SAP is an ERP package, which caters to the key function of integration. It provides integrated functionality for finance, sales, materials management, production and human resources.
SAP is DBMS transactional software written in ABAP/4. Various modules provide various functionalities. It can be configured to meet the business process logic through customisation. SAP is customisable software. The database in SAP can be either Oracle or Informix.
Technical Architecture (refer diagram a)
The technical architecture of SAP R/3 is as per the diagram. The Technical Architecture of SAP R/3 is a three-tier architecture. This means that the architecture can be broken down into three layers. First is the Data base Layer. The Database layer hosts the central database.
The central database is a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS). The next layer is the application layer. The business logic processing occurs in the application layer. The presentation layer is the Graphic user interface or the GUI, which interacts with the user and receives inputs and gives output to the user.
SAP recommends four concurrent Servers:
To have better control over the production system, SAP recommends four different servers in a typical SAP implementation. These are:
Development: All development work is carried out in the development server. Unit testing is done in the development server.
Integration: The changes are then tested for their correctness by integration testing in the integration server
Consolidation: The consolidation system consolidates all the changes before they are transported to the production environment.
Production: The production system is the live system which contains all the current data.
Technical Information – SAP
- SAP is a 32 Bit Client Server Application.
- SAP uses 4GL (4th Generation Language) called ABAP/4 for Front end Development
- ABAP/4- Advanced Business Application Programming Language
- Uses ALE (Application Link Enabling)
- Loose Coupling of Database
- Independent Servers
- SAP uses Messaging Mechanism to Synchronize database
IDES – Integrated Documentation and Educational System. IDES contains example data for all transactions.
OSS – Online Support System. This is an Online Support System provided by SAP.
Modules in SAP
SAP is divided into various modules that cater to different functionalities.
The various modules of SAP are as follows:
- Sales and Distribution
- Project Management
- Materials Management
- Quality Management
- Finance and Controlling
- Human Resources
- Production Planning
- Plant Maintenance