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Introduction to SAP HANA XS

Note: SAP has released HANA XS Advanced (XSA), which will supersedes HANA XS. We recommend you to read this article - Introduction to HANA XSA

What is SAP HANA XS?

SAP HANA XS is stands for SAP HANA Extended Application Services. Sometimes it is also referred as XS Engine or just XS. The main idea of SAP HANA XS is to embed a full featured application server, web server, and development environment within the SAP HANA appliance itself.

SAP HANA XS

Please note that XS is not a completely separate technology that happens to be installed on the same hardware server as SAP HANA; XS is actually an extension of, and tightly integrated into, the SAP HANA Database.

Important points about SAP HANA XS:

  • XS is a Small footprint application server / web server.
  • It is the basis for an application development platform inside SAP HANA.
  • It simplifies architecture and lowers the TCO (total cost of operation).
  • It provides easy access to SAP HANA database via HTTP-based consumption

Origin of SAP HANA XS:

XS Engine is a JavaScript application server based on the Mozilla SpiderMonkey engine. This is the same engine used in the Firefox Web browser.

Traditional 3-tier Applications Vs. SAP HANA XS 2-tier Applications:

Suppose you want to create a web page or an UI or a simple REST service on top of HANA table/view. There are 2 approach you can follow.

Traditional 3-tier Approach:
If you follow the traditional approach, then you it will involve a separate application server. For example you might use SAP NetWeaver ABAP or SAP NetWeaver Java to connect to HANA system and use ADBC (ABAP Database Connectivity) or JDBC (Java Database Connectivity) to pass SQL Statements to SAP HANA. 
Because of SAP HANA’s openness, you might also use Dot Net or any number of other environments or languages which support ODBC (Open Database Connectivity) as well. These scenarios are all still perfectly valid.
In particular when you are extending an existing application with new SAP HANA functionality, these approaches are very appealing because you easily and with little disruption integrate this SAP HANA functionality into your current architecture.

SAP HANA XS 2 tier architecture

SAP HANA Native Application – Using SAP HANA XS:
When you are building a new application from scratch which is SAP HANA specific, SAPHANA XS is a better option. With SAP HANA Extended Application Services you can build and deploy your application completely self-contained within SAP HANA.
This provides an opportunity for a lower cost of development and ownership. It also provides better performance because of the closeness of the application and control flow logic to the database.

SAP HANA XS

Advantages of SAP HANA XS:

The major advantages of SAP HANA XS are simplicity, low cost of operation and performance.
SAP HANA XS minimize the architecture layers. We can create applications which runs directly on HANA without additional external servers or system landscape. This simplified architecture decreases the total cost of operation.
Furthermore the performance is also better because of the closeness of the application and control flow logic to the database. In case of separate application server data has to be moved back and forth between application server and HANA database. But in case of HANA XS, it’s only an inter-process communication which again enhances the performance.




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