What is SAP HANA and Why It is Getting So Popular ?


Before get into the topic, let’s imagine a situation where you own a retail store that wants to shower its loyal customers with discounts on their next purchase. Suppose a customer just got6 something and passed his credit card to the executive.

The mean time when the executive swipes his card, the internal system instantly gives him the details that last time he bought a pair of canvas shoes at your store. You immediately offered him the discount or some special offers on a trouser or shirt he might be interested in, which will match his canvas shoes!

Well, it’s the supremacy of real-time data analysis & decision-making that improves the performance of the business manifold!

Now, let us shed some lights on SAP HANA and why it is getting so popular.


SAP HANA is the cutting-edge Next-Gen platform or can say database that drives real-time analytics and applications. It helps businesses to assess business operations based on Big Data in real-time in nano-seconds or at a speed of lightning!

Reasons to use SAP HANA

Well, SAP HANA boasts several incredible features, which set it apart from age-old databases. Let’s take a look at its incredible features and understand why SAP HANA is getting popular:

Columnar Data Storage: You might be familiar with the data storage system in traditional databases, aren’t you? Traditional databases store information/ data in tabular form means rows and columns. But, SAP HANA includes a unique feature- Columnar Data Storage. It helps linear structuring of memory, unlike two-dimensional data structure that is arranged in rows and columns. Hence, in SAP HANA, a table can be demonstrated either in the form of row-order or column order. A Row-order arrangement stores a table as a series of records while a column-order arrangement stores the data in the adjoining memory locations.

Why this approach is so great? Well, there is a valid reason. Columnar data storage facility helps run-length encoding, dictionary coding and cluster coding that are utterly competent compression techniques. Also, it avoids the need for additional index structures as once the data has been stored in columns it’s like creating an incorporated index for every column. Once we remove additional indexes, operations get simplified and it accelerates the column scanning speed to the greater extent and helps read operations effectively.

In-Memory Database System: An in-memory database system (IMDS) stores data fully in the main memory, unlike traditional or on-disk database management systems that store data in a disk storage mechanism. In-memory database systems are getting a lot of popularity today because it is much faster to work with data in memory than writing to and reading from a file system. An in-memory system is the only way to handle a real-time data future that consist of new data types such as social media monitoring and Web-automated sensors and meter readings. SAP HANA gives the programmer the creativity to develop applications that incorporate business control logic at the database layer. It eliminates the waiting time for data models to change or time required to load the redundant data storage required by traditional business warehouse solutions.

Parallel Processing: SAP HANA enables parallel processing that is one of the major parts of efficient data analysis. It’s evident that SAP HANA features columnar data storage in which searching of a particular data or aggregating the data is executed in loops over an array in neighboring memory locations. Contrary, in traditional row-oriented method, these operations tend to be sluggish as data related to the same column is available across the memory. It also facilitates quick data loading into the cache memory of the CPU. As the data is vertically divided into a column-based method, parallel processing is achievable with the help of multiple processing cores. Also, if there is the need of more columns to be searched, each of these tasks can be divided into the diverse processor core. Further, to accelerate the process, operations performed on one column can be parallelized by splitting the column into different parts, each of which can easily be processed by various processor cores. This helps in parallel processing.

It Provides Real-time Analytics: Real-time analytics simply means that there is no BW (business warehouse) phase needed for creating reports. It uses tools such as Objects Explorer or pivot tables in excel to analyze data. SAP HANA combines online analytical & transactional processing into a single database and with real-time in-memory analytics it’s possible to process even large data into seconds. Now decision-making has become smarter and accurate in the every-second updating market scenario. SAP HANA offers a 306-degree view of the business operations by combining and modeling data from different data sources. It is capable of combining and updating bulks of data sets in real-time.

Besides these, there are many other features that play a major role in its popularity.



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