Transitioning to SAP S/4HANA Part 3: On-Premise? Cloud? Or Both? | SUSE Communities

Transitioning to SAP S/4HANA Part 3: On-Premise? Cloud? Or Both?


Our new white paper “Migration to SAP S/4HANA – Master the Way into the Future with SUSE.” addresses the decision made by SAP to run its in-memory database exclusively on the Linux operating system as of 2025. But you have some flexibility in deciding where to deploy your systems.

In my first two blogs of this series, we looked at the overall situation and outlined key mission-critical functions. But there are still important decisions to be made, including those relating to the available deployment options for the new Linux SAP environment. Which scenario is right for your business?

If you want to use SAP S/4HANA and the SAP HANA in-memory database to improve your internal control system and ensure greater alignment with your business requirements, an on-premise solution is the right model for you. If, on the other hand, you are looking for a highly scalable and extremely flexible infrastructure, you might also want to consider private or public cloud models. Other possibilities include a hybrid environment leveraging multiple clouds or a combination of on-premise and cloud solutions.

Decisions of this kind generally require thorough evaluations, which take time. When you add on the time required for the actual migration(s), 2025 does not seem so far away after all.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is the operating system of choice

The good news is that the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is the operating system of choice for both on-premise and cloud solutions in the SAP environment. And it is the ideal operating system for four of the leading non-SAP cloud platforms as well, providing the tools required to ensure a smooth and virtually risk-free migration.

The on-premise solution with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications offers the full range of SAP S/4HANA functions as well as extensive customization options. Annual updates for software fixes and new features are included and the on-premise solution supports all industry solutions.

HANA Enterprise Cloud (HEC) is SAP’s managed private cloud and includes the full range of SAP S/4HANA functions. It runs mainly on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications and uses OpenStack. The open, dynamic, reliable platform is effortlessly scalable. Additionally SAP recommends the SUSE Linux Enterprise High Availability Extension for its 99.999% availability in automated system replication in HANA Enterprise Cloud (HEC).

SAP Cloud Platform is an in-memory cloud by SAP. It can be used to create cloud-based applications such as services for integration, enterprise mobility, collaboration, or analytics. It should also be available outside SAP data centers in the near future. It is powered by SUSE OpenStack Cloud and SUSE Enterprise Storage.

SUSE supports four leading public cloud providers

SUSE supports all SAP S/4HANA public cloud options. Especially when using a public cloud, operating system security is another important factor to consider. The comprehensive security package for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server protects systems against all known security issues.

Microsoft Azure provides on-demand, hyper-scalable resources and integrates seamlessly with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications. SAP HANA applications can be created, tested, and deployed using agile methodology on Azure virtual machines, which can be scaled to provide up to 3.8 TB of RAM. Replication and disaster recovery are comparable to the replication, operational reliability, and performance of the on-premise solution on SUSE.

Amazon Web Services (AWS): Implementing SAP HANA in the AWS cloud using SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications provides a stable public cloud that enables businesses to deploy new technology in a highly available, fault-tolerant, and cost-efficient way. SUSE has developed special SAP HANA High Availability Resource Agents for Amazon X1 instances, for example. With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, large in-memory applications and databases that SAP has certified can be operated in the AWS cloud.

Google Compute Engine is available on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications and offers scalability from individual instances through to global cloud computing. Customers can also consume SUSE on a pay-per-minute basis.

The IBM Cloud helps enterprises to be more agile and reduce operating costs since they only pay for what they use. With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications, you can quickly create and provision business-critical workloads on SAP HANA in the cloud.

I hope this series has been informative for you and encourages you to start planning your transition to SAP S/4HANA. You can get more information in our whitepaper Migration to SAP S/4HANA—Master the Way into the Future with SUSE.”

Follow me on Twitter @MichaelDTabron.

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  • vinod says:


    Nice helpful blog series on transition to SAP S/4HANA. You might answered many of the questions for the SAP consultants and clients out there.

  • Michael Tabron says:

    I’m glad that you found this useful.

  • princy says:


    That’s a Fantastic post. the step by step guide to SAPS/4HANA Transitioning to SAP S/4HANA

    thanks a lot.

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    Michael TabronI'm a SUSE Product Marketing Manager focused primarily on open source solutions for SAP applications across all platforms. I joined SUSE in 2015, and have over 20 years of experience with hardware and software marketing.