Connect to the Future with NetApp and SAP

In today’s highly networked world, innovation requires collaboration and continuity in order to successfully drive business. With NetApp (NASDAQ: NTAP) and SAP AG, customers and partners benefit from integrated, end-to-end solutions from the global network of SAP® Co-Innovation Labs. As one of the four founding sponsors of the first SAP Co-Innovation Lab in Palo Alto, Calif., NetApp delivers both leading-edge solution expertise and the global storage platform for all SAP Co-Innovation Labs in locations that include Bangalore, India and Tokyo, Japan. Today, NetApp announced an increased investment to support the SAP Co-Innovation Labs Network, including the new SAP HANA® Center of Excellence Switzerland in Zurich.

The first SAP Co-Innovation Lab was opened in 2007. Since then, SAP has opened a network of labs and facilities featuring showrooms, engineering facilities, data centers, and project resources. Its mission is to facilitate project-based co-innovation between SAP and its partners on global and regional levels and in a real-world context. Working closely with SAP for more than a decade, NetApp has a leading role in driving data management innovation for customers.

Developments Resulting from Efforts of NetApp and SAP in the SAP Co-Innovation Lab


  • The Cisco® and NetApp® FlexPod® data center solution is an example of how, through cooperation with SAP, NetApp has transformed innovation into a solution. Started as an exploratory proof of concept called “Lean Cloud Reference Architecture,” NetApp and its partners evolved the concept beyond a pure hardware stack and built it on the FlexPod shared infrastructure. Through integration with SAP applications, processes, and workflows, the FlexPod solution offers customers greater value.
  • Working closely with the SAP Co-Innovation Lab and the SAP CTO team, NetApp and partners enhanced the FlexPod solution by developing SAP solution-specific core services and workflow descriptions. The innovative use of proven NetApp technologies such as FlexClone®, Snapshot™, and SnapManager® helps customers reduce risk and cost and to accelerate SAP lifecycle management and run SAP landscapes in the cloud. The solution is based on the pretested FlexPod design architecture by Cisco and NetApp and integrates VMware® cloud infrastructure.
  • Today, customers have a broad choice for FlexPod automation and orchestration that leverage open APIs, including Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud, VMware vCloud Director™, and VMware vCenter™ Server. The new integration with VMware vCenter Orchestrator provides out-of-the box workflows and enables administrators to automate existing manual tasks and execute workflows.

In-Memory Computing, Including SAP HANA

Through involvement in the SAP Co-Innovation Lab and hardware partner Cisco, NetApp is a major stakeholder in the new SAP HANA Center of Excellence Switzerland. It is dedicated to SAP HANA, performing proof of concepts, developing customer-specific demo scenarios, and executing development tasks. The lab has the latest hardware and software versions on site, including the SAP ERP application, the SAP BusinessObjects™ solution portfolio, and the SAP NetWeaver® technology platform, all integrated with NetApp data management.

Real-life Disaster-Recovery Simulation Between Tokyo and Osaka

A Japanese system integration partner posed a challenge to participants in the SAP Co-Innovation Lab: Create an efficient disaster-recovery concept. Five partners, including NetApp, worked together to meet the challenge. One scenario was set up in the Tokyo data center of the SAP Co-Innovation Lab, and a temporary one was set up at the member’s site in Osaka, backed by NetApp business continuity solutions. The scenario was tested successfully, and soon gained broader interest, because it was simulated shortly before the tsunami hit Japan’s coast in March of 2011.

NetApp Contributes to SAP Co-Innovation Labs with High Levels of Efficiency and Flexibility

NetApp solutions provide the storage and data-management backbone of the global network of SAP Co-Innovation Labs, helping to meet the challenges of limited resources and a global shared-project infrastructure. Working concurrently with many partners worldwide involves sensitivity to data privacy and security, as well as to timely closing conditions. Projects require different landscapes based on solutions from both SAP and its partners.

Building on agile NetApp storage and data-management solutions, as well as leveraging full virtualization and cloud capabilities, the SAP Co-Innovation Lab network is able to save resources, reduce SAP landscape provisioning to hours, and easily support 140 concurrent landscapes worldwide. Customers and partners can concentrate on their application challenges rather than on infrastructure needs.

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