In this article, we will cover the collective considerations for deploying SAP infrastructure on Azure.
Possible system types for deploying SAP NetWeaver based applications within public cloud environments could be of the below scenarios:
As a first step, customers need to verify the following items:
As a second step, Azure resources and bandwidth limitations need to be compared to the original resource consumption of on-premises systems. Therefore, the customers need to be familiar with the various capabilities of the Azure types supported with SAP in the area of:
For infrastructure security, data is safeguarded in transit and at rest. To encrypt Windows and Linux IaaS virtual machine disks, you can use Azure Disk Encryption. Azure Disk Encryption uses the BitLocker feature of Windows and the DM-Crypt function of Linux to provide volume level encryption for the operating system and also the data disks. The solution also works with “Azure Key Vault” to help you constrain and manage the disk-encryption keys and secrets in your Key Vault subscription service. Data on the virtual machine disks are encrypted at rest in your Azure storage.
*) nn = SAP Instance Number
**) sid = SAP-System-ID
SAP has advocated single-stack application servers for years, so very few applications run on a dual-stack deployment model nowadays. The Azure load balancer implements the high availability cluster for the SAP Web Dispatcher. Load balancing of traffic to the application servers is handled within SAP. For traffic from SAP GUI clients connecting to a SAP server via DIAG and Remote Function Calls (RFC), the SCS message server balances the load by creating SAP App Server Logon Groups.
SMLG is an SAP ABAP transaction used to manage the logon load balancing capability of SAP Central Services.
The backend pool of the logon group has more than one ABAP application server. Clients accessing ASCS cluster services connect to the Azure load balancer through a front-end IP address.
The ASCS cluster virtual network name also has an IP address. This address can be associated with an additional IP address on the Azure load balancer so that the cluster can be managed remotely. SAP Web Dispatcher handles load balancing of HTTP(S) traffic to dual-stack servers (ABAP and Java).
Assign one administration NIC to a management subnet, and assign a data communication NIC to a separate subnet. For configuration details, see Create and manage a Windows virtual machine that has multiple NICs.
SAP landscape management functions require segregation of server traffic on different NICs. For example, business data should be separated from administrative traffic and backup traffic. Assigning multiple NICs to different subnets enables this data segregation. For more information, see “Network” in Building High Availability for SAP NetWeaver and SAP HANA.
With all database server VMs, we recommend using Azure Premium Storage for consistent read/write latency. For SAP application servers, including the (A)SCS virtual machines, you can use Azure Standard Storage, because application execution takes place in memory and uses disks for logging only.
For best reliability, we recommend using Azure Managed Disks. Managed disks ensure that the disks for VMs within an availability set are isolated to avoid single points of failure.
To achieve high IOPS and disk bandwidth throughput, the standard practices in storage volume performance optimization apply to Azure storage layout. For example, striping multiple disks together to create a larger disk volume improves IO performance. Enabling the read cache on storage containers that changes infrequently enhances the speed of data retrieval. For details about performance requirements, see SAP note 1943937 – Hardware Configuration Check Tool.
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