Long downtime, high costs

It’s then a choice between two evils. Testing with old data should always be a non-starter. You may well decide to go into production based on a flawless test in development, but problems can then still occur. Because, in part due to the complexity of the SAP system, the slightest difference or an update in the live environment – when compared to the non-production system – can lead to major, and therefore unpredictable, problems. In this case, your testing would be of no use.

You may then feel like carrying out a complete refresh before you start testing. This means that your entire dataset is transferred to the test environment in one go. However, it can be a costly and time-consuming process. In some cases, it can mean downtime for your system of as much as a week. Quite apart from the inconvenience to your business operations, you’re also making a mistake by copying a whole lot of data that you don’t really need. “If an SAP system has been running for 20 years, you have 20 years of data, but likely only the data from the past three to six months will be relevant for testing. Why replicate the data from all those other years?” says Casper Messchendorp, Account Executive at EPI-USE Labs.

Ctac can offer a solution for this problem in the SAP-certified Data Sync Manager (DSM) suite from EPI-USE Labs. DSM offers powerful options for copying, cloning and anonymising data. For example, you can ask the Data Sync Manager to only copy the relevant dataset to the non-production system, which will significantly reduce downtime. Schedule the synchronisation for Friday evening, and by Saturday everything is ready. This will save your organisation a lot of time and money. In many cases, you can save as much as 60% of the storage capacity.

Anonymised data

High costs and lengthy downtime are not the only challenges that businesses are currently facing. Security is another important point. A whole host of measures are applied to safeguard data security in the live environment. This changes when the same data is copied to a development or test environment. Confidential information may suddenly become accessible to users of the development or test environment for whom it is not intended. This is highly undesirable, especially when it involves sensitive personal data. “That can lead to fines of as much as 4% of annual turnover, or €20 million, whichever is higher”, warns Messchendorp.

The Data Sync Manager software from EPI-USE Labs also provides a solution for this. The DSM suite ensures that certain data is anonymised when preparing the copy for transfer to a non-production environment, based on selection criteria. The integrity of the data remains intact, so that useful and complete testing can be carried out.

And another plus is that the data never leaves your system, as the Data Sync Manager runs on your local SAP landscape.

Ctac and EPI-USE Labs

Ctac has partnered with EPI-USE Labs to be able to provide the complete range of security measures, combined with substantial time and cost savings. Founded 35 years ago, and originally from South Africa, EPI-USE Labs have been operating in Europe for over 20 years. EPI-USE Labs also believe they have a social responsibility. “We’re involved in the preservation of elephants and rhinoceros through improving the economic situation for the local population”, says Messchendorp. “EPI-USE Labs does this by donating 1% of its turnover, and by giving employees the opportunity to get involved in these projects.”

Ctac’s collaboration with EPI-USE Labs is based on the principle that Ctac knows what will be useful for its customers, and that EPI-USE Labs has a solution that fits the bill. A 97% renewal rate for the Data Sync Manager suite shows that almost all customers find this product highly satisfactory. It consists of a number of modules, and we check for each customer or situation which module or combination of modules will deliver the best solution or greatest improvement.

Written by Thijs Paepen

 Sales Manager Cloud Solutions


[email protected]