How HANA Creates Lock in with Core Data Services in HANA

What This Article Covers

  • What is a Core Data Service?
  • How HANA Pushes Down CDS
  • The Lock In to HANA

Introduction

In this article, we will review the push down of the Core Data Services into HANA. This is presented as a universal positive by SAP, but is it?

What is a Core Data Service?

A core data service is an enhancement to SQL that is a new data modeling infrastructure. This means the data models are defined and consumed in the database rather than the application.

How HANA Pushes Down CDS

However, there are those with considerable database expertise that suggest that HANA driven CDS enabled functionality pushed down to HANA will likely not end well in the longer term. In fact, this is not at all now. Oracle Retail used PL-SQL functionality to push down code into the database from the application. Similar to HANA the logic was for performance reasons.

SAP IS Retail largely sustained more clear separation of duties between the SAP application, NetWeaver and RDBMS tiers, which also enabled AnyDB choices. The issue with the Retek/Oracle approach which tightly linked together the application code as that any client facing customizations, and the application/database versions, made **future upgrades very complex and costly**.

Essentially vs SAP they became effectively “re-implementations” vs supporting technology upgrades that were possible with SAP NetWeaver and SAP IS Retail. And then comes the issue of lock-in.

The Lock In to HANA

One of these database experts stated the following about HANA’s CDS.

I’m personally nervous where the whole HANA driven application to database functional push down will take clients in the long term, for sure they become firmly locked into HANA and any aligned commercial terms.

Conclusion

Core Data Services is a mechanism of lock-in presented as a positive functionality for SAP customers. SAP calls them Core Data Services because they are trying to maintain the illusion that they are doing something very different and innovative from other database vendors. Normally this functionality is called as a stored procedure. Stored procedures are how Oracle increases the difficulty for companies in moving away from the Oracle database and how it reduces the portability between applications and databases.

References

[Core Data Services CDS in SAP S/4 HANA | SAP Blogs](https://blogs.sap.com/2016/09/26/core-data-services-cds-in-sap-s4-hana/)

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