How SAP Leverages OpenStack Technology for Driving Digital Transformation

Sanjay Patil, Chief Product Expert, SAP HANA Cloud Platform Product Management, SAP [NYSE:SAP]
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Sanjay Patil, Chief Product Expert, SAP HANA Cloud Platform Product Management, SAP [NYSE:SAP]

Adoption of the cloud is fundamental to digital transformation, and therefore a key element of SAP’s business strategy. Today, SAP offers a range of cloud LoB solutions in areas such as Customer Engagement and Commerce, Business Networks, Workforce Management, and IoT. With SAP HANA Enterprise cloud as a managed solution, SAP cloud Platform as an agile innovation platform, and the multitudes of Cloud LoB solutions, the cloud business at SAP is growing rapidly.

For many businesses, the key business value of cloud lies in its ability to drive faster innovation, faster time-to-market, agility in adapting to changing demands and achieving all of this at a lower capex and TCO. In order to deliver these values of cloud while meeting enterprise grade requirements and managing an unprecedented scale of operations, there needs to be a highly adaptable, flexible, and efficient infrastructure underneath. Recognizing such requirements early on, SAP has been supporting OpenStack as the standard infrastructure powering SAP cloud solutions. Standardizing on OpenStack also helps in converging the multitudes of home grown and acquired infrastructure technologies, while maintaining a vendor neutral, open environment for plugging in best of the breed solutions in the marketplace.

SAP is an active member of the OpenStack community and routinely makes contributions to the OpenStack projects such as Ironic, Manila, Monasca and Neutron.

SAP also leverages cloud Foundry, the industry-standard, open source Platform-as-a-Service technology, in its cloud platform solution–SAP Cloud Platform. Cloud Foundry supports multiple infrastructure options including public hyper-cloud providers like Amazon Web Services, as well as OpenStack. For running SAP Cloud Platform in SAP’s own data centers, as well as in private cloud scenarios, this combination of Cloud Foundry and OpenStack standards becomes uniquely powerful. In fact, MindSphere, Siemens’s Cloud for Industry solution is based on SAP Cloud Platform, and provides business innovation capabilities to its ecosystem in a range of areas such as connected manufacturing and connected logistics. MindSphere today benefits from the agile and open innovation capabilities of Cloud Foundry technology embedded in SAP Cloud Platform, running on the highly programmable and efficient infrastructure.

  ‚ÄčThe goal is to foster growth of the overall committer base of the open source projects without compromising their higher quality or predictable deliveries   

SAP has been leading an open source project called OpenStack BOSH CPI under the Cloud Foundry Foundation. This project builds the technology for deploying Cloud Foundry on top of OpenStack infrastructure and provides several innovative and useful tooling. For example, OpenStack Validator, a tool developed under this project, can be used to validate the capabilities of any given OpenStack installation for its readiness to handle Cloud Foundry workloads.

Cloud Foundry Foundation also has a unique concept called Dojo. The idea here is to have established community leaders of the Cloud Foundry open source projects provide a dedicated lab and mentoring program for other community members to receive a rigorous hands-on exposure to the open source projects for weeks together. The goal is to foster growth of the overall committer base of the open source projects without compromising their higher quality or predictable deliveries. SAP, as a leader of the OpenStack BOSH CPI project, has opened the first German Dojo lab in Walldorf, the SAP headquarters.

In summary, SAP is fully supportive of and committed to using OpenStack as the standard infrastructure technology for its own cloud data centers as well as for running SAP cloud solutions in private managed cloud scenarios.

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