Centralize and Simplify SAP Solution Maintenance Across Your System Landscape with the Maintenance Optimizer — An
Administrator’s Guide

  • by Martin Rink, SAP AG
  • Stefan Raffel, SAP AG
  • January 15, 2008
Keeping your SAP solutions up-to-date across development, test, and production landscapes is a daunting task, and the growing number of applications, functionalities, and integrated technologies only adds to the challenge. SAP Solution Manager 4.0 introduces the Maintenance Optimizer, a tool that centralizes and simplifies solution maintenance across your entire landscape — it detects and downloads relevant support packages and patches, it guides you through the maintenance process, and, as of April 2007, it is required for maintaining SAP Business Suite 2005 and higher. This article gets you up and running quickly with the Maintenance Optimizer and shows you how to get the most out of it.

Implementing and testing support packages and patches have become almost daily tasks for SAP teams. The growing number of SAP solutions and SAP NetWeaver components, as well as the addition of Java and Web runtimes to the Basis platform, has only magnified the enormity of this challenge. When you take into account that each solution must have its own development, test, and production landscape, high availability and load balancing requirements, as well as patching requirements at the operating system, database, kernel, and application levels, you begin to realize the impracticality of a system-by-system maintenance approach.

The Maintenance Optimizer (MOPZ), released in January 2007 as part of SAP Solution Manager 4.0, offers a big step forward, giving administrators a central tool for planning, executing, and managing the installation of support packages and patches across their entire SAP landscape.

Specifically, the current release — as of this writing, support package (SP) 14 — simplifies the tedious process of identifying and downloading applicable support items for all of your systems by providing you with an organized, easy-to-follow, guided procedure. With upcoming releases, MOPZ will use the Software Lifecycle Manager (SLM) service of SAP NetWeaver Application Server (AS) Java to automatically download identified support items (planned for SP 15), and will automate the deployment of support items (planned for SP 17).

Martin Rink

Martin Rink received a master’s degree in Business Engineering and Administration in 1992 from the University of Applied Sciences in Karlsruhe, Germany. He has 15 years of experience in managing IT projects. Martin joined SAP in 1998, and for the last five years, he has worked as a Product Manager of the SAP Support Infrastructure team. Together with Stefan Raffel, Martin is responsible for the fundamental concepts of the SAP Solution Manager Maintenance Optimizer, for its integration into the SAP Support Infrastructure, and for communication with customers about its features and functionality.

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Stefan Raffel

Stefan Raffel holds a master’s degree in Mathematics from the University of Heidelberg. He joined SAP in 1998 and was Production Project Lead for the products SAP Strategic Enterprise Management and SAP Bank Analyzer for several years. Stefan developed the SAP Solution Manager Cross System Object Locking functionality, and he is the responsible architect for the SAP Solution Manager Maintenance Optimizer.

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