Wednesday, October 20, 2010

SAP TechEd on Wednesday, October 20th

As promised, I'm going to follow up on some of the challenges that Gregg Dippold had commented on. To the best of my knowledge, all of the information that I have reported here is public as of TechEd. I have chosen not to share some information as I felt that it was still to tentative to report. All of this information, of course, subject to change.

The short answer is: SAP NetWeaver Identity Management 7.2 is a huge leap forward.  It will be more customizable, have better tools for managing roles and connect to more systems than ever before. So here's Gregg's list of challenges and what I've learned so far.

Challenge 1: Self Service is Not Intuitive for Unsophisticated Users

Version 7.2 will be adding additional functionality to create custom user interfaces using an Open API. It might not make it into the initial release, but look for it in one of the 7.2 Service packs.

Challenge 2: Fragmented Documentation
Don't know about this one, but I can say that the documentation has been getting steadily better, so I'm cautiously optimistic.

Challenge 3: Limitations in the Staging Environment

I think we're all aware of some of the limitations in the Import/Export.  Look for some changes that will make transferring configurations between environments much easier. Among these will be an interface from the Web UI to export the entire configuration including repositories to a single XML file. Also to be included in 7.2 is a configuration analyzer which will review the entire configuration and check for objects 7.1 that will not work in 7.2 and do some basic checking for inefficient practices (such as queries that use aValue rather than SearchValue.

Note: I forgot to add that this utility will also export associated VDS configurations as well.

Challenge 4: Job Customization Frequently Requires Custom JavaScript

I don't know that this can ever really go away, as there needs to be some mechanism for implementing transformations of attributes and back end processing.  To make things more interesting, we'll also see more use of the extension framework which will be JAVA based and open up some new and exciting possibilities.  We can also expect to see some changes to the standard provisioning framework that will make connectivity to SAP and non-SAP systems a bit easier.

Challenge 5: Few Useful Reports Available in Default Installation

This could also be a big item as 7.2 will now talk to the Business Warehouse. From what I saw during the presentation these reports will be much better than the previous Jasper and Crystal based reports.

That's about it for the moment.  Heading to a session on VDS shortly.  Hopefully, I'll get some more information that I'm free to share.
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