to do post processing in the SU25 transaction to update profile generator.

Upon starting this transaction after the upgrade or support packages it will prompt you for having checked OSS note 440231 (SU25 preparation FAQ note).

Do download the most recent version (redownload the OSS note!) and read the content. The note cannot be applied automatically (it will say cannot be implemented). This is because it is a FAQ note. If you open the content scroll to your version and check the OSS notes. Make sure the notes listed there are applied to your system before continuing with SU25.

Then startup SU25 again and process steps 2a, 2b and 2c:

More background information can be found in SAP note 440231 – SU25 | FAQ: Upgrade postprocessing for Profile Generator.

Standard SAP job updates

After any SAP support package or upgrade, SAP will improve and/or change the standard clean up jobs.

To do this: goto SM36 and click the button Standard Jobs. Then select the Default Scheduling job. Then the system will tell you which jobs will be stopped (no longer needed), changed and new jobs there will be planned. See also the technical clean up blog.

For S4HANA standard jobs, read this blog.

Update of IMG nodes

If you use custom IMG nodes, you have to re-integrate your node into the main IMG using transaction S_IMG_EXTENSION. For more information see the blog on setting up custom IMG nodes.

Updating requirements and formulas

After an upgrade or support package the requirements and formulas might need to be regenerated via program RV80HGEN. More details: read this blog.

General sanity checks after an upgrade

The basic sanity checks after an upgrade actually start before the upgrade!

Before the system is being upgraded, you should check following items:

  • ST22 short dumps
  • SM37 batch job failures
  • SM13 update failures
  • SM59 RFC failures
  • SM21 system log issues

If you check this at regular intervals before the upgrade you get a good mental picture (you can also take screen shots before the upgrade) of the issues already present in the system.

After the system upgrade and/or support package you check these items again. Because you checked before it is easy for you to see and filter out new items. New items can be analyzed for solution (can be SAP note that is needed, custom code that is not properly updated, changes in functionality, etc).

SGEN code generation

After support pack or upgrade you can use transaction SGEN to generate all ABAP code (standard SAP and custom) and check for errors in code generation. More information in this blog.

Other things to do after an upgrade

After an upgrade you can scan and check for new or enhanced functions you can use.

Examples to check:

  • SAP audit logging will deliver new checks, but these are deselected after the upgrade
  • If using enterprise search: check if SAP delivered new search models that might be interesting for the business