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S/4 migration and the licensing question

The migration to S/4 Hana can take SAP customers around two to three years, depending on the size of the landscape. In addition to the technical migration, the SAP contract will also be converted. This is a great opportunity to finally clean up existing legacy issues.
Vera Vianden, Aspera
October 26, 2018
S/4 migration and the licensing question
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

SAP recommends that its customers switch to the new S/4 technology at an early stage - even before the end of maintenance for the classic SAP Business Suite announced for 2025.

Measuring S/4 in the future

Essentially, nothing has changed in SAP's measurement methodology. There will still be user-based licenses as well as consumption-specific metrics.

Licenses can be billed in three ways: Purchase plus maintenance, rent or according to consumption. Depending on the type of purchase, the measurement also changes.

This is done regardless of where the SAP systems are operated (on-premise, private cloud or public cloud). However, each license type has its own measurement tools.

If you take a closer look at the PKL, it quickly becomes clear that SAP is using the changeover to redefine many details of the license metrics. For example, licensing users on the basis of their authorizations is mandatory for the customer.

Vera Vianden

The number of different user types has also been significantly reduced, which in turn reduces the possibility of differentiation. SAP points out in its current list of prices and conditions that the use of S/4 is based on potential usage.

Which in turn means that in the S/4 systems, the authorizations assigned there for the necessary license type must be taken into account and not the actual usage. An optimized authorization concept, which also takes the license metrics into account, is the basis for an optimal S/4 license migration.

Old licenses, new model

With the Compatibility pack for S/4, SAP offers the option of continuing to use previously licensed functionalities in the new S/4 world. During an S/4 migration, in addition to the system requirements and the check of the components used, the authorizations must also be checked and adjusted if necessary.

In S/4, some transactions have been deleted without replacement or replaced by new transactions and SAP Fiori apps. With S/4 there are three new user licenses: Professional Use (3500 euros), Functional Use (1200 euros) and Productivity Use (300 euros).

In order to use these correctly in the future, it is a good idea to adapt the authorization concept to the underlying solution functions during the above-mentioned review.

What customers can do

To ensure the success of the license migration, three main steps are required.

First: The optimization of existing license requirements based on actual usage.

Second: The introduction of an authorization concept that takes into account the license metrics and adapts the authorizations to the usage.

And third: an analysis of the effects during an S/4 migration. With these three steps and a SAM tool to automate the steps, SAP customers create continuous transparency about their own licensing needs, even in the new hybrid system landscape.

Vera Vianden, Aspera

Vera Vianden is Account and Project Delivery Manager at Aspera.

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Working on the SAP basis is crucial for successful S/4 conversion. 

This gives the Competence Center strategic importance for existing SAP customers. Regardless of the S/4 Hana operating model, topics such as Automation, Monitoring, Security, Application Lifecycle Management and Data Management the basis for S/4 operations.

For the second time, E3 magazine is organizing a summit for the SAP community in Salzburg to provide comprehensive information on all aspects of S/4 Hana groundwork. All information about the event can be found here:

SAP Competence Center Summit 2024


Event Room, FourSide Hotel Salzburg,
At the exhibition center 2,
A-5020 Salzburg

Event date

June 5 and 6, 2024

Regular ticket:

€ 590 excl. VAT


Event Room, Hotel Hilton Heidelberg,
Kurfürstenanlage 1,
69115 Heidelberg

Event date

28 and 29 February 2024


Regular ticket
EUR 590 excl. VAT
The organizer is the E3 magazine of the publishing house AG. The presentations will be accompanied by an exhibition of selected SAP partners. The ticket price includes the attendance of all lectures of the Steampunk and BTP Summit 2024, the visit of the exhibition area, the participation in the evening event as well as the catering during the official program. The lecture program and the list of exhibitors and sponsors (SAP partners) will be published on this website in due time.