Why Did SAP Pivot the Explanation of HANA In Memory?

Executive Summary

  • SAP has a very different explanation of how HANA’s memory management than when HANA was introduced.
  • We address why this pivot occurred.


SAP first introduced the idea that all data would be loaded into memory. We called out this as a myth in the article How to Understand the In-Memory Myth. This went on for years, beginning in 2011 and extending out to 2018. Then SAP started to change the description of how its HANA database worked, to the point where it sounded like how other databases optimized their memory. We covered this in the article Is SAP’s Warm Data Tiering for HANA New?  

But one question is why this pivot changed.

A Hypothesis Put Forward By Ahmed Azmi

Give me any database system and I can boost its performance by an order of magnitude simply by upgrading the hardware. If you spend a million dollars on memory and processor acceleration, you can make any database faster. It’s just a matter of throwing more hardware (money) at it.

That’s why SAP had to claim that HANA stores everything in memory. They had to justify the nefarious cost of the hardware. Now, they are pivoting away from that because they realized that hardware-driven performance doesn’t work when the product is hosted on a multi-tenant, scale-out platform like Azure & GCP.

This could be an explanatory reason for the change. It also merely brings HANA’s explanation back into line with reality. The fact that HANA used memory optimization and did not load all data into memory was clearly explained in HANA’s technical documentation.

Oracle’s View on HANA In Memory

While the article you are reading was initially published in June of 2019, in August of 2019, Oracle released a document called Oracle for SAP Database Update.

In this document, Oracle made the following statement about HANA versus Oracle.

Oracle Database 12c comes with a Database In-Memory option, however it is not an in-memory database. Support-ers of the in-memory database approach believe that a database should not be stored on disk, but (completely) in memory, and that all data should be stored in columnar format. It is easy to see that for several reasons (among them data persistency and data manipulation via OLTP applications) a pure in-memory database in this sense is not possible. Therefore, components and features not compatible with the original concept have silently been added to in-memory databases such as HANA.

Here Oracle is calling out SAP for lying. Furthermore, we agree with this. SAP’s proposal about placing all data into memory was always based upon ignorance and ignorance on the part of primarily Hasso Plattner.

If SAP had followed Oracle’s design approach, companies would not have to perform extensive code remediation — as we covered in the article SAP’s Advice on S/4HANA Code Remediation.

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SAP has two explanations for its products. One is the sales and marketing explanation. This explanation not only exaggerates the description of their products but, in many cases, changes the fundamental features of how their products work. HANA’s supposed “in memory” explanation, which persisted from 2011 to 2018, is just one example of this.

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Why it is Likely That HANA Underperforms SQL Server

Executive Summary

  • We have obtained reports of SQL Server outperforming HANA.
  • We analyze the hardware specification differences that lie beneath SQL Server versus HANA.

Why are IT departments not noticing that HANA’s performance is so unimpressive versus dramatically less expensive databases? 


In the field reports of SQL Server’s performance versus HANA, several customers have been surprised that HANA does not seem to outperform SQL Server for performing similar tasks. But one item is often left out in the conversation in performance comparison. 

The Hardware Used by SQL Server Versus HANA

SAP has their customers purchase the largest possible hardware specs for HANA. It is impossible that SQL Server had anywhere near the same spec as the box that was used for HANA. It follows logically that HANA significantly underperforms its hardware specification. We addressed the inability (or lack of interest) by IT directors to account for the percentage of the performance boost was accounted for by hardware as we covered in How Much is Hardware Responsible for S/4HANA’s Benefits? 

Ahmed Azmi offers the following take on this topic.

The only way to compare the performance of 2 DB systems is to run them both on the same hardware. If you run HANA and SQL Server on the exact same hardware, SQL Server will outperform HANA by a wide margin. Give me any database system and I can boost its performance by an order of magnitude simply by upgrading the hardware. If you spend a million dollars on memory and processor acceleration, you can make any database faster. It’s just a matter of throwing more hardware (money) at it.

As for “in memory” type processing, Microsoft added this to SQL Server back in 2016 as can be seen in the graphic below.

What is HANA?

HANA is two things, and a third thing that is an emergent property of the first two things:

  • The Hardware: New hardware, using both high-end RAM and SSDs to push out any spinning disks.
  • The Software: A database designed with column-oriented data table store, which is customized for reading access (i.e., for analytics).
  • The Hardware Software Interaction: The interaction between the column-oriented data and the memory. This is a well-known feature of the interaction between memory and data stored in as columns which we cover in the article How HANA is Such a Fast Database (For Analytics).

But a major issue, which should be obvious, is that SAP is a software company, and makes none of the hardware that HANA uses. However, SAP is taking credit for performance increases that don’t have anything to do with SAP. And they have nothing to do with the work or innovation of any other database vendor either. However, SAP is the most aggressive in combining the hardware improvement story with the changed software (the database) and allocating all of the credit to SAP, or the software vendor.

Yes, Adding More Expensive Hardware Increases Performance

Also, this is not to say that any system or database that is placed onto more expensive hardware will not improve in speed.

That is always the case.

And here arises the problem in differentiating just what the hardware “bump” is doing versus the overall HANA “bump.” HANA is a combination of hardware (RAM and SSD replacing spinning disks) with a column-oriented table design.

Our Interaction with HANA’s Performance

Recently we received the following message on HANA performance from someone with first-hand experience with HANA.

“I rather like HANA. We migrated from Oracle to HANA… and I like it very much, although I think it would be so much better on different hardware than what we have.”

There was particular hardware that was purchased that our contact would have preferred to be from another vendor. We won’t get into the hardware as that would be a different article.

Our contact when on to laud HANA’s performance for planning runs. The software that was residing on HANA, in this case, was supply chain planning software. And our contact reported a 30 to 50% improvement in planning runtimes.

Isolating the Performance Benefit of the Hardware from the Performance Benefit of the Software

Upon consideration of this improvement, I began to think of what we know that HANA improves regarding performance. And its primary benefit is read access.

Read access is very intensively used in analytics; however, with a planning system. The load is to the memory and the processor for a planning run.

Therefore the question is, why would HANA’s column-oriented design improve the performance of this type of processing?

I asked if it was not likely that the performance was not due to the columns oriented design (which only provide a performance benefit in reading operations) but is instead due to the hardware (the extra RAM and SSD?)

Our contact commented that

“Performance management in the past consisted of optimizing the data flows between CPU, memory, and disk. With in-memory computing, disk I/O has become irrelevant and things that plagued us in the past like disk-layout, RAID configuration, I/O hot-spots, redo-log I/O performance, concurrent/direct I/O and tricky OS settings like IBM’s I/O queue depth have all gone away now.”

But we would point out that these things are true when any system is moved to being entirely in memory.

That is when the more expensive hardware is added.

HANA Efficiency Level with Hardware

There is a lot of discussion by SAP how HANA is so fast. But there is very little information around how well HANA addresses the hardware that it is given. SAP stated that it had the developed the fastest database in the world, and done so on the first version of HANA. But then, HANA has been continually “innovated” since its introduction. HANA is known as one of the most patched databases, and this along with several other factors has to lead to HANA being maintenance heavy, which is accounted for in the Brightwork research A Study into SAP HANA’s TCO.

Information from some sources indicates that HANA requires significantly more hardware than do competing databases to return similar performance results. This would suggest that HANA was not designed as well as competing databases regarding how it addresses hardware resources. And these data points that are available to us are recent, so it can be argued that it was because HANA is in its first version. But let us remember, SAP claimed that HANA was the world’s fastest database in its first release. This performance promoted Jon Appleby of Bluefin Solutions (an SAP consultancy) to state that…

“Oracle if finished on SAP,”

..as we coved in the article How SAP Has Quietly Changed its Strategy on HANA and Oracle. 

This fits into comments that SAP uses regarding HANA’s “innovation.”

SAP has converted the term “innovation” into the frequent updates required to patch problem areas, basically to try to catch up to other databases.

Why Hasso Would Like Customers to Upgrade their Hardware

SAP, and Hasso Plattner, in particular, have made a significant point of emphasis that companies need to upgrade their hardware. In four books on in-memory computing, Hasso has stated that companies don’t understand how much it is beneficial to have all of this performance. However, it should be remembered that all of this advice regarding adding hardware is within the context of adding expensive hardware to SAP in particular.

However, the observations cataloged up to this point demonstrate that HANA is not as capable of using more expensive hardware than competing offerings. Furthermore, the inefficiency with which HANA can do things like utilize processors is quite weak. Therefore, the question arises whether SAP is prompting customers to buy such high hardware specifications to compensate for this issue.

Hasso and SAP Oversimplifying

Furthermore, Hasso and SAP are providing an oversimplified perspective on hardware, speed and decision making. Hasso has stated that decisions in health care, surgeons must be made instantaneously, and HANA will be part of that. This is untrue as is covered in the article How Accurate Was Hasso Plattner and Fortune on HANA?. Even in an ER environment, the orientation is to stabilize the patients. Scheduling operating rooms and the right personnel for specialized procedures takes weeks. There is a whole chain of events that take place that the database will not speed up much. I happen to perform extensive forecasting testing, which is very processing intensive. But I can simulate a forecasting scenario for a large company’s data set using just a well-powered laptop. I think I cost me around $1500 at the time. The software I use makes excellent use of quite inexpensive hardware.

Many examples could be provided. And for those that are less interested in the details per se, the result is that more complexities go into the performance equation that what SAP presents to corporate buyers.

Introduction to HANA Development and Test Environments

Hasso Plattner has routinely discussed how HANA simplifies environments. However, the hardware complexity imposed by HANA is overwhelming to many IT departments. This means that to get the same performance of other databases, HANA requires not only far more hardware but far more hardware maintenance.

Development and testing environments are always critical, but with HANA, the issue is of particular importance. The following quotation explains the alterations within HANA.

“Taking into account, that SAP HANA is a central infrastructure component, which faced dozens of Support Packages, Patches & Builds within the last two years, and is expected to receive more updates with the same frequency on a mid-term perspective, there is a strong need to ensure testing of SAP HANA after each change.”

The Complications of So Many Clients and Servers

HANA uses a combination of clients and servers that must work in unison for HANA to work. This brings up complications, i.e., a higher testing overhead when testing any new change to any one component. SAP has a process for processing test cases to account for these servers.

“A key challenge with SAP HANA is the fact, which the SAP HANA Server, user clients and application servers are a complex construct of different engines that work in concert. Therefore, SAP HANA Server, corresponding user clients and applications servers need to be tested after each technical upgrade of any of those entities. To do so in an efficient manner, we propose the steps outlined in the subsequent chapters.”

Leveraging AWS

HANA development environments can be acquired through AWS at reasonable rates. This has the extra advantage that because of AWS’s elastic offering, volume testing can be performed on AWS’s hardware without having to purchase the hardware. Moreover, the HANA AWS instance can be downscaled as soon as the testing is complete. The HANA One offering allows the HANA licenses to be used on demand. This is a significant value-add as sizing HANA has proven to be extremely tricky.

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One cannot observe the benefit of HANA without taking into account the more expensive and more modern hardware that HANA brings along with it. SAP proposes that its combination of using column-oriented tables along with more recent and costly hardware leads to a number of different performance benefits. However, adding more expensive equipment to any solution does not require SAP. That is high-speed RAM, and SSD can be purchased without contacting SAP. It can be installed without contacting SAP. And the performance will improve. Furthermore, switching out old hardware for new hardware is one of the fastest ways to improve performance, and not only do you not need SAP, but you also don’t need Deloitte or Accenture, and other HANA devotees to enable this.

As a control, one must know the benefits of HANA versus the benefits of adding more expensive hardware to an existing solution and not employing HANA. Companies that allow SAP to take credit for what is a premium hardware configuration are fooling themselves.

Furthermore, the hardware component is the lowest cost portion of HANA.


  • Migrating a current solution to new hardware is the lowest effort of migrations.
  • It does not require a reimplementation of software.
  • It does not require purchasing a new database license from SAP.
  • It is the fastest migration—the data points we have indicated that a HANA implementation takes on average 1.25 years. But a real hardware upgrade is a small fraction of that time.

Why put off what will be in many cases over 1/2 of the benefits of HANA for 1.5 years?

A substantial portion of the overall benefit of HANA can be obtained by merely installing HANA type hardware with the existing database.

It is difficult to see how HANA can match the SQL Server’s performance, given the difference in hardware specification used by HANA. What is impressive about this is that HANA by far the most expensive database of any of the databases that it competes against, and SQL Server is considered the “budget” commercial RDBMS. At this large price discrepancy, SQL Server would further outperform HANA as its low cost would leave more budget to have an even larger hardware specification than HANA.

However, this is not the story; you will hear if you listen to SAP or SAP consulting firms. Yet in the over nine years since HANA’s introduction (this article was updated in September 2019), SAP has yet to produce a benchmark that validates SAP’s claims. This is covered in the article Issues with SD HANA Benchmarks. A new benchmark was created by SAP to cover up this issue as we cover in the article The Hidden Issues with BW EML Benchmarks.

Observe the claims of performance superiority in the following video and our analysis of each point.

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How SAP Copied the VW Condescension Argument with HANA

Executive Summary

  • When VW denied its emission cheating, it used the condescension argument.
  • SAP deployed this same strategy against those that questioned their claims around HANA.


When SAP began aggressively promoting HANA around 2012, it made an enormous number of false claims. VW did something very similar with its supposedly new “clean diesel” technology. In this article, we will review how this strategy works.

The VW Versus University of West Virginia Confrontation

The entirety of the budget that the University of West Virginia (UWV) received to test VW’s emission system was $70,000, which was obtained from the International Council on Clean Transportation. This test budget eventually led to a $22 billion settlement paid out by VW.

Image from Fortune and West Virginia University Center For Alternative Fuels, Engines and Emissions. The most important aspect of this rigging was that it tested the car while on the road and not in a lab. The device was powered by a small Honda generator. 

This is the emission testing equipment that caught VW.

“Volkswagen has admitted in court documents that it never expected anyone to test its cars on the road, where the illegal software would not work. Part of the difficulty is that measuring the emissions of a moving vehicle is a significant engineering challenge.” – New York Times

Volkswagen advertised its highly polluting cars as being lower emission than a Prius.

Just like any SAP video, this video is highly deceptive. It makes entirely false claims around the cleanliness of their diesel system. Diesel is an inherently dirty fuel because it is not refined. The only way thus far to manage the pollution of diesel is to use a liquid system to capture the emissions from the engine. This liquid must then be switched out. 

“Unlike in Germany, the Volkswagen Group of America ran a high-gloss marketing campaign making VW and Audi diesel cars out to be super-environmental. One famous Audi commercial, which ran during the world’s most expensive TV slot, the live broadcast of the Super Bowl, showed America being terrorized by “green police.” A shiny white diesel Audi breaks out of an “eco-check” roadblock and speeds off. The message was: The consumption and emission values of a VW or Audi diesel car were just as good as Toyota’s Prius hybrid, but with superior engine power and performance.” – Spiegel 

VW convinced ecological publications of its technology.

“In late 2008 a publication called Green Car Journal compared the five finalists of its annual Green Car of the Year award. “Fulfilling this growing desire for vehicles with better fuel economy and overall environmental performance is no easy thing,” it noted. “Rising to the top is the 2009 Volkswagen Jetta TDI.” The car was the winner because its “groundbreaking clean diesel” engine managed to meet America’s “stringent tailpipe emissions standards” while also delivering “admirable fuel efficiency,” “satisfying performance,” and “a very reasonable” price.” – Fortune

VW was caught by the California Air Resources Board of cheating, the conclusion of an investigation that was initiated based upon the emission testing results at UWV. Yet for over a year, VW simply continued to tell the regulators that they “did not understand their technology.”

“Volkswagen employees manipulated not only the engine software, but also generated reams of false or misleading data to hide the fact that millions of vehicles had been purposely engineered to deceive regulators and spew deadly gases into the air.” – New York Times

Similarities of Unrealistic Expectations Set by Executives

One of the similarities between SAP HANA and VW’s “clean diesel” was the unrealistic expectations set by executives. This is something we have documented at length within SAP where the executives are simply divorced from reality and make statements at SAP conferences and in comments to financial analysts that are simply impossible.

Ridiculous Claims by SAP About HANA

Claim Maker
Specific Claim
Brightwork Accuracy Estimate
Hasso Plattner
HANA is zero latency
Bill McDermott
HANA runs 100,000x faster than any competing technology.
John Appleby
(Was not employed by SAP at the time, but was a primary shill for SAP and HANA at the time of the statement.)
SAP is finished on the Oracle database
Vishal Sikka
Running genetic algorithms in HANA is critical for finding a cure to cancer
Steve Lucas
HANA allows workers to work between 10 and 10,000x faster.

Review Vishal Sikka’s statement about HANA and genetic algorithms in the following video.

And the following quotation describes the same issue at VW, entirely unrealistic executives that drove their subordinates to cheat to satisfy their bosses.

“The pressure seemed to intensify inside VW. It wasn’t “acceptable to admit anything is impossible,” a company whistleblower told Jones Day, according to the Süddeutsche Zeitung. “Instead of telling management that they couldn’t meet the parameters, the decision was taken to manipulate. No one had the courage to admit failure. Moreover, the engine developers felt secure because there was no way of detecting the deceit with the testing technology that existed at the time.” It was, the whistleblower said, “an act of desperation.”” – Fortune

Explaining Why HANA’s Progress Towards its Goals Has Been So Slow

We have argued that HANA has developed so slowly since its introduction in 2011, because its original design parameters were set by Hasso Plattner, who both did not know enough to design a database, and set impossible design goals for HANA. The engineers and programmers have not been able to tell Hasso that he was mistaken.

The Condescension Defense

Those that questioned SAP’s claims around HANA were repeatedly told that they did not get it; they did not understand what a game changer HANA’s technology was. As we covered in the article Is SAP’s Warm Data Tiering for HANA New? SAP’s new explanation of how HANA memory optimization works, entirely contradicts their earlier statements about all data being placed into memory. This means that SAP never had anything that was new or different from the pre-existing database technology.

Using the Pivot

If you are like SAP or Deloitte, you find yourself making a lot of false statements. And if you tell stories that end up not coming true, you eventually have to pivot to a different topic.

It goes like this.

  1. A is the important topic.
  2. Then what you are not “getting” is that the real topic is B, not A. (here the proponent combines the pivot with condescension, implying that you were not paying attention rather than them getting caught red-handed.)
  3. Moreover, now that you have figured out that B is false, the topic I want to talk about is C.

When I have been censored on SAP projects, invariably the criticism was not on the topic’s details, but that I was “focusing on the wrong thing.” This happens when I uncover a major error made some individual in management who wants that covered up. At that point, they prefer you redirect your efforts to “important things.”

Let’s take a look at the Volkswagen case. Volkswagen was caught red-handed by the University of West Virginia pollution testing lab.

For a year, Volkswagen stonewalled UWV and stated:

“You just don’t understand out the technology.”

Finally, when pushed against a wall, they were forced to admit the entire diesel pollution trap they came up with was a sham. (although it always sounded fishy, diesel emission cleaning systems up to that point required liquid, but Volkswagen’s didn’t) It’s important to know that Volkswagen almost did not get caught. They stonewalled everyone incredibly effectively.

SAP proponents did this when they ran into a logical cul de sack on defending SAP’s claims on HANA performance claims. They pivoted to HANA “not being just a database” and moved to another series of false statements. This was prefaced with “the thing you don’t understand.” Again, the intelligence of this maneuver is that the technology changes the entire dynamic. It is the person researching the topic that is at fault. Not the faulty information. Not people that released the faulty information. But here is something I learned from a lot of debates. Check into the next thing that the person proposes. Usually, that will end up being false too. People who make false statements don’t make just one. They make many. That is why, in my view, one wrong statement is so damning. It may seem like too small of a sample size, but it has proven to be a reliable guide.

Why SAP Needs to Continually Pivot to New Subjects

It is not only SAP consulting companies that have a very low accuracy regarding SAP, but the vast majority of SAP consultants individually. And if the pressure were to come from their employer, I would estimate the vast majority would say anything. People tend to bend to pressure very quickly protect their jobs. It must be understood that Deloitte, Accenture, Infosys partners are continually instructing their employees to lie.

The phrasing is the following:

“If the clients thinks A, then we won’t get the follow-on business, so you have to tell them B.”

So it’s not stated as a lie, it is indicated as something necessary to meet a goal. Therefore, here the person getting you to lie, lies in how they frame you telling a lie so that you see it as lying for the benefit of a “team.” That is you don’t want to let the team down and not allow it to accomplish its objectives.

People that make false statements must always be in motion, never providing any evidence for any of the statements but sort of like a shark, continually proposing new things to pivot or transition away from the old thing. I noticed this with such prevalence in my debates on HANA that I outlined the strategy in the following article called How to Deflect That You Were Wrong About HANA.

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HANA is an intriguing story because it shows that with enough marketing, a product can be sold entirely based upon false information. SAP had to lie so aggressively to push out existing databases. It has had to rig benchmarks because nothing of what SAP claimed about HANA’s performance could be proven in reality as we covered in The Hidden Issue With the SD Benchmarks. 

It is essential to consider that like VW; SAP told everyone that “you did not understand our technology” when told their proposals were not feasible. For example, the idea of loading all data into memory is illogical. Moreover, SAP further has proposed that Big Data can also be loaded into memory — which is not going to happen, and at HANA’s pricing, is never going to happen.

This description provided by SAP regarding tiered warm data is an attempt to reset the expectations of HANA, but without being caught for lying. This is why they had to create a whole new way of describing how the data is managed and stays far away from using the term memory optimization.

Financial Disclosure

Financial Bias Disclosure

Neither this article nor any other article on the Brightwork website is paid for by a software vendor, including Oracle, SAP or their competitors. As part of our commitment to publishing independent, unbiased research; no paid media placements, commissions or incentives of any nature are allowed.

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“The numbers also reflect genuine rage at VW. An extraordinary number of educated middle-class or affluent plaintiffs feel deliberately snookered on a subject they are passionate about.

Says Cabraser: Diesel buyers are “looking for the sweet spot between high mileage, performance, and environmental responsibility. They read Consumer Reports, do comparison shopping, do the math. They were highly invested in these vehicles … They were attempting to protect and preserve the environment.”

But the company’s new worldwide CEO, Matthias Müller, infuriated regulators with legalistic hedging and excuses in an interview with National Public Radio in January. “It was a technical problem,” he told NPR. “We had not the right interpretation of the American law … We didn’t lie. We didn’t understand the question first.”

VW’s misbehavior did not come out of nowhere. The company has a history of scandals and episodes in which it skirted the law. Each time—till now—it has escaped without dire consequences.

VW has a legacy as a quasi-state entity that has long steamrolled regulators there. The company and the auto industry are so crucial to Germany that Chancellor Angela Merkel has repeatedly intervened to stave off or weaken emission regulations.

The company has acknowledged and even apologized for the fact that its diesels used dual-strategy software worldwide. (It has largely blamed a handful of rogue engineers.)

Europe has favored diesels and looked the other way when automakers—including but hardly limited to VW—game the system. Emissions Analytics, a U.K.-based consulting company, says it has tested the real-world emissions of more than 400 diesel cars. Only five (including one Volkswagen) actually met the standard they were licensed to, according to CEO Nick Molden. “On average, diesels were emitting four times the regulated maximum,” he says. “Volkswagen was in the middle of the pack.”

In 2011, after government researchers conducted a series of those tests, the European Commission found that diesel cars were spewing as much as seven times more NOx on actual roads than they were in the lab. Other experiments—for both gasoline and diesel cars—revealed similar results. (The discrepancies have been increasing. In 2001, European cars of all sorts were getting 7% fewer miles per gallon on the road than they demonstrated on the dynamometer. By 2014 the gap had widened to 40%.)

Then there are the informal connections: Gerhard Schröder, who was Chancellor before Merkel, and Sigmar Gabriel, who is currently her vice chancellor, have both served as VW directors in their function as governors of Lower Saxony.

More than 110,000 of VW’s worldwide labor force of 589,000 work at its immense headquarters in Wolfsburg and four other plants in Lower Saxony.

That employee base has helped give VW massive clout. Time and again the German auto-industry—the largest in the country—has been able to brandish the threat of job losses if legislation contrary to its interests is passed. The result: a patchwork of regulation watered down to the point of meaninglessness.

In July 2015 the EPA ran out of patience. It issued an ultimatum: The agency would not certify any of the VW’s 2016 model year 2.0-liter diesels until it received a credible explanation for what CARB was finding.

The world learned of the scandal about two weeks later, when the EPA issued a formal notice of violation relating to nearly 500,000 2.0-liter diesel cars—stretching across seven model years and three generations of exhaust-treatment configuration.

On Nov. 2 the EPA issued another notice of violation—this one for five models of Audi, the Porsche Cayenne, and the VW Touareg. Their engines were developed by Audi engineers in Ingolstadt, Germany, about 300 miles south of Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg facility, where the first group of purported bad-apple engineers worked. That means two groups of engineers were allegedly breaking the law in parallel for seven years, with seemingly little in common except the upper-level executives they answered to.”


“Volkswagen eventually updated the software in 280,000 vehicles. Afterward, the cars polluted less than they had, but the upgrade did not remove the illegal software code or bring emissions to within legal limits. In fact, Volkswagen brazenly used the recall to enhance the ability of the software to recognize when a car was being tested.

CARB demanded that Volkswagen show it the software code that governed the emissions control system in the new 2016 models, which were already rolling off assembly lines. CARB also wanted to see the code in older models, so it could do a before-and-after comparison. If Volkswagen failed to comply with its request, CARB said, the agency would refuse to approve the 2016 models for sale in California.

That was a serious threat. If a company cannot get approval to sell its cars in California, for all intents and purposes it can’t sell them anywhere in the United States. A dozen other states, including New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland and most of New England follow California’s clean air standards. No vehicle can be a success in America if it is banned from so many states.

But there was an important distinction between Volkswagen’s behavior and that of other companies caught cheating. In the past, carmakers had almost always acquiesced immediately when confronted with evidence of emissions violations and cooperated with regulators.

Volkswagen had taken a far different approach. By August 2015, the company had spent more than a year procrastinating, providing regulators with false, misleading or incomplete information. It had carried out a recall that did not deliver the promised improvements. The company had continued to sell cars with illegal software, including 2015 models.

In 2009, for example, the German government amended its rules so that inspections of emissions performance would be based solely on readings from a car’s own “onboard diagnostic” system, effectively ceding total control to the automakers.

As word spread inside Volkswagen that the regulators knew about the illegal software, employees began trying to cover their tracks. At an Aug. 31 meeting, an in-house lawyer suggested that engineers in attendance should check their documents. Several of those present interpreted the comment as a signal that they should delete anything related to the emissions issue in the United States. In the weeks that followed 40 employees at Volkswagen and the company’s Audi division destroyed thousands of documents.

Europe had taken a different approach. Diesel was noticeably cheaper and more plentiful than gasoline, a crucial advantage in a region lacking in oil. Having signed the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, European governments were also more focused on climate change and the reduction of greenhouse gases, especially CO2.  Good fuel economy—the diesel engine’s long suit—reduces CO2 emissions. EU states started to tax vehicles according to their CO2 output. And they placed less importance on NOx and carcinogenic soot, which diesels produce in higher quantities than gas engines.

The job of executing on Pischetsrieder’s vision of a hit U.S. diesel car fell to a group of engineers in Wolfsburg. Their key challenge was designing an engine that could satisfy America’s stringent NOx regulations without sacrificing performance or fuel economy, while remaining competitive in sticker price.

iesel trucks have long used a costly and bulky NOx-suppression method known as selective catalytic reduction. SCR involves squirting an ammonia-infused fluid, urea, into the exhaust, which converts the NOx into nitrogen, CO2, and water.

By August 2007 the deal to use Daimler’s technology had been scrapped. It’s unclear precisely why, though some accounts have posited vanity: Volkswagen wanted its own system.

But the biggest selling point was that this high-performance diesel was clean. This engine had a different technology than VW had previously used to reduce emissions, a solution called the lean NOx trap. The technical details don’t really matter. The bottom line is that the engineers couldn’t get it to work, at least not without unacceptable consequences for fuel economy or drivability.

Like his mentor, Winterkorn had outsize ambitions. One of his first acts as CEO was to unveil a plan to overtake both General Motors and Toyota by 2018 to become the world’s No. 1 automaker, “not just in units, but in profitability, innovation, customer satisfaction, everything,” as he put it. Winterkorn wanted everything.

As soon as Schwarzenegger left the meeting, it seems, Merkel pounced on Nichols and said, “The strict nitrogen oxide limits in California are damaging German carmakers,” Nichols told the publication. “I never experienced a similar intervention against our environmental laws by a politician either before or after.” The lobbying yielded nothing. (A spokesperson for Merkel did not respond to requests for comment.)

Roughly three years had passed since VW had begun its deception. The engineers viewed the ruse as a stopgap measure, Volkswagen has suggested, and hoped to abandon it when better technologies became available. Now, in 2011, instead of stopping or slowing down, the company intensified the misbehavior. Volkswagen introduced a new generation of exhaust configuration, which used the more tried-and-true SCR system, in some models.

VW wanted each tank of urea to last at least 16,000 kilometers, so it could be replaced when the owner came in for a routine servicing and oil change. By installing a defeat device, the urea was conserved sufficiently to meet this goal—although it meant belching illegally high levels of NOx.”


“Hemanth began doing the math. He worked out that a budget of $200,000 would be enough to test three or four German diesel cars and their emissions technology. The center was awarded the contract, but given a budget of just $70,000.

The German carmakers had two ways of lowering NOx emissions. One involved something called a Lean NOxTrap and the other relied on selective catalytic reduction (SCR). Both reduced NOx levels but also had some major drawbacks.

The second method is less efficient but at least it doesn’t require an AdBlue tank. A NOx trap, or adsorber, chemically binds NOx during engine operation. When the adsorber capacity is saturated, diesel fuel is injected to purge it, with the NOx made to desorb into nitrogen. The drawback is that the technology only works at sufficiently high temperatures and entails a high fuel consumption.”


“Since the deception came to light last year, Mr. Carder, 46, has achieved a degree of celebrity not usually accorded to vehicle emissions experts. Time magazine named him to its annual list of the world’s 100 most influential people, alongside Nicki Minaj, Vladimir Putin and Pope Francis.

But fame does not necessarily equal riches, or even stability, in the world of academia.”


“The conclusion is that Daimler, BMW, Audi, Porsche and Volkswagen often no longer compete with one another. Instead, they secretly cooperate, very closely, in fact, in the same way one would normally expect of the subsidiaries of a single company to work together, as something like a “German Cars Inc.” — or a cartel.

And then there are the millions of owners of diesel cars. In an almost bizarre way, they too are victims of the German auto cartel. For the first time, there is proof that it was agreements among these five automakers that ultimately ensured that emissions from diesel vehicles were not cleaned as effectively as would have been technically possible. This all began with the cartel of the five automakers.

“The European Commission is currently examining the auto cartel case. It has seized records from the participating companies and has begun questioning witnesses. Last Wednesday, DER SPIEGEL extensively questioned the participating companies about the cartel accusations

The cartel authorities face a Sisyphean task in their investigation of the auto cartel. There were more than 60 working groups in which the automakers cooperated. “We assume,” Volkswagen wrote in its statement to the authorities, “that more than 1,000 relevant meetings took place in the last five years.”

More than 60 working groups and more than 1,000 meetings.

This has already come back to haunt them, and in dramatic fashion. The diesel scandal would not have taken shape as it did, and perhaps not even at all, without the agreements among German automakers. It is not the work of a few criminal managers in the Volkswagen Group, but ultimately the result of secret agreements within the entire German automobile industry. DER SPIEGEL has already reported on the initial signs of collusion.

There is a reason for the agitation among the chassis managers: The tank, a simple plastic part, performs a key function in cleaning nitric oxides. The larger the tank, the more AdBlue can be injected, and the more effectively nitric oxides can be reduced. This reduces the number of times the driver has to refill the AdBlue tank. These are the advantages of a large tank. It would also make it easier to comply with stricter nitric oxide limits, not just on the test bench but also on the road.

But the large tank also has its drawbacks. It is more expensive than a small tank and takes up more room. This was why the sales experts opposed the use of a large tank. They preferred to use the space for the loudspeakers of high-end stereo systems, which could be sold to customers as expensive options.

The only problem is that eight liters of AdBlue are not even enough for a range of 6,000 kilometers, provided the manufacturers wanted to clean exhaust gases as required by regulations.

None of the players hit upon the obvious idea of installing larger tanks, thereby attaining the competitive advantage of being able to market cleaner cars. On the contrary. In a May 2014 email, Audi urgently warned against any company going it alone. The need to inject larger and larger amounts of AdBlue into the exhaust gas system, Audi wrote, could “expand into an arms race with regard to tank sizes, which we should continue to avoid at all costs.”

If one manufacturer had installed larger AdBlue tanks, licensing and regulatory authorities would probably have become suspicious. The obvious question would have been why that one company’s vehicles needed so much more urea to clean the exhaust gases, while the other manufacturers’ cars supposedly managed with significantly less AdBlue.

A year ago, truck manufacturers Daimler, Volvo/Renault, Iveco and DAF were ordered to pay €2.9 billion in fines, because the companies had coordinated pricing for their trucks for years. Only one company in the industry got off scot-free: MAN. Although the Munich-based company was also part of the truck cartel, it had offered its services as a key witness early on.”


“The EU bureaucracy was one of the first to be informed, through its research organizations, about the high nitric oxide emissions of the VW vehicle fleet. In 2007, experts with European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) tested the emissions from operating diesel cars. Additional tests using the so-called PEMS method were performed in 2011 and 2013. The results were the same each time: Nitric oxide (NOX) emissions were several times higher than the levels measured in type approval tests in the laboratory.

Volkswagen was already making an unfavorable impression at the time. The biggest nitric oxide emitter in the 2011 and 2013 tests was a VW Multivan with a diesel engine. This emerges from the list of names of the car models involved, which were not published at the time but has been obtained by SPIEGEL ONLINE.

By that point, the authorities should have been addressing the problem with great urgency: The air quality in many large EU cities was miserable. In 2008, for example, 296 of 821 zones in a total of 21 EU countries reported fine particulate matter levels in the air in excess of allowable thresholds.

The auto industry tried to throw sand into the eyes of EU officials. They blamed the large discrepancies between laboratory and road tests on the testing procedures. And they argued that people drive differently on the road, and that wind and rolling friction also contributed to the discrepancies.

This citation in the EU documents is especially damning: After the VW scandal came to light, investigative commissions appointed in various EU countries encountered a “defeat device” in cars from almost every manufacturer that drastically reduced emission control at lower or higher temperatures.

This is true, but VW only acted after US authorities had threatened not to approve the company’s 2016 models. This, in turn, was a result of the massive discrepancies between laboratory results and actual emissions. The EU was well informed about these discrepancies, and had been so for years. So why didn’t the Europeans react as strongly as the Americans?

For one thing, there is the matter of European regionalism. The member states, and not the Commission, are responsible for car type approval, and they were apparently only too willing to look the other way when it came to emissions. Once a national registration authority has rubber-stamped a car, the manufacturer is off the hook. This is handled differently in the United States, where the automaker can be held liable if its products are retroactively shown not to be in compliance with the law.”

What Do SAP Consultants Think HANA Zero Latency Means?

Executive Summary

  • In an effort to contradict our research conclusions on SAP HANA, one SAP resource attempted to redefine the term latency.
  • What happened after this SAP consultant was questioned on this point?


SAP resources are desperate to undermine Brightwork Research & Analysis. And they come up with creative ways to undermine our conclusions. This is one such misguided example.

Mohamed Judi Quotation on the Definition of Zero Latency

Let me give you a couple of examples why I can’t take you and your organization very seriously: 1. You have completely misunderstood the term “zero-latency”. It seems due to your lack of knowledge and your predetermined intentions to slander SAP, you understood that “zero-latency.” For your own benefit, “zero-latency” is referred to the fact that there is no need to move data for reporting. The same data that end users save in S/4 will be used for reporting. No latency in moving data is needed anymore. It is not the time that the user is expecting for his/her request to be executed by the platform. Any junior practitioner with little knowledge in networking and databases would have understood it correctly.– Mohamed Judi

Our Response

Well apparently PC Mag is incorrect also. Here is their defintion. “Definition of: zero latency (1) Having no delay between the time a request is initiated and the response is given. See latency.

Hmmmm….that seems to contradict your explanation. Secondly it is entirely obvious from the context that Hasso meant the PC Mag definition. You appear to have created a new definition of latency for yourself. Also notice SAP’s use of the term. “Access real-time operational and strategic insights with near-zero latency.” They switched it to “near-zero” because “zero” was too idiotic and they were getting laughed at for it. I will accept your apology on this. Please offer it in the next response. “

Mohamed Judi did not offer a response.

SAP consultants like Mohamed Judi will tell any lie to try to prop up SAP. This is why fact checking is so important.

Advice on Enjoying the Quiz

To see the full screen just select the lower right-hand corner and expand. Trust us, expanding makes the experience a whole lot more fun.


Financial Disclosure

Financial Bias Disclosure

Neither this article nor any other article on the Brightwork website is paid for by a software vendor, including Oracle, SAP or their competitors. As part of our commitment to publishing independent, unbiased research; no paid media placements, commissions or incentives of any nature are allowed.

What We Do and Research Access

Using the Diagram

Hover over each bullet or plus sign to see more explanation. To move to a different bullet point, just “hover off” and then hover over the new bullet.


Research Access

  • Do You Need to Access Research in this Area?

    Put our independent analysis to work for you to improve your spend.




Can You Take and Pass the HANA Challenge?

Executive Summary

  • We have devised one of the most difficult challenges in all of IT.
  • To pass it, one must write out the claims made by SAP on HANA.


SAP made many claims about HANA, and one of the most inaccurate was that HANA was not only a database but so many other unrelated items. Therefore we decided to create this challenge.

  1. A database, and zero latency at infinite load. 
  2. A platform
  3. A development environment
  4. A cloud offering
  5. A cloud development environment
  6. An advanced planning system (don’t question it Pedro — but HANA was slated to replace APO – which would be the first application ever replaced by a database in human history)
  7. A Big Data platform
  8. An entirely new application architecture.
  9. A coffee maker
  10. A popcorn machine

I have been laughing heartily as I have been writing this.

Everything listed above (except the coffee machine and popcorn maker) are real SAP claims.

You cannot repeat the claims made by the HANA crowd and have any background in software and databases and not begin laughing. Just try to type out the claims.

But it does not stop there. As pointed out by Rolf Paulsen, HANA was not only a database but multiple database “types,” which Rolf accurately lists as the following:

  1. 1a. A relational database for all OLAP use cases
  2. 1b. A relational database for all OLTP use cases
  3. 1c. A NoSQL database
  4. 1d. A graph database
  5. 1e. A geospatial database

Typing this all out without being seized by the natural compulsion to laugh is what we call the “The HANA Challenge.”

Taking Responsibility for Lying to Your Clients

Something that needs to be discussed is how wrong so many people were on HANA. We covered this in the article Who Was Right and Who Was Wrong on HANA?

Now is an excellent time for all of those that had no idea what they were talking about or lied for SAP to so many customers to come clean and admit it. You can look in the mirror and repeat three times.

“I am a parrot for SAP.”

“I repeat things I don’t know are true.”

Who Needs To Do This?

That includes Gartner, Accenture consultants, Forrester, the list is quite long.

The HANA Fiasco is not just a matter of not HANA, not meeting its performance claims; this is one of the ridiculous proposals in enterprise software history. I am going to reach out to the Computer History Museum in Mountain View to get HANA listed somehow. Future generations have to know what happened. And we have the quotations documented.

Advice on Enjoying the Quiz

To see the full screen just select the lower right-hand corner and expand. Trust us, expanding makes the experience a whole lot more fun.


Financial Disclosure

Financial Bias Disclosure

Neither this article nor any other article on the Brightwork website is paid for by a software vendor, including Oracle, SAP or their competitors. As part of our commitment to publishing independent, unbiased research; no paid media placements, commissions or incentives of any nature are allowed.

What We Do and Research Access

Using the Diagram

Hover over each bullet or plus sign to see more explanation. To move to a different bullet point, just “hover off” and then hover over the new bullet.


Research Access

  • Do You Need to Access Research in this Area?

    Put our independent analysis to work for you to improve your spend.


TCO Book



Enterprise Software TCO: Calculating and Using Total Cost of Ownership for Decision Making

Getting to the Detail of TCO

One aspect of making a software purchasing decision is to compare the Total Cost of Ownership, or TCO, of the applications under consideration: what will the software cost you over its lifespan? But most companies don’t understand what dollar amounts to include in the TCO analysis or where to source these figures, or, if using TCO studies produced by consulting and IT analyst firms, how the TCO amounts were calculated and how to compare TCO across applications.

The Mechanics of TCO

Not only will this book help you appreciate the mechanics of TCO, but you will also gain insight as to the importance of TCO and understand how to strip away the biases and outside influences to make a real TCO comparison between applications.
By reading this book you will:
  • Understand why you need to look at TCO and not just ROI when making your purchasing decision.
  • Discover how an application, which at first glance may seem inexpensive when compared to its competition, could end up being more costly in the long run.
  • Gain an in-depth understanding of the cost, categories to include in an accurate and complete TCO analysis.
  • Learn why ERP systems are not a significant investment, based on their TCO.
  • Find out how to recognize and avoid superficial, incomplete or incorrect TCO analyses that could negatively impact your software purchase decision.
  • Appreciate the importance and cost-effectiveness of a TCO audit.
  • Learn how SCM Focus can provide you with unbiased and well-researched TCO analyses to assist you in your software selection.
  • Chapter 1:  Introduction
  • Chapter 2:  The Basics of TCO
  • Chapter 3:  The State of Enterprise TCO
  • Chapter 4:  ERP: The Multi-Billion Dollar TCO Analysis Failure
  • Chapter 5:  The TCO Method Used by Software Decisions
  • Chapter 6:  Using TCO for Better Decision Making

Is Bärbel Winkler Correct the Brightwork SAP Layoff Article Was Fake News?

Executive Summary

  • Barbel Winkler of Alfred Kärcher SE & Co. KG stated that Brightwork created fake news with its layoff and HANA coverage.
  • We analyze this article for logic and information provided.


Several months ago, we wrote the article SAP’s Layoffs and a Brightwork Warning on HANA, which went viral and brought down our website several times. In the article, we discussed how the layoffs fit with areas of weakness with SAP we had been writing for years. Surprisingly a rebuttal appeared on the SAP’s blog.

This article is our analysis of this rebuttal.

Connecting the Brightwork Article with Fake News?

Barbel Winkler begins by discussing the topic of fake news.

“In this age of ‘fake news’, which so easily spreads thanks to social media and other outlets, I thought it might be worthwhile to share some resources and pointers of how to avoid accidentally contributing to this epidemic.

What prompted this blog post?

A couple of days ago, I happened upon a new comment posted on Paul Hardy‘s Reasons not to Move to S/4 HANA blog post. The comment links to an article written by Shaun Snapp about SAP’s Layoffs and a Brightwork warning on HANA which I then read. While doing so, I had some ‘warning flags’ go off in my mind as it contained rather emotive language and at least some of the paragraphs read a lot like conspiracy theories.”

Let us review the definition of the term conspiracy.

“A conspiracy is a secret plan or agreement between persons (called conspirers or conspirators) for an unlawful or harmful purpose, such as murder or treason, especially with political motivation,[1] while keeping their agreement secret from the public or from other people affected by it.”

Brightwork’s Article on Layoffs Implied an Unlawful Purpose?

Well, I don’t recall accusing SAP of conspiring to engage in murder or treason. But they do keep these agreements secret from the public.

Now let us look at the definition of a conspiracy theory.

“A “conspiracy theory” is a belief that a conspiracy has actually been decisive in producing a political event of which the theorists strongly disapprove. Another common feature is that conspiracy theories evolve to incorporate whatever evidence exists against them, so that they become, as Barkun writes, a closed system that is unfalsifiable, and therefore “a matter of faith rather than proof””

When has anything I have ever written fall into this category? I will wait for a quote where I stated anything like this.

Is Hasso Plattner’s and SAP’s Marketing of Hasso Plattner’s Fake Ph.D. a Conspiracy Theory?

SAP, for example, I have pointed out, has a large number of consulting firms that will repeat what they say. But does hits produce a “political event?” Also, as opposed to the definition, I provide proof in my claims, so that can’t be an accurate explanation of the research the article which Bärbel Winkler read, or any other article at Brightwork. The story of how Hasso falsified the origins of HANA to put himself in a more elevated position would in no way qualify as a conspiracy theory. Something that is not discussed by Bärbel Winkler, which is a statement made in the article, is that Hasso Plattner has a fake Ph.D. He has for at least a decade and a half been claiming to have a real Ph.D. when he has two honorary PhDs as we covered in the article Does SAP’s Hasso Plattner Have a Ph.D.? Does that claim also read like a conspiracy theory? Because it is easily verified by looking into Hasso Plattner’s Wikipedia page? Did the fact that SAP and Hasso Plattner agreed to mispresent his honorary Ph.D. as a legitimate Ph.D. qualify as a conspiracy theory? Well, not according to the definition listed above, but it is dishonest.

SAP routinely makes exaggerated claims in a variety of dimensions, and they do so because of financial motivations. Not every contradiction of these claims qualifies as a conspiracy theory. Bärbel Winkler seems to have comingled the terms “conspiracy theory” with the term fact checking.

In Bärbel Winkler’s mind, anything that disagrees with the official story presented by SAP is a conspiracy theory.

Is SAP’s Contradiction of Oracle’s Claims Around the Autonomous Database a Conspiracy Theory?

Let us take a look at the article by SAP in Forbes in Forbes Allows SAP to Vent Against the Oracle Autonomous Database for Money. In this article SAP disputes Oracle’s claims about the Autonomous database (which we happen to agree with SAP as we covered in the article How Real is Oracle’s Autonomous Database?). However, is the fact that SAP states that Oracle’s claims about the autonomous database a conspiracy theory? If not, why not? Doesn’t it contradict the official declaration by Oracle, could we not say that SAP is peddling in conspiracy theories — at least if we apply the definition of a conspiracy theory as proposed by Bärbel Winkler.

Given this line of reasoning, couldn’t one say that any position that disagrees with our position is also a conspiracy theory, with the term conspiracy theory being nothing more than an ad hominem rather than a legitimate claim against a contention? How can SAP say that Oracle has exaggerated what Oracle’s autonomous database is capable of, doesn’t this imply a conspiracy on the part of Oracle? Isn’t any contradiction of an official claim require the creation of a conspiracy theory?

More Emotive Language than Say…..Bill McDermott?

Bärbel Winkler spends much more time either associating the article with fake news and talking about a mystery bias (which she can’t prove or even guess to the source) rather than addressing the facts presented in the article. I found the Bärbel Winkler writing style very dull. And it could probably be improved by the use of some emotion. However, I did not let this factor into my analysis of the content. I don’t care much about the writing style, because my focus is the content. And this is not a debate around writing styles. But furthermore, does Bärbel Winkler have a problem with emotion in language?

Let us take a look at the following quote from an article on Bill McDermott.

“But at this point in his story, many readers will be watching for the thunderbolt — his journey had to this point been so straight and direct, so perfectly well-groomed and lucky, so driven by hard work, one becomes uneasy.

And BOOM!  The thunderbolt strikes. His wife Julie, struck by cancer. Suddenly McDermott’s world had limits, exhausting days followed by bad nights. “Alone on that dark hill up in Connecticut, with two little kids depending on me, it was grim, pretty grim.”

Relief came in the form of a call to sunny California from Siebel Systems. His wife’s cancer caught in time, at this point McDermott had feet firmly planted in the tech world, and again, momentum and drive were in his favor.”

Here is Bill McDermott on SAP’s values.

“Throughout our history SAP has been committed to leading with purpose. Our enduring vision is to help the world run better and improve people’s lives. Together, as citizens, companies and countries, we need to be committed to working together to drive greater progress. There is no time to wait. That’s why we are proud to have signed the Compact for Responsive and Responsible Leadership. With shared commitment and resolve, the best days are ahead for the economy, the environment and society as a whole.”

Have I ever told a story or written any analysis with this type of emotion anywhere in any Brightwork article?

Are these quotes from Bill McDermott something that Bärbel Winkler would critique, or is this a heartwarming story or unachieved goals ethical goals emotive, according to Bärbel Winkler?

This book by Bill McDermott is filled with emotive language, far exceeding anything ever written at Brightwork Research & Analysis. Hint, we are researchers with technical expertise, while Bill McDermott is 100% sales and uses emotion to manipulate other people. But the problem with too much emotion is with a research entity and not Bill McDermott.

Based on this, can we expect an extensive critique of the book by Bärbel Winkler, or is Bärbel Winkler afraid of critiquing Bill McDermott? We ask because nearly all SAP resources seem to be petrified of saying anything against Bill, which allows him the freedom to say false things and never is called out for it. I have yet to have gotten any SAP resource to agree or critique McDermott’s comment about HANA being 100,000x faster than any competing technology. SAP resources are petrified of going on record as calling out McDermott’s lies.

Bärbel Winkler’s claim around emotive writing appears to be someone looking to claim the authority of the article based upon a superficial impression. All of Bärbel Winkler can be classified as superficial dislikes. Furthermore, the article states that SAP has been lying for years about its newer products that are supposed to be the future of SAP. SAP is aggressively lying to customers about SAP Cloud, about Leonardo. Is one supposed to stay utterly unemotional about this?

Go With Your Gut?

Bärbel Winkler continues how she relied on her gut to tell her the Brightwork article was fake news.

“Before I could put my gut feeling into words, Paul Hardy had already responded mentioning some of the items I had noticed as well:”

Is Bärbel Winkler having an emotional reaction to the article, or analyzing the content it presents?

First, does Bärbel Winkler have the background to be critiquing the article? Has Bärbel Winkler put the hundreds of hours over more than three years to make this determination if what the article states are true?

In debates with SAP resources on the article, some of the most aggressive detractors of the material have said…

“I don’t know enough about the topic to contradict the article, but I know it must not be true.”

This seems to be where Bärbel Winkler is coming from as well. This is to a researcher like myself an extremely bizarre statement, and correlates to “the articles contradicts my beliefs,” rather than being a statement of any substance.

Interestingly, we analyzed the statements of one of the major proponents of HANA, John Appleby, and found he had an accuracy of less than 6.5%. The Appleby Accuracy Checker: A Study into John Appleby’s Accuracy on HANA. Just that research took more than a week. And it required many hundreds of hours to support that research. There is no other research entity that has put anywhere near this effort into fact-checking the claims made about HANA.

Comment from Paul

“If the articles that Shaun writes were true then everyone who works with SAP should be very worried. However, not everything on the internet is true, as we know.

As it is, the articles read rather like a conspiracy theory i.e. “I am the only one in the world telling the truth, every single other person on the planet are conspiring together to hide the truth”.”

Let us address the issue of the level of concern SAP resources should have.

SAP’s growth stage is over. So in that sense, they should be concerned, but SAP will continue to make a lot of money for many years. But the growth is over because SAP’s products outside of ERP are simply inferior in quality. This is covered in the article How SAP is Now Strip Mining its Customers.

SAP’s Future Growth Prospects

Some of SAP’s non-ERP applications are commercially successful, like SAP BW, but SAP BW is one of our lowest rated BI products. SAP’s acquisitions are mostly not related to SAP’s core. Eight years after the SuccessFactors acquisition, SAP still has not fully integrated SuccessFactors into ECC. SAP has not shown capabilities out of ERP, and this can only be covered up with consulting partnerships for so long. SAP’s implementation of type 2 indirect access is primarily due to desperation for license revenues because SAP cannot meet its revenue targets following the rules.

If there were genuinely competitive market forces, SAP would have shrunk a great deal already. But they are highly protected by a system of consulting or “ecosystem.” (consulting companies that don’t care about what is right for customers) and media and analyst entities (that sell their opinions to SAP). This ecosystem will repeat anything SAP says, no matter how false, just see the Run Simple program for evidence in the article Is SAP’s “Running Simple” Real?

Only Brightwork Speaks the Truth on SAP?

I previously addressed the conspiracy topic. But the quality of information on SAP is terrible. We can trace back the financial bias of nearly every entity that provides information on SAP. And both Paul and Bärbel Winkler have this financial bias as well. Even Nucleus Research, a firm that used to be critical of SAP, has been brought into the fold and now publishes inaccurate information in return for money.

SAP has a standard practice of paying off analyst firms to perform well in a study and then showcasing their good performance in the study without disclosing they paid for the study. Nucleus Research’s conclusion is false; S/4HANA Cloud is not a leader, and in fact, is barely used. Did Bärbel Winkler call this study by Nucleus fake news? Of course, not because it is pro SAP. Bärbel Winkler does not care what is true or false; only what is pro-SAP or negative against SAP. 

But as SAP has Gartner and media entities on the payroll. And as there are so many SAP consulting firms that are repeating whatever SAP says, my argument is yes, very few people speak the truth on SAP. However, I don’t know why this is so shocking. Pharmaceutical companies do very little research; they parasitize the taxpayer-funded research at universities and keep most of the profits themselves. And this is also kept quiet. Financial advisors pretend to look out for their clients. But in the US, only around 10% of them are registered as fiduciaries, which means they are obligated to put their client’s interests ahead of their own. There is a large amount of corruption in economies overall.

Furthermore, as far as telling the truth on SAP, I read an article by Paul on S/4HANA, and he censored the material and used humor to keep from offending SAP.

Let us take a look at one of Paul’s quotes from his article Reasons Not to Move to S/4HANA, to see how much he tells the truth on SAP.

“The PR people keep saying that S/4 HANA is being adopted faster than any other product in SAP’s history and that may be so, but the giant pink elephant in the room is that if (at TECHED for example) the presenter asks for a show of hands as to which organisation is on what release of SAP they are shocked and disappointed to find out just how many are still on older releases. Some are still on 4.6C.

If it is so good, why hasn’t everyone dropped every other project and moved to adopt S/4 HANA like they were buying a hot cake?”

Hmmmm….that seems like an interesting pause going on here, or an unwillingness the connect the dots. So SAP is or is not lying about the number of go-lives?

Is there something Paul would like to say? Because he moves off of the subject right after this. This is an example of Paul, like just about every other SAP resource or information provider not telling the truth or at least the whole truth on SAP. And Paul’s quote here is about as honest as any SAP resource will get. That is, the quote is a complete outlier. Vinnie Mirchandani stated in his book SAP Nation 3.0 that S/4HANA…

“S/4 has not been a runaway success but SAP’s competition has not exactly gone for the jugular either.”

And that is truly an understatement. Also, how is SAP supposed to “go for the jugular?” SAP customers are locked into ECC, and they are not going to move away from ECC.

Let us take a step back to thoroughly analyze the ridiculousness of S/4HANA as the fastest growing product in SAP’s history. For S/4HANA to be the fastest adopted application in SAP’s history, it would have to outpace R/3 in the 1990s. This is the product that made SAP what it is today. S/4HANA has a tiny number of go-lives.

So isn’t SAP’s claim impossible?

That is a mighty big pink elephant Paul is referring to, but it is also known in the common parlance as a straight up lie (by SAP, not Paul). Paul is not lying, but he is changing the subject. SAP has been exaggerating S/4HANA numbers since they introduced S/4HANA as we covered in How Accurate Was SAP on S/4HANA’s Go Live Numbers?

You see, we don’t stop at calling a blatant lie a “pink elephant.” So while Paul did more than most who write about SAP, Paul is concerned about publishing material that is too critical of SAP. And this is most likely for career reasons. We don’t shy away from writing what the research says on SAP.

But the topic brought up here by Paul is not an argument against the article. This is merely the 2nd ad hominem or personal attack.

Let us be sure to keep count.

The first ad hominem was that the article was fake news. I want to address this issue. A trusted contact who reviewed this article pointed out that Bärbel Winkler never directly calls the Brightwork layoff article fake news. But the effect of continually associating the material with fake news is such guilt by association, that I do not see the distinction. Bärbel Winkler, it seems, is trying to have it both ways by setting an overall framework where she creates the association but then gives herself a way out, but being able to say “well I never actually said it.” So there is no reason for me to accept this underhanded tactic. Bärbel Winkler is clearly of the mind that the article is fake news.

The second was that the article seemed to have emotional language. The third was that the article seems conspiratorial.

  1. Fake News
  2. Emotional language
  3. Conspiratorial

We are probably 1/4 of the way through the article, and we have three ad hominems and zero statements addressing the claims in the report.

Brightwork Has Been Incorrect in its Predictions?

“He has been predicting things for many years that keep not happening e.g. SAP ditching HANA, which is rather like the people who keep predicting the end of the world and when it doesn’t happen on the target day, they set a new date.”

We predicted that SAP would have to backtrack on HANA for S/4HANA. Why SAP Will Have to Backtrack on S/4HANA on HANA, which means that SAP will at some point port S/4HANA to AnyDB. However, we never set a date or target date; this would occur, and therefore we never changed a date. How would we know when SAP would change this policy? Check the article, and if you find a date there, be sure to let us know because we can’t find it.

We made the prediction based upon the fact that HANA is limiting the market for S/4HANA. This is the first factual claim made in Bärbel Winkler’s article, and it is incorrect.

Secondly, the analogy to some end of days preacher is not correct. Also, why are our research infused predictions being compared to the predictions of a cult leader who bases their predictions on reading a religious text? This seems to be the fourth ad hominem, which is that Brightwork is similar to a cult rather than a research entity. What is left out is how accurate we have been in our predictions. SAP would love to have our accuracy, which you can check for yourself at A Study into SAP’s Accuracy.

HANA has not seen anywhere near the success predicted by SAP. It is difficult for anyone to deny this is the case.

The point of the article on the layoffs was that layoffs hit HANA particularly hard, and for an apparent reason. The primary point is entirely unaddressed by Bärbel Winkler.

In 2011 SAP claimed that they would be the number two database vendor by 2015

This is a listing from DB Engines that tracks database popularity. Where is HANA? At #20 with roughly 4% of the share of Oracle. Where is SAP Adaptive Server? At #16, with approximately 5% of the share or Oracle.

Does this look like SAP is the #2 database vendor? And this is now four years after 2015. Are Bärbel Winkler or Paul going to critique this prediction, or will this ridiculous prediction go unnoticed, because neither of these individuals holds SAP accountable for false claims due to their financial bias? Both Bärbel Winkler and Paul have analyzed the predictions made by Brightwork and the predictions made by SAP, and have concluded that the accuracy problem resides with Brightwork?

SAP stopped reporting quarterly numbers of HANA back in 2015, as we covered in the article Why Did SAP Stop Reporting HANA Numbers After 2015?

SAP claimed they would become the John Appleby stated that SAP would be

“finished on Oracle,”

as we covered in the article How Accurate Was SAP on SAP Being Finished on Oracle? 

With roughly 7,370 customers according to iDatalabs, and with 1.25% of the database market.

Who looks like they have done a better job predicting the trajectory and growth of HANA, SAP, or Brightwork?

Who is the insane “end of days” preacher in this scenario, Brightwork or SAP and Hasso Plattner?

Contradictory Claims?

Next, Paul accuses Brightwork of making contradictory claims.

“Some of the accusations are contradictory – for example he both accuses Hasso Plattner of designing a rubbish database and at the same time claims Hasso did not design it all, but acquired it from a mysterious un-named company.”

This is a manufactured contradiction.

Let us review the facts.

  1. Hasso Plattner did design a “rubbish database.” And by the way, Hasso Plattner lacks the qualifications to be a database designer. This should be no surprise that this would be the outcome.
  2. I never stated that Hasso did not design some parts of HANA. But the parts that Hasso proposed are the parts that don’t work. Hasso suggested that all tables should be columnar (a significant error that was reversed in SPS08 as we covered in How Accurate Was John Appleby on HANA SPS08? He proposed that all data could be processed in memory, and it doesn’t. He recommended removing all aggregates Is Hasso Plattner and SAP Correct About Database Aggregates? All of these items were terrible ideas and are the subject of frequent lampooning by people that understand databases. But that does not mean that HANA was not based upon pre-existing technology. If the author or Paul had read the link, which is the article Did Hasso Plattner and His Ph.D. Students Invent HANA?, they would have found that HANA was based partially on P*Time and TREX. These were two acquisitions made by SAP roughly a year before Hasso claims to have begun his work on HANA. Although Teradata is suing SAP claiming IP theft that ended up in HANA, as we covered in How True is SAP’s Motion to Dismiss the Teradata Suit. Is the Teradata lawsuit also fake news?

So let us review the 2nd to 3rd factual claims made by the Bärbel Winkler article.

  1. The fact that Hasso designed HANA poorly is contradicted by the fact that Brightwork stated that HANA was based upon acquisitions: (FALSE)
  2. The two acquisitions were mysterious and an unnamed company: (FALSE)

I don’t know Paul personally, but I have read several of his articles, and he is clearly a smart person. However, Paul has not put in the work to research HANA the way that I have. And he is continuously subjected to erroneous information about HANA because of the company he keeps.

Bärbel Winkler Cannot Verify The Article?

“On my own, I cannot really verify how much – if any – truth is actually contained in Shaun Snapp’s article, but just going by the language and emotiveness I would bet on “not really much” being the correct assessment.
How can ‘fake news’ or misinformation be identified?”

Is this not the definition of a stupid statement? Can an article’s accuracy be gauged by its language and emotiveness? And what “language” is Bärbel Winkler going by, because I have no idea how to respond to this as I don’t know what it means. In the ordinary parlance, “language” would mean improper language or swear words. But that can’t be right as the article does not contain any profanity. And how many times is Bärbel Winkler going to discuss her interpretation of the style of writing of the article?

If Bärbel Winkler can’t verify any of the information contained in the article, how is she in an excellent position to claim the report is fake news? The last person to be fact-checking an article or categorizing it as anything is a person who lacks the domain expertise in the subject of the material. This is why I don’t call articles on quantum physics “fake news” because I don’t like the way the article is written.

And not only does Bärbel Winkler not have the domain expertise to verify the article, the other commenters (as we will see) also lack the domain expertise to check the article. However, all of them seem to know that the article if fake news. How convenient, in surveying a group of HANA know-nothings with a 100% SAP bias, Bärbel Winkler has found that an article that is highly critical of SAP and HANA must not be legitimate. Will the next article cover how scientists paid by Exxon don’t agree with global warming? Does no one know where Bärbel Winkler will take this crackerjack method of determining what is “fake news” to next?

Climate Science and Fake News?

“Through my involvement with climate science and the misinformation (aka ‘fake news’) spread in that particular topic area, I’m in touch with researchers who study this very topic. Underestimating the importance to not fall for and accidentally spread ‘fake news’ is not really possible, so here are some pointers of how to verify the credibility of sources and/or articles before sharing them. The information below is from the blog post Threading the Fact-Checking Needle on the Pro-Truth Pledge (PTP) website, using Shaun Snapp’s article as a case study.”

That is curious; I wonder why the conclusion as to who is providing misinformation in climate science is not declared. Because the answer is the misinformation contained in that area is from those on the petrochemical payroll.

Curiously, one can’t tell from the quote, however. Does the author’s position on this topic need to be hidden for some reason? Or is there self-censorship going on here that the author does not want to lose the audience that agrees with Donald Trump that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese? (no not making that up, this is Trump’s explanation)

If you are an author who is afraid even to declare what you mean and who is responsible for false information in the climate area, which is entirely black and white by the way, one has to wonder about the forthrightness of that author.

What follows is Bärbel Winkler following or attempting to follow rules of how to identify fake news from the PTP-Blog.

Rule #1: Is the Brightwork Article Timely?

Is the article timely?

“For the article in question, this one can be answered “Yes” as it uses the recent layoffs from SAP as the hook.

From the PTP-blog:
“Many items may be interesting but if they’re more than a few months old, chances are most of those with whom you would share have moved on to other news. It’s generally best to give these a pass.””

It is difficult to see what currency has to do with whether something is true or false. What about Newton’s theory of gravity? Its origin can be traced back to 1686.

Should we give the theory of gravity a pass?

Rule #2: Does the Brightwork Site Have Credibility?

“Is it published on a site generally agreed to be accurate, precise and reputed for its integrity?

I wasn’t able to find any “credibility” analysis for Shaun Snapp’s Brightworkresearch website, so cannot really answer this with a “Yes”. Even though Shaun Snapp regularly refers to “we” in the article or the tweets shown in the sidebar, I’m not really sure that Brightworkresearch is actually more than a one-man-endeavor (anybody know for sure?).”

What is a credible website in the SAP space? G2Crowd, Gartner, or Forrester?

They may appear credible, but they all take money from SAP, which they do not declare, and the quality of their analysis is quite poor. Many of G2Crowd’s SAP reviews are written by SAP consultants, who are looking to promote SAP products. And G2Crowd serves as lead generation for vendors who pay them. All of this is undisclosed to readers.

Forrester will publish anything that SAP pays them to publish. We cover why we are a far better source on SAP than Gartner or Forrester in the article Why is Brightwork Better than Gartner or Forrester?

Brightwork Research & Analysis is currently composed of Shaun Snapp and Ahmed Azmi, although we occasionally use subcontractors on projects. But we are undoubtedly tiny. But one cannot measure accuracy by size. If one could, then InfoSys or WiPro would be highly credible providers of information on SAP. Does anyone think that is true?

The lack of intellectual property development at the major consulting firms is staggering, given that some of these firms employ hundreds of thousands of people. None of these firms could produce any research, because any research they did provide would be instantly gerrymandered by a senior partner to maximize some sales goal.

The Term “We”

The term we could be used even if Brightwork were one person. This is called the use of the “royal we,” as explained by Wikipedia.

“In the public situations in which it is used, the monarch or other dignitary is typically speaking not only in his or her personal capacity but also in an official capacity as leader of a nation or institution.”

I am a researcher while Ahmed is an advisor. But Brightwork Research & Analysis is a legal entity. “We” is essentially a shorthand to describe the entity of Brightwork Research & Analysis. I could write out the full name every time, but that would both be tedious, and would then bring accusations of grandstanding or writing overly promotional articles.

However, if the claim by Bärbel Winkler is that Brightwork Research & Analysis is small, that is true. And no claim of otherwise has ever been made. However, it seems to be using smallness as criticism. Again, see WiPro for the relationship between size and accuracy on SAP.

One of the most essential features of Brightwork Research & Analysis is entirely overlooked by Bärbel Winkler, which is that we take no money form any vendor. This is a feature not shared by all of the entities that are approved analysts for SAP. Curiously, nowhere does Bärbel Winkler note that media output is highly correlated with the financial connection to vendors. This all-important point does not interest Bärbel Winkler.

Is the Brightwork Article Opinion?

“Does it appear to be an opinion piece or a factual narrative?

Due to the rather emotive language it reads more like an opinion piece to me. Something the author seems to want to hide by calling his website “Brightworkresearch“.”

And back to the emotive ad hominem once again. With all of the information provided in the article and all of the links to supporting information, the article is an opinion piece?

Opinions are nothing more than conclusions, each based upon data points or discrete facts. One cannot magically eliminate contrary views by calling them opinions. When a doctor or lawyer provide their analysis of a patient or a case, what do we call that? That is right, a medical or legal opinion. But we do not seek to undermine their conclusions by calling them “just opinions.” The credibility of opinions come from the evidence presented and the domain expertise of the presenter. We have a great deal of HANA research. We have research that neither Bärbel Winkler or anyone Bärbel Winkler has included in her article can even understand (at least if we measure the responses to the article). If Bärbel Winkler in barely able to understand anything about HANA, how is she in a good position to say the research is not substantial?

Does the Brightwork Article Make Outrageous Claims?

“From the PTP-blog:
“If it’s an op-ed and you choose to share, you probably want to add a comment to that effect when sharing, as well as clarifying what you believe about the op-ed: do you agree with it, disagree with it, or agree with some parts, and disagree with others.”

Does it make any absolute or outrageous claims?

I’d put the conspiracy minded claims of how HANA got created and referring to it as “fake innovation” into the “outrageous claims” category.”

Our critique of HANA is that SAP faked innovation. Unlike Bärbel Winkler, we investigated the claims of HANA. We determined that Hasso added little to what existed already outside of this removal of aggregates and declaration that all tables should be column oriented (even to support transaction processing). Read the article How to Understand Fake Innovation in SAP HANA. Also, see the article on how SAP has backward engineered other databases for years. Did SAP Just Reinvent the Wheel with HANA? 

While admittedly not knowing anything about HANA, she categorized our claim around SAP innovation has outrageous. And how would Bärbel Winkler know one way or another?

Is the Brightwork Article Too Categorical?

“From the PTP-blog:
“Here, you’re looking for trigger words or phrases like “always”, “never”, “everyone”, “no one”, or “all the time.” These are red flags for claims that are likely to be, at least to some degree, wrong. Rarely is truth absolute enough to hold in every case or falsehood so absolute as to be false in every instance.

If your answer is yes, then it’s probably best to pass on sharing.”

Does the article please you?


From the PTP-blog:
“If so, it may be playing to your subconscious biases. Make extra efforts to check if it is true.”

Does it make you angry?

No. As mentioned at the beginning, it made me wonder how factual it actually is.”

That is curious because the original article called into question many of SAP’s products that were supposed to be the future of SAP. HANA, Leonardo, SAP Cloud. Layoffs were concentrated in areas that have failed to meet expectations. As an ABAPer, Bärbel Winkler was not angry? Was she concerned? Did she welcome the news with an open mind?

Is Brightwork Research Bringing an Uncomfortable Truth?

“From the PTP-blog:
“Try to determine why. It may simply be that your anger is being triggered by an “uncomfortable truth”.

In either case, any article that stirs strong emotions (positive or negative) needs checking – as the emotions themselves may lead you to share as a result of your own biases.

Note here that an article or site may be intentionally designed to incite anger, revulsion, or outrage. The aim isn’t clarity or edification but rather to get your goat, basically a form of trolling. If this appears to be the case then you can safely ignore it. It’s simply not worth your time.”

More questions to ask and answer (from the PTP-blog):

Does the text support the title?
Are there any actual facts cited within it?
Are they well-supported?
If so, how reliable are those sources and can you trace them back to original articles or studies?

Judging from Paul’s reaction, at least some of the claims made in the article can be easily falsified, making them not really “well-supported”:

“In addition, some of the “facts” can be checked against reality e.g. the claim that an in-memory HANA database runs just the same speed or slower than a traditional disk based one. There are many organisations out there that have moved to a HANA database and they have all seen improvements, albeit not the over-stated claims made by SAP marketing, but improvements nonetheless.”

First, what about the claims that they thought were supported? When we analyze an article, we review the entire article or at least the most salient points. Bärbel Winkler’s article stops at trying to fact check two of the article’s many contentions. Even if both were wrong, the article is based upon many contentions and supporting articles. Why does Bärbel Winkler not mention the points that both Bärbel Winkler and Paul and others think may be supported? If they are supported, then it is deeply problematic and unethical even to call the entire article fake news. Disagreeing with “some of the claims” is not going to cut the mustard. Bärbel Winkler could have said (A, B & C) are those we agree with, and (X, Y & Z) are ones that seem authentic. But instead, she looks to invalidate the entire article by barely addressing any of the points in the article.

Now let us get to the two areas that Paul disputes.

Brightwork Stated that HANA Underperforms Disk Based Databases?

We have multiple reports of ECC on HANA underperforming ECC on Oracle. And this is specifically for transaction processing, which is most of what ECC does. We covered this in the article HANA as a Mismatch for S/4HANA and ERP. Paul is restating what SAP says, but he is not adding case studies or reality to the analysis. Even if some customers benefited from analytics improvements, that would not invalidate our claim regarding transaction processing performance.

Secondly, we never stated that performance for analytics goes down. It goes up. We covered this in the article SAP HANA Overview: How SAP HANA Is Such a Fast Database (For Analytics). But the story is much more involved than just that. Remember, both Oracle and IBM reached equivalence with HANA in 2014 and SQL Server in 2016 when they added in-memory and columnar capabilities. Something not mentioned by Paul is that much of the improvement in performance seen in HANA has come from increases in hardware, as we covered in the article How Much of Performance is HANA?

Is Paul Accusing SAP’s Marketing of Making False Claims

Paul also seems to be critiquing SAP marketing. He seems to be saying that SAP marketing made false claims. So is Paul saying that SAP lied when they made these claims?

This is the second time in recent memory that a pro-SAP resource has claimed SAP marketing provides inaccurate information. The first is Hasso Plattner, which we covered in the article John Appleby, Beaten by Chris Eaton in Debate and Required Saving by Hasso Plattner. When called out for inaccuracies on HANA, Hasso states.

“please don’t think that marketing or false statements will have any impact over time. there is nothing more transparent than application using an in memory data base in the cloud. nothing can be hidden away.”

Why is Hasso correlating claims made by HANA by SAP marketing with false statements? False statements have an enormous impact over time. They lock decision makers into lies told to them by the vendor, and as such, lock them into and make them invest in the fabrication and protect the lie.

Why is this ok?

Furthermore, Hasso Plattner cannot hold himself apart from SAP marketing. Hasso was the primary message shaper for HANA, to begin with, and has ceaselessly repeated false claims around HANA.

Our conclusion from reviewing multiple data inputs is that HANA has no advantage over the competing databases in dual mode processing. And of the databases in question, HANA is far more expensive than any of the competing offerings and far higher in maintenance as well as even in 2019 it severely lags the competition instability and is continuously being patched. Furthermore, we have reports of HANA losing in performance to SQL Server! And this is on a far smaller hardware footprint. Do readers have any idea how large the price discrepancy is between HANA and SQL Server, and the hardware cost difference between HANA and SQL Server? It is enormous. HANA was supposed to usher in a new day of transformative data processing and entirely in memory applications. An entirely new way of developing applications with (according to Hasso Plattner) the amount of code being dropped in half. Why is HANA losing in performance to SQL Server? This would be like LeBron James losing a game of one on one to a midget.

One would have to say

“maybe LaBron has lost a step.”

If Lebron can’t beat a midget, the Lakers would have to begin asking themselves,

“Why are we paying LaBron all this money.”

This is how weak HANA’s value proposition is, and HANA comes with indirect access liabilities that none of the other competing applications does as we covered in the article The HANA Police.

Given HANA’s expense and truly scandalous promises. SAP owes many companies refunds for the discrepancy between the promises of HANA and reality.

Where are the Missing Benchmarks for HANA?

Secondly, if HANA’s superiority is so proven and such a settled issue, why has SAP refused to perform any benchmarks for the standard SD benchmarks on HANA as we covered in the article The Hidden Issue with the SD HANA Benchmark? Why does SAP disallow competitive parameters for analytics as we covered in The Four Hidden Issues with SAP’s BW-EML Benchmark?

What did John Appleby say as to why SAP had not performed a benchmark for HANA using SD?

“You know, you get no-nonsense from me Bill.

I’ve not run the benchmark but I believe it’s because:

1) SD doesn’t run well on HANA

2) SD doesn’t accurately represent how customers actually use systems in 2014

3) HANA does run well for how customers really use systems in 2014″

That is curious, so SD benchmarks have been suppressed for HANA because HANA does not perform transaction processing very well. That is, the results are embarrassing. Read the full analysis in the article How Accurate Was John Appleby on HANA Not Working Fast for OLTP?

Brightwork Stated that Code Pushdown Does Not Speed Performance?

Now we will go to Paul’s next statement.

“In regard to pushing code down to the database, once again, it is possible to verify this by doing an experiment where you write two versions of a query, one with code pushdown, and one without, and see which runs faster. Then it becomes a straight yes/no rather than a matter of guesswork and speculation.”

When did we say this is not true?

Again, the article by Bärbel Winkler is arguing against claims we did not make. Is this how to dispute “fake news” by contradicting things that were not said?

Let us review what we wrote. We wrote that the code pushdown is first not innovative, as Oracle has had this capability for many years How Accurate are SAP’s Arguments for Code Pushdown? SAP did not use the term stored procedure, instead opting for a new word it created called “code pushdown.” This is explained by Rolf Paulson.

“in fact, SAP did not use the term stored procedure”, you may add “or (complex/aggregate) view” because what can be easily done by database views SELECT… GROUP BY…” for decades in database views just couldn’t be used on the ABAP platform due to limitations of OpenSQL and classical ABAP views , therefore a lot of stupid aggregation had in ABAP code, nested loops, which are now “pushed down” into CDS views like it was possible on other platforms for years, just taking a database view as query-source”

This was explicitly done because it would make it sound like SAP was doing something new. SAP has been pushing the innovative narrative with HANA, while backward engineering other databases, as we covered in the article, Did SAP Just Reinvent the Wheel with HANA?

The problem with code pushdown is that it locks the buying into the database, which is one reason why it is difficult for companies to move away from the Oracle database, and is one reason that Oracle has promoted the use of stored procedures. Likewise, SAP is promoting placing code in the database in part to block out competing database vendors and to have a reason to restrict database portability so that they can push out other database vendors from the market.

In some very extreme situations, there may be a necessity to push code into the database, but the maintenance goes up, and portability also goes down. Therefore it should be done with full consideration of the implications.

Paul does not appear to have read what we said about HANA.

Bärbel Winkler lacks an understanding of the topic and does not know who to ask for input.

Sharing a Fake News Article?

Satisfied that the entire article has been falsified, Bärbel Winkler jumps to what she wants to do, which is brand the article ‘fake news’ and then spend time discussing the dangers of fake news.

“Why is it important to be able to judge the credibility of an article before sharing it?

This is where the Irish Times article Combating ‘fake news’: The 21st century civic duty which actually prompted me to write this blog post, comes in. As the authors of the article, Stephan Lewandowsky (link to an interview about fake news) and Joe Lynam, put it:

“But truth is under threat, thanks to the practitioners of disinformation and the four D’s of deception: distort, distract, dismay and dismiss.”

“This never-ending flow of distraction, distortion, dismissal and dismay creates the fifth and most consequential D: Doubt. Doubt in our newspapers, doubt in our governments, doubt in our experts and doubt in the truth itself.”

“The 21st century equivalent of clearing snow from the path of your elderly neighbour should be preventing your neighbour believing (and spreading or sharing) every outraged headline.”

“This new civic duty becomes more urgent every day. False information spreads faster on Twitter than the truth. But information does not spread by itself, it requires people to spread it. So before sharing anything on social media, do some fact-checking.””

Let us slow down Bärbel Winkler. Let look at the claims made in your article.

The Factual Challenges Contained in the Bärbel Winkler Article

Article ClaimReality
He has been predicting things for many years that keep not happening.Brightwork has the best record on predicting SAP. See our direct comparison to SAP's accuracy.
Brightwork predicted a specific date that SAP would open S/4HANA to AnyDB. No date for S/4HANA move to AnyDB was ever predicted.
Brightwork predicted SAP would ditch HANA.This is never a prediction we made.
Brightwork stated that HANA underperforms disk based databases.We never made such a statement. See article for full explanation.
Brightwork stated that code pushdown does not speed performance.Never made this claim. We never would as we know it does. Our critique is more nuanced.

The Ad Hominem (Personal Attacks) Contained in the Bärbel Winkler Article

Ad HominemReality
The Brightwork article was fake newsNeither Bärbel Winkler nor anyone interviewed or quoted are in a position to contradict our claims.
The article contains emotional language which means it is fake news.This is a highly subjective determination. Other writing from SAP that is far more emotive (such as from Bill McDermott) is never fact checked by SAP resources. By this standard, any article could be declared fake news in part by its tone, use of grammar, etc..
The Brightwork article deals in conspiracy theories.Nothing in the article even comes close to the definition of conspiracy theory. See the included definition of conspiracy theory.
Brightwork is similar to a end of days preacher.Who is more accurate on SAP? SAP or Brightwork? Did Run Simple happen? Is HANA 100,000x faster, etc...
Brightwork uses the term “we” in articles. True, but meaningless. And "we" is a standard English usage to describe an entity or overall work of an entity rather than one individual.
Brightwork is small.Also true, but also meaningless to knowledge or accuracy. See Infosys example.
Article is an opinion piece.The author would not know, but claim is made based upon supposed "emotive" language rather than reading the content.
Article made an outrageous claim.The claim that HANA is fake innovation is hardly outrageous. And we have the research to support the claim. The author made not attempt and is not equipped to falsify our claim.

This is an incompetent article on the part of Bärbel Winkler. Her claim about our article being fake news is warrantless. It is also incredibly lazy, proposing to have concluded without doing the most primary research to determine if her claim is true.

First, contradict what the article said, then the conversation about fake news can begin. Not before. It is quite apparent that Bärbel Winkler would like our material to be fake news, and working backward from this conclusion, Bärbel Winkler assembled a fragile combination of inaccurate factual challenges and ad hominems to try to prove the conclusion.

Advice on Enjoying the HANA Quiz

To see the full screen just select the lower right-hand corner and expand. Trust us, expanding makes the experience a whole lot more fun.



Bärbel Winkler has used a problematic term, fake news, to describe the article. The term fake news was first used (at least in recent times) by Trump to discredit fact checkers, without providing counter-evidence. It has been used by an MD to dispute criticism of his work, as explained by the following quotation.

Omalu declined several requests for an interview and refused to answer any questions for this story. In an email, he dismissed questions raised by experts as coming from “a minority of doctors who are seeking very cheap and bogus popularity . . . who work directly or indirectly with these sports organizations.”

“Your paper engaging in such bogus controversies will bolster some people’s allegations of ‘Fake News,’ ” Omalu wrote.

Labeling something fake news is not an argument, it is a personal attack, and there seems to be a strong correlation between those that use the term, and their lack of willingness to reply to criticism.

And this is the same approach employed by Bärbel Winkler in this article. SAP is similar to Trump in that both SAP and their adherents believe that SAP has the right to tell any lie and never be fact-checked on their lies.

It took minimal mental effort for Bärbel Winkler. She had some type of “feeling” about the article, obtained quotes from resources with a pro-SAP bias, and then included people without the domain expertise to contradict or even faithfully restate the claims of the article.

Secondly, Bärbel Winkler entirely left out her financial bias from the equation, pretending (as nearly all SAP resources do when they write) that she is some independent entity who does not rely upon SAP for her livelihood. Overall, the article is filled with logical errors and extremely fuzzy thinking.

Because the level of thought behind the article is so weak, it took me a long time to write this rebuttal because I am being forced to think both Bärbel Winkler and the people quoted in the article who don’t appear capable of doing much more than working off of the basis of hearsay. The incorrect claims in the Bärbel Winkler’s article that is which are counterclaims to claims I did not make means that a substantial section of people in the SAP space are not capable of understanding the content of Brightwork articles. And are having to work off of only the superficial elements of the article. Bärbel Winkler seems to spend about 50% of her mental energy, observing the emotional nature of the writing.

Since HANA was first introduced, there have been many more people repeating statements about HANA than ever understood the validity of the claims or ever put any time into understanding either HANA or even databases. Even SAP’s most prominent resources like John Appleby and Thomas Jung repeatedly make false claims about HANA, and even in 2019, the general knowledge of foundational database topics among SAP resources is incredibly weak. See this article where John Appleby is beaten in a debate by someone who is an expert in DB2, which we covered in the article John Appleby, Beaten by Chris Eaton in Debate and Required Saving by Hasso Plattner. John Appleby fakes not only his HANA expertise, but also his DB2 expertise, and is questioned on this topic by Chris Eaton.

SAP and SAP resources intend not to be fact-checked. And intend to call into question the fact-checkers, Brightwork, and UpperEdge being just about the only ones (email us another fact checkers of SAP, and we will add them to the list if we agree.) SAP is rarely fact-checked as the majority of those that provide information on SAP are connected to SAP financially. SAP and SAP resources do not want unpaid off entities providing analysis of SAP. Instead they would prefer that readers gobble down entirely SAP controlled information as we covered in the article Are SAP’s Layoffs Due to an Impressive Transformation?

The most important feature of the article, which is what the layoffs mean is entirely unaddressed by Bärbel Winkler. Furthermore, Bärbel Winkler proposes a type of censorship where SAP or Bärbel Winkler determine what links can be shared. The SAP space is already highly censored, but it seems that Bärbel Winkler thinks it needs to be kept this way. We have critiqued many sources on SAP, but we have never said that some sources should never be read at all. One has to wonder what Bärbel Winkler is so concerned about limiting other readers’ exposure to non-conformist SAP information.

Financial Disclosure

Financial Bias Disclosure

Neither this article nor any other article on the Brightwork website is paid for by a software vendor, including Oracle, SAP or their competitors. As part of our commitment to publishing independent, unbiased research; no paid media placements, commissions or incentives of any nature are allowed.

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TCO Book



Enterprise Software TCO: Calculating and Using Total Cost of Ownership for Decision Making

Getting to the Detail of TCO

One aspect of making a software purchasing decision is to compare the Total Cost of Ownership, or TCO, of the applications under consideration: what will the software cost you over its lifespan? But most companies don’t understand what dollar amounts to include in the TCO analysis or where to source these figures, or, if using TCO studies produced by consulting and IT analyst firms, how the TCO amounts were calculated and how to compare TCO across applications.

The Mechanics of TCO

Not only will this book help you appreciate the mechanics of TCO, but you will also gain insight as to the importance of TCO and understand how to strip away the biases and outside influences to make a real TCO comparison between applications.
By reading this book you will:
  • Understand why you need to look at TCO and not just ROI when making your purchasing decision.
  • Discover how an application, which at first glance may seem inexpensive when compared to its competition, could end up being more costly in the long run.
  • Gain an in-depth understanding of the cost, categories to include in an accurate and complete TCO analysis.
  • Learn why ERP systems are not a significant investment, based on their TCO.
  • Find out how to recognize and avoid superficial, incomplete or incorrect TCO analyses that could negatively impact your software purchase decision.
  • Appreciate the importance and cost-effectiveness of a TCO audit.
  • Learn how SCM Focus can provide you with unbiased and well-researched TCO analyses to assist you in your software selection.
  • Chapter 1:  Introduction
  • Chapter 2:  The Basics of TCO
  • Chapter 3:  The State of Enterprise TCO
  • Chapter 4:  ERP: The Multi-Billion Dollar TCO Analysis Failure
  • Chapter 5:  The TCO Method Used by Software Decisions
  • Chapter 6:  Using TCO for Better Decision Making

Appleby’s False HANA Statements and the Mindtree Acquisition

Executive Summary

  • For years John Appleby provided information about HANA to the market.
  • There was a specific timing to when Appleby released false information around HANA.


We covered in The Appleby Accuracy Checker: A Study into John Appleby’s Accuracy on HANA the extremely low accuracy of information provided by John Appleby over a period from roughly 2012 up to the present day. However, the false information supplied had a high intensity from 2013 to 2015, and then declined after 2015. Something particular happened in 2015, which may have been strongly motivational for Appleby to release false information.

Appleby’s Role as Shill for SAP for HANA

John Appleby was “The Global Head of HANA” for the consulting firm Bluefin Solutions. And he was the primary shill for HANA, particularly from the period of 2013 to 2015. John Appleby routinely published false information around HANA is what appears to be a classic shill relationship with SAP.

SAP’s support for what Appleby was doing was evidenced even in the comments made by Hasso Plattner. Appleby is repeatedly bailed out by Hasso Plattner at specific instances when Appleby is losing debates against commenters, as we covered in the article John Appleby, Beaten by Chris Eaton in Debate and Required Saving by Hasso Plattner.

How Appleby’s Prominence Helped Build the Bluefin Solutions Brand

Before John Appleby building a prominent role in media with his HANA posts, most people that worked in SAP would have been unaware of Bluefin Solutions as a company. There is little doubt that Bluefin Solutions’ prominent (but now obviously misleading) role in promoting HANA was what would have made Bluefin Solutions particularly attractive to being acquired.

This was referenced in the acquisition press release.

The Acquisition of Bluefin Solutions Mindtree

On July 16, 2015, Mindtree announced it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire Bluefin Solutions.

“Headquartered in the UK, Bluefin delivers solutions to some of the world´s most prestigious companies and has earned multiple awards including the SAP Pinnacle Award, SAP HANA Partner of the Year, SAP CRM Partner of the Year and SAP BI Partner of the Year. Bluefin offers one of the industry’s most highly regarded team of experts for transitioning to SAP HANA, digital and real-time-analytics.”

Well, this is exaggerated as most press releases are. But notice the focus on how Bluefin were experts in transitioning to SAP HANA.

Appleby’s Double Financial Incentive to Lie

Appleby would have already had a strong motivation to exaggerate HANA. Nearly all of the SAP consulting companies did, but Appleby’s articles put him in a special category of being the most prominent proponent of HANA. However, with the Mindtree acquisition on the horizon, where he, as a senior member, was very likely to receive a substantial payoff, would have had an even higher incentive to lie. Of the articles that we chose to evaluate for our The Appleby Accuracy Checker: A Study into John Appleby’s Accuracy on HANA, notice the dates on each article.

DateArticle Subject
November, 13 2013What in Memory Database for BW
December 27 2013A Historical View of HANA
March 6, 2014TCO of HANA
April 17, 2014On HANA Replacing BW
June 2, 2014On HANA SPS08
July 21, 2014On HANA Versus DB2
September 9, 2014HANA FAQ
November 18, 2014HANA Performance with OLTP
December 15, 20142014 HANA Predictions
March 19, 2015The BW-EML Benchmark
April 18, 2015What Oracle Won't Tell You About HANA
June 25, 201810 Customer Use Cases

This is not an exhaustive list of Appleby’s articles, but these were some of the most notable.

Furthermore, Appleby’s production of articles dipped sharply after 2015. However, we did not draw a correlation to the Mindtree acquisition until after we completed the Appleby Accuracy Checker, and check the date of the Mindtree acquisition.

It now appears that Appleby was making a particular effort to exaggerate HANA before the Mindtree acquisition, with his prominent articles tailing off after mid-2015. Being an insider, he would have knew about the negotiations with Mindtree (and perhaps other potential buyers) many months before the acquisition was announced. By exaggerating HANA and Bluefin Solutions’ involvement in HANA projects, Appleby would have considerably increased the price of the buyout and thus his compensation. In financial manipulation, pushing up the cost of an asset that you know will decline after you sell it is called “pump and dump.” And it looks like this is what Appleby did with Bluefin Solutions.

Appleby’s Departure from Bluefin Solutions

Appleby convinced the world how great Bluefin Solutions’ HANA practice was, that he led. Yet after the acquisition, Appleby leaves Bluefin Solutions along with other founders. Why? To us, it seems quite likely that post-acquisition, Mindtree found out the truth about Bluefin Solutions’ HANA practice. And recall that Bluefin Solutions was also being sold on “explosive” growth in HANA. So Mindtree was buying the future. This was a future that never materialized.

The overstatement of the HANA practice, along with the lack of growth meeting the pre-acquisition expectations, would have created friction with his owners. While it is not that unusual for founders to leave a consulting firm, if Appleby was a major asset to Bluefin Solutions, and part of the reason for its acquisition, it seems odd that Mindtree did not incentivize him to stay.

Bluefin Solutions 4 Years Post Acquisition

Bluefin Solutions has seen its prominence decline in the SAP market since the acquisition. Four years ago, HANA had great growth plans, but in 2015, SAP stopped reporting customer numbers as we covered in the article Why Did SAP Stop Reporting HANA Numbers After 2015?

The reason for this was simple.

SAP was able to falsely publish its numbers of customers in the 2012 to 2015 timeframe, with various consulting companies being counted as customers. However, after the ecosystem had been counted as customers, it was no longer possible to show a growth story, because HANA never took off. If SAP had continued to publish customer number for HANA per quarter as they had been, it would have been apparent that HANA’s growth had leveled off. It would have undermined the previous statements that HANA’s growth was “explosive,” (Ron Enslin) or that HANA was “the fastest growing product in SAP’s history.” (McDermott, Appleby) After this point, SAP switched to publishing S/4HANA numbers.

Mindtree could have been forgiven for thinking it was purchasing an up and coming consulting firm, one with a special relationship between its “Global Head of HANA” and Hasso Plattner. But what Mindtree did not know, and could not have known as they were not a firm with SAP knowledge (Mindtree was purchasing Bluefin Solutions to gain entry into the SAP market). It is that most of the information John Appleby and Bluefin Solutions were releasing to the market was false. This would eventually have blowback, and if Bluefin Solutions were selling privately to customers on the same basis as the claims Appleby was making in print, it is an absolute certainty that Bluefin S0lutions ended up with many disappointed customers.

Even though Bluefin Solutions is listed has had somewhere between 200 employees, its website traffic has dropped to less than 10,000 page views in March of 2019, and they are an SAP consulting company on the decline.

Who is to Blame?

Those within Bluefin Solutions that we have spoken with primarily blame the “incompetent Indian management” of Mindtree for their decline, and the fact that the Mindtree management does not understand the SAP market.

However, the decline of HANA, which was the main item that differentiated Bluefin Solutions has also hurt. Not only did the HANA market level out, but the second implementation market that Bluefin Solutions had intended to leverage their HANA media prominence to enter, S/4HANA, never materialized.

“Our S/4HANA team has certified SAP HANA specialists across 33 countries including SAP Mentors and HANA Distinguished Engineers. We are SAP’s preferred implementation partner in the S/4HANA space and are fast becoming the leading S/4HANA subject matter expert and S/4HANA delivery partner in the market.”

The quotations on Bluefin Solutions’ website, even in 2019, are odd. Bluefin is a company of roughly 200 people; however, they claim HANA specialists in 33 countries. If there were an average of 3 HANA specialists per country, this would amount to 99 HANA specialists in total.

Even though there are extremely few companies live on S/4HANA, Bluefin Solutions is also the “the leading S/4HANA subject matter expert.” Consulting firms are not entirely composed of consultants. They have salespeople, administrative staff, etc.. Bluefin Solutions’ statements would mean that they would rapidly run out of consultants.

Here are the solutions where Bluefin Solutions claims expertise.

  • BI/BW
  • Enterprise Performance Management
  • S/4HANA
  • Travel and Expense Management
  • Leonardo
  • C/4HANA
  • Fiori and SAPUI5
  • SAP Cloud Platform
  • SAP Managed Services

Bluefin Solutions continues to distribute false information about HANA with or without Appleby. Notice that this service offering page describes a solution that is still being developed, which is made up of acquisitions. But as we covered in the article How Accurate Was Bluefin Solutions on C4HANA?

C/4HANA is still being developed and made up of the following solutions.

“In a press release today SAP stated: “Following the completed acquisitions of market leaders Hybris, Gigya and CallidusCloud, SAP now ties together solutions to support all front-office functions, such as consumer data protection, marketing, commerce, sales and customer service.””

Yet Bluefin Solutions wrote an article about C/4 as a functioning product right after it was acquired. Does Bluefin Solutions have resources in Hybris, CallidusCloud, and Gigya? Again, how are all these various areas of expertise fitting into the number of consultants that Bluefin Solutions has?

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It looks incredibly likely that Appleby was particularly motivated to exaggerate HANA’s capabilities and Bluefin Solutions’ HANA practice due to an impending acquisition by some company (the winner being Mindtree).

Now here is where the ethical determination comes in.

Mindtree is just another in the bottom-feeding and unethical Indian consulting companies. Therefore was it wrong for John Appleby to exaggerate HANA to get a better price for Bluefin Solutions? 

When I found out that the acquiring company was MindTree, I chuckled. Is it wrong to lie if you are stealing from an Indian consulting company? Mindtree, just like Infosys, Wipro, TATA, and the rest, is scamming the H1-B program and offer the most atrocious consulting performance. In my view, Indian consulting companies should be stripped of their business license. The best thing for both US domestic employees and US companies is if all the Indian consulting companies went out of business – along with many of the local consulting companies. Therefore, on balance, I have to applaud what Appleby did – to the degree that we were able to shive Mindtree.

As for the second factor, there are repeated cases where Appleby lists customers doing things with HANA that don’t make any match up with our research into HANA. These cases seem to demonstrate Bluefin Solutions standing up massive HANA instances, almost as if they have no limit to their budgets. Brightwork Research & Analysis has performed more research on HANA than any other entity, and we find it highly unlikely that Appleby and Bluefin Solutions were doing what they claimed with HANA.

Financial Disclosure

Financial Bias Disclosure

Neither this article nor any other article on the Brightwork website is paid for by a software vendor, including Oracle, SAP or their competitors. As part of our commitment to publishing independent, unbiased research; no paid media placements, commissions or incentives of any nature are allowed.

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How Accurate Was SAP on ERP SD Is No Longer a Transaction Processing Module?

Executive Summary

  • SAP proposed that the SD benchmark is no longer applicable because the way that customers used SD has changed.
  • We review the accuracy of this claim.


SAP’s stance on SD benchmarks is curious. In this article, we will review the history and accuracy of SAP’s claim regarding benchmark applicability.

The Position of SAP on its SD Benchmarks

“Hey guys keep your calm. let’s look at the benchmark issue first.

the current sd application of the sap erp suites reads tables without projection (didn’t matter in the past), maintains multiple indices (some via db, some as redundant tables), maintains materialized aggregates to achieve a decent response time for oltp reporting and still has some joining of tables trough loops in abap. all this is bad for a columnar in memory db. the current select ‘single’ is 1,4 times slower for a normal projection

(equal for a projection with one attribute, significantly slower for a projection of all attributes of a table with hundreds of attributes. the oltp applications have a large amount of supposedly high speed queries and transactional reporting. some of this had to be moved in the past to the bw for performance reasons. also planning activities should be part of the transactional scope, just think about the daily delivery planning.” – Hasso Plattner

Hasso’s English is a bit rough, and while he is endorsing a particular statement here, the quotation from John Appleby is more understandable. (Appleby did not work for SAP, at the time this article was published, but he faithfully represented SAP’s position as Appleby lead a HANA consulting group at Bluefin and was a shill for SAP.)

“I’ve not run the benchmark but I believe it’s because:

1) SD doesn’t run well on HANA

2) SD doesn’t accurately represent how customers actually use systems in 2014

3) HANA does run well for how customers really use systems in 2014

SAP are in the process of creating a new benchmark which I understand will include mixed-workload OLTAP queries.

The BW-EML benchmark was designed to take into account the changing direction of data warehouses – a move towards more real-time data, and ad-hoc reporting capabilities.”– John Appleby

This quote is analyzed in more detail in the article How Accurate Was John Appleby on SAP BW-EML Benchmark?

The Very Serious Logical Problems with SAP’s Logic

Even though the vast majority of ERP instances are not on HANA (SAP claims 2000 live customers on S/4HANA, which, even if true, would still be a tiny percentage of the total ECC live customers), the SD benchmarks are no longer representative of how companies use SD. This statement was made as far back as Nov 2013 by Hasso Plattner, as we covered in the article John Appleby, Beaten by Chris Eaton in Debate and Required Saving by Hasso Plattner.

However, when we check the SD benchmarks, there is not a single HANA benchmark for SD, and we are now up to 2019.

Also, according to SAP, the appropriate benchmark for SD is the BW-EML/BWAML, which is an analytics benchmark. So, somewhere around when HANA was introduced, SD switched from being primarily a transaction processing module to being an analytics module? That is curious how a module can change its basic processing type retroactively. It’s almost like this entire proposal was made up out of thin air.

This is true even if SD on ECC has no analytics other than opening tables in SE16(n)?

Talk about a story that does not hold together.

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SAP’s contention around the inapplicability of the SD benchmarks is false. It was done very obviously to create an excuse to keep HANA from competing with other databases and to hide the fact that HANA does not perform well for transaction processing, as we covered in the article HANA as a Mismatch for S/4HANA and ERP.

Financial Disclosure

Financial Bias Disclosure

Neither this article nor any other article on the Brightwork website is paid for by a software vendor, including Oracle, SAP or their competitors. As part of our commitment to publishing independent, unbiased research; no paid media placements, commissions or incentives of any nature are allowed.

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SAP HANA 大裁员:它怎么了

Executive Summary

  • SAP recently had major layoffs in its HANA group.
  • We analyze what this likely means for HANA.

Chinese Version of This Article

This article was originally written in English and became very popular in China. It was translated at a website in China and before we had a chance to complain about the unauthorized copy, it was then removed for some reason. We copied a saved version of that article that we had to the site.


2019年3月6日星期三,SAP对其高级HANA职位做出了重大调整。SAP解雇了所有顶级HANA开发人员,并且解雇了HANA实验室的主管。加上最近解雇的SAP首席技术官Bernd Leukert。在本文中,我们将回顾这些变化的重要影响以及HANA的进展。


HANA是一个构思欠佳的数据库,其基本设计参数由一个完全没有资格设计数据库的人设定,Hasso Plattner。正如我们在文章中所述,Hasso Plattner和他所带领的博士生发明HANA?SAP为HANA的开发创建了一个有预谋的错误背景故事,Hasso在他博学的博士的帮助下发明了一个新的数据库。

Hasso has written this story in several books.


HANA以巨大的技术债务开始其生命,因为它的基本设计从未有任何意义。Hasso最终选择了另一位非常不合格的人来管理HANA的发展 – Vishal Sikka。 Vishal Sikka几年前离开SAP去了Infosys,但SAP在新任CTO Bernd Leukert的领导下,在HANA方面取得的进展很小,他没有资格成为CTO,甚至不如Vishal Sikka领导下HANA取得的进展。


HANA领导行业的唯一领域是Marketing Claims。在Brightwork,我们对主要数据库供应商以外的任何实体的HANA进行了大量研究,由于他们与SAP的合作协议,他们都无法发布他们所拥有的信息。我没有和SAP之外的任何一个不懂数据库的人谈过SAP的Claims。



技术公司夸大其技术创新是很常见的。正如我们在“公共云革命:开源如何取代私有IT巨型供应商”一书中所述,私营部门公司参与的一项主要策略是从公共领域撤出,并假装创新是他们的。从制药公司到软件公司的每个人都经常这样做。 SAP是一位声称因未参与的创新而获得赞誉的大师。

HANA是伪创新,正如我们在《如何理解HANA伪创新》一文中所述。 SAP已经对其他数据库进行逆向工程,并重命名项目以隐藏逆向工程设计,SAP为HANA花费的资金只是为了简单的重复造轮子?SAP已经无法为数据库创建新的贡献。它的设计与数据库设计的完全相反,正如我们在如何理解AWS的多基础与SAP的单基础方法中所述。这一切都不应该那么难理解,因为SAP关于HANA的陈述经常违反数据库理论。

今天,SAP关于HANA的许多声明都可以穿插Dan Quayle或Sara Palin的引用,而且看起来并不一致。Steve Lucas提供的一些最荒谬的内容,正如我们对Steve Lucas 文章的分析关于HANA Oracle不会告知你的事情。




HANA总是构思不佳,在市场上没有任何实际用途。我们对全球12个HANA实施报告的评估表明,它必须是市场上销售的最高维护数据库。我们跟踪的其他数据库都不是那么不稳定,需要很多其他组件才能正常运行 – HANA与各种创可贴相结合,这些辅助工具是将HANA推出市场所必需的,也是高度分散的开发领导力的自然结果。 HANA是数据库的黑洞,不断吞噬IT预算。我们跟踪的唯一适度成功的实现是针对HANA上的BW,但HANA仅在旧硬件上优于旧版本的Oracle和DB2。事实上,正如我们在文章中讨论的SAP HANA利益的多少硬件负责人所做的那样,大部分性能改进都不适用于更新和更大的硬件?




HANA的真正目的很简单。这是为了将促使Oracle退出他们的客户并为SAP获取更多的收入(SAP已经为Oracle的客户增加了收费)。Hasso和Larry已经陷入了长达数十年的根深蒂固的敌意,HANA是Hasso刺向Larry的一种方式……当Hasso的帆船在他们的一场比赛中遇到机械问题时,Larry可能不会停下来协助他。 老实说,Hasso受到自负和情绪的驱使,这可能是Hasso在头脑里第一次种下要开始做HANA的种子。这个假设最初是通过与Oracle / SAP领域多年经验的联系人向我提出的,但不希望被识别出来。





我们的观点是原罪是让Hasso设定了设计参数。正如我们一再声明的那样,Hasso不是一个技术性的头脑,他是我们在Hasso Plattner博士学位所涵盖的推动者吗? SAP的另外三位联合创始人更多的是技术人才。由于他是最后一位创始人,他基本上因为他们的贡献而受到赞扬。


解雇 / 裁员







多年来,HANA一直受到保护,因为每个人都担心与Hasso相矛盾,但随着Hasso年龄不断增长,HANA继续暴露,HANA的日子已成为SAP的核心重点。如果SAP认为过去的成功是基于差异化的技术实力,那就严重错误了。 SAP的主要区别在于它能够建立合作伙伴关系,并建立能够推荐SAP处于财务优势地位的大型和强大公司。从本质上讲,它是一个促进腐败的高功能机器。但SAP越来越认为它的成功是建立在技术差异的基础之上的 – 而且它正在给它们带来麻烦。










这是由彼得·戈德马赫(Peter Goldmacher)提出的,他解决了SAP多年前提出的会计技巧。他因为不知道自己在做什么而受到SAP的严厉批评,然后SAP在这个问题上变得黑暗。


我们认为最近的解雇是SAP认识到其与HANA的发展战略/方法不起作用。而且早就应该来了。但问题是很难看出HANA是如何恢复。它总是有不可能的设计参数,从那时起就一直在努力满足这些设计参数。问题是,它无法满足它们,这可能是所有抨击的主要原因。即使拥有比SAP更多数据库经验和人才的甲骨文也没有以满足SAP声称的方式推出多模式数据库。如果Oracle无法做到这一点,很难看到SAP或其他任何人这样做。我们的观点与Bloor Research的结论相同,正如我们的文章中关于Oracle内存中的Bloor研究的准确性,这与AWS的相同,即数据库应该专门用于处理任务。

如果我为某人设定了一项不可能完成的任务,那么他们就无法达到它。他们效率低下。这是因为不可能的目标会产生功能障碍,它会吸引像维萨尔•西卡(Vishal Sikka)或贝恩德•勒克特(Bernd Leukert)这样的人,他们会通过告诉Hasso和其他人他们正在取得进展而保持高调的立场。只有可实现的目标才是动机。 Hasso设定了设计参数,但后来却不知道如何满足它们。然后他把目标交给了另外两个也不知道如何遇见他们的人,但他们说过了。

我们一直在等待SAP将兔子从他们的帽子中变出来,已经八年了,没有任何兔子出现。多年来我们一直在讨论SAP资源,正如我们在如何避免您错过HANA这一文章中所述。很明显,那些人要么不知道他们在谈论什么,要么在撒谎。另一方面,SAP的许多人认为如果他们只是重复SAP的谈话要点,他们就会做好自己的工作。作为HANA周围虚假信息的最大传播者之一,John Appleby,我们曾在多篇文章中讽刺过,其中包括John Appleby如何错误地了解他的HANA预测,似乎已经从出版界消失了。

所有这些人现在看起来都很傻。最后,关于SAP是否具有在其他数据库供应商中并不是很优越的数据库知识,本书尚未公布。 SAP没有。







首先,我们先指出了事实。 SAP客户唯一要做的就是避免与HANA混在一起,而是阅读我们的研究而不是听Deloitte或埃森哲,他们生活中唯一的目标是最大化他们的计费时间。而且所有意图和目的都可以被高端鹦鹉所取代,正如我们在SAP咨询公司和鹦鹉之间的区别是什么?





Where Did All of the Pro HANA Resources Disappear To?

Executive Summary

  • For years HANA resources talked a brave game.
  • However, in the March 2019 layoffs, HANA resources have become quiet as a mouse.


We discussed the topic of the disappearing HANA resources with Eduardo Muniz at the Advantage Group.

Eduardo’s Observation

Shaun Snapp. Interesting that all SAP Conversationalists that challenge articles like yours and profited from being behind SAP are completely mute. No comments….

Our Response

Good point. I am expecting a few however because this article is driving a lot of traffic. Most likely the comment will be very much filled with gratuitous personal attacks. The last argument used was that no one should comment at this time because it is inhumane. SAP resources have particular rules about when SAP can be fact-checked. Its like one day every four weeks is when fact checking is allowed, between the hours of 3 AM and 5 AM. But outside of that designated time, it is considered inappropriate and unprofessional. So it is important to keep away from the evidence and to focus on me and Brightwork. I am waiting for some SAP resource to blame Brightwork for the issues with HANA. There was literally an army of pro-HANA advocates that are becoming increasingly silent.


Resources like John Appleby of Bluefin Solutions who spread so much false information about HANA are now nowhere to be found, and he won’t account for How John Appleby Was So Wrong About His HANA Predictions.

They are now nowhere to be seen in the media landscape for HANA and won’t account for the previous fallacious information they published.

After all, the brave talk about how HANA would change the world, after repeating everything that SAP and Hasso Plattner said, and where we speculated what is the Difference Between an SAP Consulting Company and a Parrot on HANA?, HANA resources have become increasingly silent.

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