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Loading data from SAP including SAP ECC (ERP), SAP BW (SAP BI), SAP CRM, HANA

Most users know the file based option to create a text file (prepared by ABAP programms) and load this data with the CSV Input step, but there are other ways:

  • You can use the Webservices Lookup step and load queries or infoproviders via XML for Analysis. This does not work out-of-the-box and needs special customizing and writing special transformations, SAP BI may be needed. The OLAP Input step simplifies this and was tested successfully.
  • Another option is using Open Hub Service within a SAP BI environment: "BI objects such as InfoCubes, DataStore objects, or InfoObjects (attributes or texts) can function as open hub data sources. You can select database tables or flat files as open hub destinations. Both a full and a delta mode are also available as the extraction mode."
  • Further information about accessing SAP CRM (e.g. the data model) can be found over here: 
  • In general SAP recommends using Enterprise Services aka web services to access the functionality remotely:
  • You may access the SAP tables direct in the database, but there are security considerations and there may be unknown side effects not going via the application level.
  • The SAP HANA database has been added to the list of available database connections in Pentaho PDI 5.4. See the JDBC Driver Reference and Set Up a Database Connection topics in the Pentaho Help site for more detailed information. Pentaho PDI 6.0 added support for the SAP Hana Bulk Loader.
  • It's also possible to connect via a transformation step and access the application level connecting to SAP ECC (ERP) data. At this time there are three steps available with similar functionality:
SAP Connector / Step SAP Input ITN Connector ERP godesys SAP®-Connector (formerly ProERPConn)
License Open Source Open Source Commercial
Developed/supported by Aschauer EDV GmbH it-novum GmbH godesys AG (formerly PRORATIO GmbH)
Distribution Included Plug-In Plug-In
Supported PDI Versions 4.x 3.x, 4.x 3.x, 4.x
Connection Method RFC via SAP JCo RFC via SAP JCo RFC via SAP JCo
Table Access via RFC_READ_TABLE
or customized RFC/BAPI
or customized RFC/BAPI
Partial table load (filter) yes yes yes
Chunk loading of big tables via customization via customization
yes (automatic)
Unlimited record length via customization via customization yes (option 1: automatic selection of the suitable modified RFC_READ_TABLE or option 2: automatic split and combine of the fields using the default RFC_READ_TABLE. This method in the background ensures unlimited record length.)
Data type support for negative packed, floating points and raw hex fields
no no yes
Search for tables/fields in the user interface (data dictionary)
no (Table DD02L could be selected) no (Table DD02L could be selected) yes (via user interface)
Lookup / join functionality
via customization via customization yes
Call other RFCs (also for calling functions to read, look-up and write back)
yes no yes (since version 4.0 of the plug-in)
Call BAPIs (also for calling business functions to read, look-up and write back) yes
no yes (since version 4.0 of the plug-in)

Please see also the feature request: Combine the functionality of the SAP Input step and ITN Connector ERP

Transferring data to SAP BW (SAP BI)

There are two main options to load data to SAP BW:

  1. Create a flat file (fixed or CSV file) and follow the procedures documented in Data Transfer from Flat Files (suitable for larger amounts of data).
  2. Create a XML file and use a SOAP service via the HTTP step and follow the procedures documented in SOAP-Based Transfer of Data (suitable for regularly supplying SAP BW with limited amounts of data for each call). see also XML DataSource (BW DataSource with SOAP Connection)

This documentation is maintained by the Pentaho community, and members are encouraged to create new pages in the appropriate spaces, or edit existing pages that need to be corrected or updated.

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