SAP Commerce Cloud: Guide to Seamless Upgrade & Migration

Post Category :

Navigating the intricacies of combined upgrade and migration projects, often coined as the “single go-live approach,” proves challenging, particularly in addressing dependencies between these parallel streams.

Let’s explore the realm of possibilities as we affirm that delivering both upgrade and migration in one go is not just a conjecture: it’s a viable reality. Gain insights into fostering collaboration between upgrade and migration streams while optimizing task parallelization without sacrificing the hallmark of any successful project – quality.

Navigating Data Migration & Upgrade

The interplay between data migration and the upgrade phase is pivotal in project execution. Typically, data and media migration follow the completion of the upgrade phase while code adaptation is underway. 

Explore strategic approaches to optimize your project plan by initiating data migration preparations while upgrade activities are in progress. By proactively planning and executing key steps in advance, you can alleviate concerns about the project’s critical path, ensuring a smoother and more efficient overall execution.

Optimizing Project Efficiency with Production-First Approach

The Production-First approach in environment provisioning challenges the conventional sequence by executing the first migration and subsequent testing activities directly in the production environment. This involves replicating the database schema from source to target, migrating data, and leveraging SAP Commerce’s Platform Update functionality for mandatory type-system changes during regular deployment.

While this approach may seem initially complex, it offers notable advantages. It streamlines business disruption by consolidating downtime windows for both upgrade and migration, reduces the effort needed for On-premises and SAP Commerce Cloud go-live, eliminates the necessity for two UAT cycles, and simplifies any potential rollback, avoiding changes on-premises. Fulfilling this requirement hinges on provisioning the p1 environment once SAP Commerce Cloud subscription access is granted to the customer.

Seamless Production-First Approach with Source System Preparation

Realizing the full potential of the production-first approach demands proactive source system preparation by the customer. A critical responsibility lies in the hands of the customer to ensure data and media cleanup, ideally initiated during the upgrade phase. 

To facilitate a smooth process, customers should be informed early on about their responsibilities, providing ample time for data preparation before the inaugural migration run. Key topics to be addressed during project kick-off or dedicated data migration workshops include data cleanup strategies, possibilities for data anonymization, provisioning a production-like On-premise environment concerning data size, measuring data size with insights into expected growth rates, defining the scope of “complex” data (such as audit data or custom LOBs), enabling direct environment access for media migration, and conducting media size and consistency checks with potential cleanup or reduction. 

Concluding these discussions with a detailed action plan and associated due dates ensures effective tracking during regular project status meetings, setting the stage for a successful production-first approach.

Infrastructure Setup Essentials for Seamless Data Migration

Ensuring a successful data migration journey involves meticulous attention to infrastructure setup. The following aspects should be integral to the agenda of any data migration workshop: 

VPN and NAT Setup

Depending on customer requirements, a secure tunnel connection may be necessary to establish connectivity to the source database. Networking adaptations, mandatory for both SAP Commerce Cloud and On-premises systems, must be configured. The completion of this setup allows for direct validation of connectivity from DB Sync. 

Repository Access Configuration

Essential repository access details must be provided by the customer. If the repository is not publicly hosted, the previously configured NAT should include an entry point for repository connection. It’s crucial to align the repository structure with SAP’s official recommendations for a seamless process.

Lift & Shift Activities

Tasks such as environment configuration (endpoints, redirects, DNS, SSL setup, etc.) can be conducted in parallel with upgrade and code adaptation activities. While the configuration can be adapted early in the project, it is not mandatory for the execution of data migration. 

Minimal Upgrade Scope Deliverables (deployable MVP)

Before initiating technical data migration activities, certain prerequisites must be met by the upgrade stream. These include configuring the application with the target version, allowing complex customizations to remain disabled or mocked, deploying the application in SAP Commerce Cloud, and ensuring that only the HAC extension, along with SAP Commerce DB Sync, is required to be fully operational. Optional adaptations to the mandatory type of system can also be considered to minimize risks associated with type system differences, especially if the source database is not MSSQL.

The Imperative of Early-Stage Migration

Initiating the first migration at an early stage of the project holds paramount importance for several compelling reasons: 

Process Fine-Tuning

Conducting the migration at the earliest opportunity allows for a meticulous fine-tuning of the entire process. This proactive approach enables the project team to identify potential challenges, optimize procedures, and ensure a smoother execution during the cut-over window.

Outcome and Findings

  1. The results of the first migration provide invaluable insights and findings, including: 
  • Identification of technical blockers such as constraint violations, data inconsistency, and database engine-specific issues when comparing the source and target. 
  • Measurement of the expected duration per table, offering a realistic understanding of the time required for each data migration task. 
  • Identification of potential performance bottlenecks, necessitating considerations for scaling in both the target database (e.g., DTU on Azure SQL Database) and horizontal scaling for Background Processing aspects. Additionally, considerations for scaling or tuning the source database are explored. 

Enhance Project Planning & Streamline Execution

Consider Parallelization Options

  1. Evaluate parallelization possibilities based on factors such as project team size, duration, and budget. While certain tasks require sequential execution, others can be effectively parallelized to optimize the overall project timeline. 
  • Sequential Tasks: Certain tasks necessitate a step-by-step approach, where adding more developers or parallelization may not yield time optimization. These include tasks like adjusting code to build on the target version, adapting code customizations, ensuring the application starts on the target version, and adjusting the type of system for the target version. 
  • Tasks Executable in Parallel: Explore parallelization for tasks that can run simultaneously. In cases where the project size allows, consider adding more developers to expedite project completion.

Parallel Streams for Complex Projects

In complex projects involving functional upgrades, consider the implementation of separate streams working concurrently with technical upgrade and migration streams. This approach enhances efficiency and ensures a synchronized progression. 

Code Changes & Functional Upgrade Activities

  1. Leverage parallelization for various code changes and functional upgrade activities. Consider the following tasks: 
  • Adapt vendor-specific database queries and data types. 
  • Configure backend to Azure Blob Storage (Hot Folders) & Cloud Hot Folders. 
  • Modify file-based integrations and access to the local file system. 
  • Implement region cache adaptation. 
  • Upgrade Data Hub (if applicable). 
  • Integrate the customer’s SMTP solution. 
  • Implement image resizing code solutions. 
  • Execute SOLR configuration and schema upgrades. 
  • Undertake functional upgrade activities such as transitioning from Commerce Search to Adaptive Search, updating Cockpits to Backoffice, implementing Smart Edit, and migrating Legacy Promotions to the New Promotion Engin

Conclusion

Mastering the intricacies of SAP Commerce Cloud combined upgrade and migration projects, known as the “single go-live approach,” demands strategic planning and meticulous execution. We navigated through complexities, offering insights into fostering collaboration, optimizing task parallelization, and maintaining project quality. The journey covers strategic starting points, innovative Production-First approaches, proactive source system preparation, and infrastructure setup essentials. Emphasis is placed on early-stage migration, fine-tuning for optimal execution, and deriving invaluable outcomes for project success. 

In the landscape of SAP Commerce Cloud endeavours, VE3 stands as a valuable ally. With our expertise, commitment and SAP partnership, we provide support and solutions, helping businesses navigate challenges and seize opportunities in combined upgrade and migration projects. Success lies in leveraging intricacies to enhance capabilities and streamline operations for a future of efficiency and innovation. To know more, explore our innovative digital solutions or contact us directly.

EVER EVOLVING | GAME CHANGING | DRIVING GROWTH

VE3