back to article SAP Anywhere is gonna be absolutely nowhere: We're 'sunsetting' this service, biz tells punters

SAP has begun the process of shutting down its cloud-based SAP Anywhere suite for small businesses. The German enterprise giant is sending out notices to customers informing them it has decided to end the service. Organizations are being offered refunds on the remaining terms of their subscription contract, provided they agree …

  1. AMBxx Silver badge

    Run Simple?

    Hopefully, SAP will realise that if they want to sell to small businesses, they need small resellers. At the moment, you need to be a full Partner to sell any of their cloud stuff. As a small reseller, we're feeling left out. As SAP are obviously focussing more and more of their offering to Cloud only, I'm starting to work with more open source stuff.

    In fact, when I saw the headline, I thought this was about SAP SQL Anywhere - another product that nobody can see the point of. If you want a basic to mid-level database there is no shortage of open source offerings.

    How many more of these cloud offerings will be pulled before folk realise that putting your accounts information into a cloud service is a really dumb idea?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Run Simple?

      Hopefully, SAP will realise that if they want to sell to small businesses, they need small resellers.

      Before that, they need a product that is robust, meets the users needs, and is intuitive, quick and easy to use. I haven't used SAP Anywhere, but all their other products I've had the misfortune to encounter are absolute dogs when it comes to the user interface and intuitive operation.

    2. MyffyW Silver badge

      OMFG

      30 days notice is an absurdly short period of time to migrate to something else. SAP deserve to be hauled over the coals for that.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: OMFG

        30 days notice truly is shocking. And totally unreasonable. 3 months would be short notice - 1 month is insane.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "SQL Anywhere - another product that nobody can see the point of."

    Having used it extensively 20 years ago, I can assure you it was better then, than MySQL/MariaDB or Postgres are now... being "open source" is not an assurance nor for quality nor for features nor for speed. Just most people see the magic word: "free".

    In many ways, IT often went backwards because of that.

    1. AMBxx Silver badge

      Re: "SQL Anywhere - another product that nobody can see the point of."

      >>Having used it extensively 20 years ago

      Has it changed much in the last 20 years, or is it just another forgotten product on SAP's list?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Has it changed much in the last 20 years"

        I really don't know, but back then it was a blazing fast database with little footprint, excellent SQL language support and data types, very extensive procedural language and functions - no surprise since it was created by Watcom.

        We used it in smaller setups where Oracle or SQL Server were too big and expensive - and but for very large databases it was still better than both.

        On top of it it had an excellent management GUI with a code editor with syntax highlighting and a code debugger.

        Both MySQL and Postgres have today less features it had in those days, even in their "enterprise" versions, and if you look at MySQL Workbench or pgAdmin, you can only shrudder, because how lame and uncomfortable to use they are.

        People thinking open source brought the best software ever made don't know what they are talking about. In many situations it just killed healthy competition, and brought sub-par products because there are no money to be made, so nobody invests real money to deliver high-quality products - you just get acceptable ones.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "Has it changed much in the last 20 years"

          "In many situations it just killed healthy competition, and brought sub-par products because there are no money to be made,"

          Except very hard to see any of those situations. Corporations are still afraid of open source and won't use it at all if anything even near the capabilities is available as commercial product.

          "sub-par" is just an insult without merit: Simple programs have different uses and they aren't 'sub-par' just because they are simple.

          But they are very good at killing the market for overly complicated corporate behemoths no-one really wants. Dinosaurs die very slowly.

    2. Notwork

      Re: "SQL Anywhere - another product that nobody can see the point of."

      MariaDB and Postgres are available as enterprise editions with subscriptions and vendor support, an enterprise edition with a support contract is an assurance of quality.

      Now there is an abundance of graduates that have been using “free” Postgres (as an example) on a Raspberry pi or an old laptop running Centos since they were in short trousers and are now leaving Uni and joining the workforce having never had access to non-free products like SAP, IT hasn't gone backwards, it's just bloaty vendors like SAP and Oracle struggle to keep up.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "an enterprise edition with a support contract is an assurance of quality."

        It's just an assurance they will fix bugs.

        "Quality" has many dimensions. Sure, MySQL and Postgres does work well enough, especially as simple data dumps for web applications.

        From that, to be very high quality products with outstanding features and excellent management tools, for real database development, there are still a long, long way to go....

        1. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge

          Re: "an enterprise edition with a support contract is an assurance of quality."

          Fix bugs? Only so long as they agree it's not 'a feature'.....

    3. BagOfSpanners

      Re: "SQL Anywhere - another product that nobody can see the point of."

      I've been using it for 15 years, and I can see the point of it.

      SQLAnywhere fills a niche that no other product seems to address - a mainstream, low maintenance semi-embedded database engine with transparent whole-database encryption, that can be deployed to thousands of remote devices with low support costs.

      I haven't found any other product with these features, particularly the easy, transparent whole-database encryption. The main problem is the licence cost, which has caused me to move to SQL Server 2016 Express SP1 LocalDB, which only meets some of the requirements, but is "free".

  3. SecretSonOfHG

    Missing a crucial data point: how many customers?

    One feels that the number of actual, paying customers for this service is necessarily abismally small, otherwise SAP would not have cancelled it.

    What's next, HANA?

    1. AMBxx Silver badge

      Re: Missing a crucial data point: how many customers?

      No, users are being forced on to HANA. Maybe one day, SAP will be able to explain clearly what a magic database/App Server is.

      Confirmed for the chop is Lumira. Xcelsius is finally being killed off with the demise of Flash.

      They've started adding new stuff to Crystal Reports, so maybe the pointless 'Crystal Reports for Enterprise' will be chopped too.

      I'd also place money on the following being chopped (kudos is you know what they all do):

      SAP IQ (overlap with HANA)

      SAP Adaptive Server Platform (wtf is it?)

      SAP Data Integrator (way too expensive)

      SAP Powerdesigner

      SAP SQL Anywhere

      SAP ASE

      SAP Mobile Platform Developer

      SAP Predictive Analytics (outside bet, but I'd expect this to head cloudwards).

  4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "SAP Anywhere is giving its subscribers 30 days from when they receive their letters to move off the platform before their accounts are decommissioned."

    So SMBs without any regular IT staff are being given a month - over a holiday period - to migrate back onto in-house systems they don't have?

    They're obviously hoping that the customers will take the generous offer of return of the balance of their subscriptions (will SAP pay interest on those loans?) because they'll neither have time nor money to sue.

  5. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
    Pint

    Not quite the same meaning

    El Reg, "...offered refunds on the remaining terms of their subscription contract..."

    SAP, "...offer you a full refund of the fees paid by your company to SAP under the current term of your subscription."

    SAP appears to be offering a full refund paid under the current term. That seems to be different than "the remaining terms".

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Not quite the same meaning

      I noticed that, and would agree with you. Though SAP haven't exactly used clear wording. And it's still a shit offer - with only 30 days notice.

  6. Korev Silver badge

    Data export?

    Will SAP provide these small businesses (or the consultants working for them) an easy method to get their data out?

    1. MyffyW Silver badge

      Re: Data export?

      Indeed.

      One of the first questions to ask before going to any cloud service: How will you provide my data back to me on cessation of service?

      Next question: How will you assure me you've securely erased that data once I've left?

    2. SVV Silver badge

      Re: Data export?

      About 5 years ago, found myself working in a place that had moved all-in to a cloud provider using virtual servers for databases and application servers. There was a problem somewhere non technically related and I realised that the organisation and paying on time abilities of the finance dept. were not quite top notch. The potential horror of subscriptions lapsing unexpecedly suddenly felt very real.

      The only way to save my sanity (and possibly the existence of the comp\ny itself) was to start doing backups FROM the cloud, back onto site (and then also to off-site in physical media), where at least I was sure it was handled well. Often wondered how many migrations of systems and data to the cloud have also resulted in implementations of backups from the cloud when this risk was contemplated.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    SAP Nowhere

    I was very involved in an aborted SAP Anywhere implementation. The enthusiasm of the SAP team was great, but the actual product was just miles away from what was needed, and they couldn't seem to understand the gaps. There seemed to have been a strategic assumption made that small shops and the like are fundamentally simple things so you can just chuck a basic templated system at them and it'll be fine. But there were huge gaps in the solution, an absence of sensible configuration options and legions of show stopping issues, which they were taking into the 'change queue', never to be seen again. The true horror was that thanks to favourable circumstances we had proper Analysts and IT support available to look at this and spot the yawning holes, their actual target market wouldn't have that luxury and likely would wander into the minefield oblivious. It was a nice idea, but once again SAP demonstrates that you can't just shrink an enterprise tool into small businesses, you need to take a different approach.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I thought everyone knew that SAP is crap...

    ^ well didn't they?

  9. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Magic Party Tricks ..... with All the Fun of the Fair, Standard Ware

    That SAP confirming statement is beautifully enigmatic. Is SAP planning a colossal acquisition plugging missing powers whilst blocking exploitation of 0Day Vulnerabilities ...... and all for relative p€anu£$?

    Although billions nowadays is the default starting position and proposition to generate any phorm of Stellar Interest in COSMIC AIdVenturing for the Great and the Good and the Masses to Understand and Follow Zealously and Religiously.

    Be able to Do that Magic Party Trick and its Worth is inestimable. Relative p€anu£$ in the sum of billions was never better spent, says I, but I would say that, wouldn't I, just so we all know what's for what and why.

    After all, it is only pretty paper being exchanged and laundered to energise the likes of brand spanking new Novel Virtual AIdventures. Worlds are awash with banked cash and private stashes just sitting there doing practically nothing other than charging capital the payment of arbitrary interest for the pleasure of doing practically nothing other than capital charging the payment of arbitrary interest to invent profit.... Money for nothing.

  10. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    We will be working closely with our customers to help them transition off the product and to find sell them a new SAP solution that best fits their needs costs more

    FTFY

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      A Perfect Fix and Titanic Hit

      A Fabulous Home and Safe Haven for Surplus to Requirement Quantitatively Eased Funds, Doctor Syntax.

      Do SAP do New Solution Programs with and for Autonomous Virtual Machinery ...... Hosting and Servering SMARTR AIgent Systems of Elite Exclusive Executive Administration? Do they have Free and Unfettered Access to SMARTR AIgents whose Needs and Feeds they can Seed and Savour and Flavour with Additional Favours.

      Or perhaps SAP is not into So Avant Garde Lead Processing of Programs for Systems Administrations of Executions/Media Recorded Broad Band Casted Presentations.

  11. GrapeBunch Silver badge

    So much easier to poison a well wot's got its lid gone.

    Thank goodness they aren't like other software companies that, instead of burying the zombie, keep giving it strychnine and fentanyl in just the right amounts to keep the customer in stasis, and then--AI Conference? I'm not here for an AI Conference, young lady. Though I did bring Bessie. In the trailer.

  12. CentralCoasty
    Trollface

    I love SAP.... always means plenty of contract work fixing what should really be "simple" business issues.

    On a personal note, moved my coffee shop onto a new accounting system a couple of months ago - longest job was working out the chart of accounts and then making sure my monthly journals were correct. And even then when I got it wrong I was able to go back in later and fix it up without any problems.

    30 days for business larger than me though is going to be a tough call though.

  13. PeterM42
    Thumb Down

    SAP =

    = CRAP.

    'Nuff said.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Alien

    Suckers

    The Internet is NoWHERE,

    "The Check is in the Mail",

    "Like Never Man",

    "whad'y I care",

    Nuttin,

    Zilch,

    Zero,

    Nada,

    Nothing.

    Just some fatuous excrement Humans started to exude, after a thing called Computer Technology was developed.

    And you thought it would last forever, be an archive, a repository of existence.

    Commercialism strikes again, Crap=+1 Idealism=0

    Puny humans.

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