SCHWENK Zement builds its future with SAP applications, IBM DB2 and IBM System z | Ibm Db2 | Sap Se

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SCHWENK Zement builds its future with SAP applications, IBM DB2 and IBM System z

Overview
 The Challenge From its German foundations, SCHWENK Zement is growing internationally. Connecting and controlling new operations in, for example, Namibia, places unique challenges on a highly cost-conscious business. The infrastructure supporting the SAP NetWeaver ® Business Warehouse solutions had system outages almost daily. Combined with poor response times, this meant that users of the system could not rely on it. To support international growth, SCHWENK wanted to be able to incorporate new operations into its SAP application landscape at a low incremental cost, and simultaneously solve the infrastructure performance difficulties.  The Solution SCHWENK Zement migrated SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse databases to IBM DB2 for z/OS on IBM System z
®,

At the same time, SCHWENK implemented IBM System Storage® DS8100, using IBM FlashCopy® for immediate, uninterruptible data backup and IBM Metro Mirror for remote site data copy, with IBM System Storage® TS7700 Virtualization Engine and IBM System Storage® TS3500 Tape Library for the long-term archive. The IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse Accelerator was also implemented.  The Benefits Migrating the database for SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse to DB2 on IBM System z10 has cured the system reliability issues. Additionally, this provided the benefit of running all databases of all SAP applications on DB2 for z/OS, dramatically simplifying the IT landscape with only a few administrators required for all of SCHWENK’s operations. Deploying IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse Accelerator has made business intelligence query response performance up to 100 times faster.

 Key Solution Components Industry: Construction Applications: SAP® ERP applications, including controlling, financials, materials management, production planning, sales and distribution, SAP® Order Engineering Work Bench, SAP® Real Estate, SAP ERP® Human Capital Management, SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse Accelerator Hardware: IBM System z10 Business Class, IBM System x3650 servers, IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse Accelerator featuring IBM BladeCenter®, IBM Systems Storage TS7700 Virtualization Engine, IBM Systems Storage TS3500 Tape Library Software: IBM DB2® for z/OS, IBM FlashCopy, IBM MetroMirror, VMware ESX Services: IBM Premier Business Partner Fritz & Macziol

and deployed

the SAP application landscape on VMware virtual servers on the IBM System x® platform.

“With the System z10 in place, we can absorb peaks in processing demand without an impact on system performance and without the need for additional investments. Timing is the crucial point here. SCHWENK has periods of intensive distribution and shipping, because construction is a seasonal business.”
Wolfgang Monz, Head of IT, Schwenk

SCHWENK Zement, based in Ulm, Southern Germany, specializes in construction concretes, selling internationally to the building industry. The group employs some 3,000 people. Over time, SCHWENK has extended its SAP application landscape to cover every aspect of the business. From 300 users in the beginning, now around 1,000 people access the SAP applications on a regular basis. In 2003, SCHWENK introduced SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse (SAP NetWeaver BW) to answer specific questions related to logistics and cost management. The original SAP NetWeaver BW solution and the associated databases were implemented on standalone x86architecture servers. Over time, the workload overwhelmed the system, which became unreliable with almost daily unplanned outages. Combined with poor response times, this meant that users could not depend on it.

At the same time, SCHWENK was growing the business with new operations. The expansion of international operations places unique challenges on a highly cost-conscious business, and it was important to provide both the standard SAP applications to the new business units and to enable reliable, rapid analysis using SAP NetWeaver BW. Andreas Nischwitz, System Manager System z at SCHWENK Zement, comments, “The growth in use of the SAP applications, the increase in database workload, and particularly the demands on the SAP NetWeaver BW solution, made it clear that the x86 architecture was inadequate for our use with respect to performance and downtime. We were confronted with the question, which IT architecture was the right long-term strategic choice for SCHWENK?” The expanding SAP application landscape now included controlling, financials, materials management, production planning, sales and distribution, SAP Order Engineering Work Bench, SAP Real Estate and SAP ERP Human Capital Management. Consolidate foundations or new build? Already with the upgrade from SAP R/2 to SAP R/3, options to migrate the SAP applications and databases to a new x86 server farm, or to consolidate all SAP databases to the IBM System z platform while reusing and virtualizing the existing Intel-architecture landscape as application servers were evaluated. SCHWENK already had positive experience of the reliability, availability and scalability of System z, which

made running SAP R/3 on this platform a matter of course. This also led to the fact that SAP applications from insourcing activities or new respectively acquired business areas were migrated to SAP DB2 for z/OS. This solution also provides many other benefits, such as hardware-assisted compression and superior, policybased disk and tape management that virtualizes the external storage resources for maximum performance and capacity. At this point, working closely with IBM Premier Business Partner Fritz & Macziol, SCHWENK decided to upgrade its existing IBM System z9 server to a System z10 Business Class. Andreas Nischwitz says, “We looked at the key questions, such as how many servers would you need to offer the equivalent database capacity for SAP NetWeaver BW on x86 architecture. Although at the time we had just six SAP instances, we were constantly introducing new business areas that needed database support, and the ability to scale and grow easily was a major deciding factor.” “We discussed using the x86 architecture for the database, and with just the six SAP instances it certainly looked as if x86 would have been much smaller and potentially lower cost. However, in 2004, SCHWENK brought all outsourced systems back in-house, and by 2007, corporate acquisitions and mergers produced a total of 22 SAP instances.” Wolfgang Monz, Head of IT, comments “At that point business intelligence truly came to the foreground, and this

would have required an additional two SAP instances, which raised questions of scalability, maintenance, and staffing resources. “The System z platform provided an elegant means to expand database support for the SAP application footprint and the SAP NetWeaver BW capacity with very little downtime and without the need for further upgrades in order to test the system. Without doubt there was some degree of skepticism, but the cost-benefit advantages, the ability to grow without the need for additional server investments, the excellent performance and the absolute reliability of the IBM System z have proved the case beyond doubt. “All the SAP applications rely on DB2 on the System z, and this is similarly economical, requiring just four IT administrators for DB2 and z/OS as well as the SAP Basis to manage the SCHWENK database landscape on z/OS.” Survey of the new architecture SCHWENK now operates its IBM z10 Business Class server divided into six logical partitions (LPARs), with workload distributed over three central processors and two System z Integrated Information Processors (zIIP). Wolfgang Monz says, “We upgraded our former System z to IBM System z10 Business Class, and completed implementation and migration in a single process. “With the System z10 in place, we can absorb peaks in processing demand without an impact on system

“Last year we added the IT operations from a new manufacturing plant, and the production planning workload almost doubled. Through timing of the different workloads, System z10 is able to handle the increased demand using the existing processor footprint, and continue meeting our service level agreements.”
Andreas Nischwitz, System Manager System z, Schwenk

TECHNICAL LANDSCAPE Servers: IBM System z10 Business Class, IBM System x3650 servers, IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse Accelerator featuring IBM BladeCenter, IBM Systems Storage TS7700 Virtualization Engine, IBM Systems Storage TS3500 Tape Library Software: IBM z/OS 1.10, IBM DB2 for z/OS V9.1, IBM FlashCopy, IBM MetroMirror, SAP ERP, SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse, SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse Accelerator, VMware, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server Users: 1,000

“SAP ERP and SAP NetWeaver BW supported by DB2 on System z10 gives us the ability to create new and resize existing applications exactly according to changing business needs, while the IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver BW allows us to scale up our business intelligence systems in a cost-effective, flexible manner that helps SCHWENK meet its international growth challenges.”
Wolfgang Monz, Head of IT, Schwenk

performance and without the need for additional investments. Timing is the crucial point here. SCHWENK has periods of intensive distribution and shipping, because construction is a seasonal business.”

Metro Mirror for remote site data copy, with IBM Systems Storage TS7700 Virtualization Engine and IBM Systems Storage TS3500 Tape Library for the long-term archive. The IBM TS7700 Virtualization Engine

Consolidating to System z10 is producing immediate measurable benefits for SCHWENK, as Andreas Nischwitz reports: “Last year we added the IT operations from a new manufacturing plant, and the production planning workload almost doubled. Through timing of the different workloads, System z10 is able to handle the increased demand using the existing processor footprint, and continue meeting our service level agreements.” Data is stored on two IBM System Storage DS8100 units at separate locations, with IBM MetroMirror providing synchronous long-distance copy. DB2 for z/OS, with hardwareassisted compression, offers considerable savings of typically more than 50 percent in storage volumes. Advanced functionality, such as the ability to add partitions and change data definitions without requiring system downtime, maximizes data availability. DB2 includes industryleading backup and recovery programs, and together with the virtualization capabilities existing storage devices can be exploited to their maximum capacity, helping to avoid or defer hardware investments as storage volumes rise. Backup and archive services are provided by IBM FlashCopy for immediate data backup and IBM

provides an integrated tiered hierarchy of disk and tape storage. Data is transferred at high speed to virtual tape drives that are actually disk volumes. The TS7700 then handles the transfer from logical to physical tapes in the TS3500 tape library. Business intelligence landscape With the database tasks moved to System z10, SCHWENK took the opportunity to migrate its SAP application servers to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES). The existing IBM System x 3650 and other servers were re-configured with VMware ESX, which is used as virtualization platform for the Linux operating system. Implementing VMware ESX frees SCHWENK from the one-server-perapplication architecture, as the physical servers can be divided into multiple virtual servers, each running a separate Linux operating system with precisely the right processor, memory and bandwidth according to the SAP application workload. On the x3650 servers the individual VMware ESX virtual servers can be managed easily, and these Linux guest systems can scale up with additional memory and processor capacity as required. With growing amounts of data and an increasing number of users of the SAP NetWeaver BW solution, SCHWENK realized that this had become a critical part of the business landscape.

Wolfgang Monz says, “Our business intelligence environment, based on data from the SAP applications as well as non-SAP databases, was growing continuously. As new business units joined, they would want immediate access to materials management, inventory control, production planning, and distribution. Demand grew strongly and SAP NetWeaver BW developed into a business-critical application.” He comments, “Previously, about 60 to 70 percent of our administrative capacity was absorbed in bug-fixing and data loading for the SAP NetWeaver BW solution. Many performance improvements coming along with DB2 for z/OS version 9 allow us now to deliver vital information to SCHWENK executives rapidly and reliably, helping them to drive business improvements.” – Relevant are the specifically for SAP NetWeaver BW designed features, such as Dynamic Index ANDing, Sparse Index, and In Memory Data Cache. As the total data set expanded, SCHWENK looked for ways to improve SAP NetWeaver BW query performance, and chose to invest in the SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator. The BW Accelerator combines some modern acceleration techniques like vertical decomposition of tables, horizontal partitioning of the whole volume, smart compression, advanced indexing technology, and massive parallel execution of requests with a hardware infrastructure built of clustered blade-based Intel servers and corresponding optimized storage solutions that fit to these concepts to deliver very fast responses to business intelligence queries.

To deploy the solution, SCHWENK selected the IBM Systems Solution for SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator, an integrated package that combines powerful business warehouse infrastructure and data warehousing functionality with a comprehensive set of tools, planning and simulation capabilities. The IBM Systems solution for SAP BW Accelerator extends the reach of traditional SAP NetWeaver BW environments to near real-time by improving the speed of query processing by up to 100 times in some cases. The solution is based on IBM BladeCenter technology, which offers a scalable architecture that enables businesses to match increasing requirements over time, simply by adding additional blades, a process that produces near-linear increases in performance. The IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator is designed to deliver reduced administration costs, greater flexibility in the types and depths of queries, and improved user creativity in analyzing business problems. Future building projects For SCHWENK, moving to DB2 for z/OS has dramatically simplified its IT landscape and cured system reliability issues. Deploying IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator has delivered business intelligence query response performance up to 100 times faster on an integrated solution that reduces impact on production systems and is also capable of near-linear expansion as needs grow. Currently SCHWENK is focusing on building resilience, using a Sysplex

“Previously, about 60 to 70 percent of our administrative capacity was absorbed in bug-fixing and data loading for the SAP NetWeaver BW solution. Many performance improvements coming along with DB2 for z/OS version 9 allow us now to deliver vital information to SCHWENK executives rapidly and reliably, helping them to drive business improvements.”
Wolfgang Monz, Head of IT, Schwenk

cluster and DB2 Datasharing. This cluster technology will allow SCHWENK to complete operating system and database software updates without interrupting the production SAP operations, even though these run on just one physical machine. Additional data management technologies such as MetroMirror and tape virtualization have enhanced system resilience, improved backup reliability and provided the ability to recover from disaster. Wolfgang Monz concludes, “Nothing ever stands still in business. In our core business area we are faced with the challenge of building profitable operations in Namibia, and right now we are also in the middle of a re-engineering project in different business areas. “SAP ERP and SAP NetWeaver BW supported by DB2 on System z10 gives us the ability to create new and resize existing applications exactly according to changing business needs, while the IBM Systems solution for SAP NetWeaver BW allows us to scale up our business intelligence systems in a cost-effective, flexible manner that helps SCHWENK meet its international growth challenges.”

“Our business intelligence environment, based on data from the SAP applications as well as non-SAP databases, was growing continuously. As new business units joined, they would want immediate access to materials management, inventory control, production planning, and distribution. Demand grew strongly and SAP NetWeaver BW developed into a business-critical application.”
Wolfgang Monzblah, Head of IT, Schwenk

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© Copyright 2010 SAP AG SAP AG Dietmar-Hopp-Allee 16 D-69190 Walldorf SAP, the SAP logo, SAP and all other SAP products and services mentioned herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP AG in Germany and several other countries. SPC03283-DEEN-00 (November 2010)

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