Brett Barwick, Principal Software Engineer at SIOS Technology, discusses what the typical maintenance/upgrade process looks like for a highly-available SAP HANA database. He also talks about the SIOS Application Recovery Kits which take a lot of those manual steps away from you as an administrator so that you can focus really just on the maintenance tasks that you need to perform on the servers.
Generally when people are protecting their database in a high availability cluster environments, and they want to do some maintenance, they’re generally going to be using a rolling upgrade process. At a high level, what this means is, so you have your database running on the primary server, so clients can still connect to it. You’re going to go ahead and upgrade, apply patches, do all your maintenance on your standby node. Then you can switch it over the database so that it’ll be running on the stand by node now. Once clients can reconnect to that, you can then go and upgrade the original primary node. And then you can switch back.
At that point, both servers are upgraded and you’re back in the original configuration that you had. I think the critical thing there are those two switchovers. When you switch from the primary to the secondary and you switch back, those are the parts as an administrator, while you’re sitting there thinking, okay, is it switched over yet? Because that’s the time when users can’t connect to the database. So that’s where you want everything to be very reliable, very automated. You want to be able to have confidence that the switchover’s going to take place quickly. All the correct steps are going to be followed.
So in SIOS Protection Suite for Linux, we have these things called Application Recovery Kits. Which you can basically think of, they’re kind of like plugins for different types of applications and databases. And we have them for all different kinds of things, but we do have one for HANA databases too, and that’s part of the job of the Recovery Kit. Is it gives you a quick and easy way to switch your resource from the primary to the secondary and back, it does it in an automated way, it follows all the right steps, all the best practices that SAP recommends and just takes a lot of those manual steps away from you as an administrator so that you can focus really just on the maintenance tasks that you need to perform on the servers.