Working with Mappings in SAP HANA Cloud Integration

  • by Dr. Volker Stiehl, Professor, Ingolstadt Technical University of Applied Sciences
  • December 1, 2015
See how to use SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) to model the invocation of mappings in order to map fields between different message formats. You apply the mapping step in your integration flow and use the mapping editor to graphically assign fields of different message formats to each other.
Learning Objectives

By reading this article you will:

  • Know how to apply mappings in your SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI)-based scenarios
  • Understand what is necessary to configure the mapping step in your route correctly
  • Learn how to use either XML Schema Definition (XSD) or Web Services Description Language (WSDL) files for the definition of the involved request and response messages
  • Understand the major differences between message processing in SAP HCI and SAP Process Integration (SAP PI)
Key Concept

SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) is SAP’s integration platform as a service (iPaaS) solution allowing you to build scenarios for connecting cloud applications with other cloud or on-premise applications. Those applications do not necessarily have to be SAP applications, but you especially benefit from SAP HCI if you connect SAP cloud/on-premise applications with each other because SAP ships predefined integration content for SAP HCI. This significantly reduces integration costs.

Every integration project requires mapping functionality due to the many different message formats that are being used in the systems that need to be connected. Hence, integration solutions such as SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) must provide functionality to solve this problem elegantly. This article shows how to apply mappings in your integration flows. I explain the configuration of the mapping step in great detail. In addition I show how SAP HCI message processing differs from message processing within SAP Process Integration (SAP PI) and what consequences this brings for the mapping’s configuration.

In every integration scenario, mapping between different data formats of the participating systems is always a hot topic. I would say it is one of the most important tasks you have to do for every integration project, and it always requires effort to implement. Supporting the modeler with a convenient mapping environment and a high-performing mapping engine is of highest importance for every integration framework.

SAP gained some experience in building a mapping engine through its SAP PI product. Right from the beginning, SAP PI included a Java-based mapping engine. Consequently it became an obvious choice to include the same mapping engine in SAP HCI as well. It is a stable and reliable engine that has been in productive use for many years. In addition, because of this mapping engine reuse, you can also reuse your SAP PI mappings in SAP HCI. This saves your investment in developed mapping logic.

This article, however, is not about the mapping engine itself, the functionality it provides, or how to solve certain mapping challenges because a plethora of material is already publicly available either in SAP’s online documentation for SAP PI or on SCN. Instead, I address the question of how to apply the mapping engine within SAP HCI so that you know how to use a mapping step in your message processing chain correctly.

Dr. Volker Stiehl

Prof. Dr. Volker Stiehl studied computer science at the Friedrich-Alexander-University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. After 12 years as a developer and senior system architect at Siemens, he joined SAP in 2004. As chief product expert, Volker was responsible for the success of the products SAP Process Orchestration, SAP Process Integration, and SAP HANA Cloud Integration (now SAP HANA Cloud Platform, integration service). He left SAP in 2016 and accepted a position as professor at the Ingolstadt Technical University of Applied Sciences where he is currently teaching business information systems. In September 2011, Volker received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Technology Darmstadt. His thesis was on the systematic design and implementation of applications using BPMN. Volker is also the author of Process-Driven Applications with BPMN as well as the co-author of SAP HANA Cloud Integration and a regular speaker at various national and international conferences.

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