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Upgrade Support for SAP Fiori Launchpad Content in SAP S/4HANA 2021

New releases bring new features, new functions and new apps for your launchpad. Some of these new apps replace existing apps – but how can you bring these successor apps into your content?

SAP S/4HANA 2021 now supports you in identifying deprecated and obsolete apps in your content and replacing them by their successor apps.

Background Information about the app lifecycle

What does ‘obsolete’ and ‘deprecated’ mean? When do I need to switch to a successor app?

  • A deprecated app is still operational but a newer version (successor app) exists
  • An obsolete app is not supported anymore and must not be used any longer

Let’s say app A is operational in release x and in the following release x+1 it’s set to ‘deprecated’. In that release, app A is still operational, and you may keep using it – but it has already been replaced by a successor app in the SAP template content.

In the release after that (release x+2), the app A is set to ‘obsolete’ – it’s not supported anymore and must not be used any longer.

Lifecycle%20of%20an%20app

When is the best time to move from a predecessor app to its successor?

Ideally, you want to replace a predecessor app with its successor as soon as possible.

Once a successor app exists, any improvements will be made to the successor app. The predecessor app will not be improved further.

Since successor apps often contain new features requested by customers, you are likely to find several desirable new features in the successor app. These new features often include improved options for extending the app to meet your custom needs, such as support for UI Adaptation and custom fields and logic.

Because the successor app is a new app there are likely to be some significant differences for users so you will need to consider how and when to retrain the impacted users.

To make retraining easier, it’s worth checking if the successor app has a matching tutorial provided in the User Assistance for your release.

Refer to SAP Fiori for SAP S/4HANA – How to setup the User Assistant in your S/4HANA Fiori launchpad

App lifecycle status on transaction level

SAP maintains the lifecycle status on transaction level – each app will correspond to a transaction that contains information about its lifecycle status and about possible successor apps.

In SAP S/4HANA 2021, this has already been implemented for the leading UI technologies and the deprecated/obsolete information is taken into consideration in ‘Search for Obsolete Applications (2d)’ in transaction su25.

High-level flow for upgrading launchpad content

Here’s a high-level overview of the flow:

  1. Get a first overview – and take a snapshot
  2. Analyze your launchpad content: which obsolete or deprecated apps does it contain?
  3. Explore successor apps and decide which apps you want to replace
  4. Add successor apps to your business catalogs
  5. Optional: Add the new apps to the layout
  6. Cleanup: remove deprecated/obsolete apps

Step 1: Get a first overview – and take a snapshot

Use Launchpad Content Aggregator to get a first overview of obsolete and deprecated apps in your content.

This useful tool can be accessed via transaction code /ui2/flpca – or via ‘Goto – Launchpad Content Aggregator’ from the menu of Launchpad Content Manager (transaction /ui2/flpcm_cust).

Select your roles and run the report to get an aggregated overview of obsolete/deprecated apps and their successors. You can customize the table layout – or simply export the table to a spreadsheet and do your magic there.

Best practice: Take a snapshot of your content before you do any changes. Use Launchpad Content Aggregator to export the content overview to a spreadsheet – later on, you can use this as a reference.

Step 2: Analyze your launchpad content

Use Launchpad Content Manager – Client-Specific (transaction /UI2/FLPCM_CUST) to analyze deprecated/obsolete apps in your content and identify successor apps.

Analyze your Business Roles

Launchpad Content Manager provides a detailed overview of your launchpad content and you can analyze your business catalogs and roles for deprecated/obsolete content.

Start in the ‘Roles‘ tab to analyze your business roles – the column ‘Transaction Status‘ alerts you if a role contains one or more deprecated/obsolete apps. (In Launchpad Content Manager, apps show up as ‘tile/target mapping combinations.)

Note: since business roles are client-dependent, this tab is only visible in the client-dependent version of Launchpad Content Manager (transaction /ui2/flpcm_cust).

Analyze your Business Catalogs

In the ‘Catalogs‘ tab, the transaction status tells you if a catalog contains one or more deprecated/obsolete apps. This information is available in the client-specific as well as in the cross-client version of Launchpad Content Manager. (Transactions /ui2/flpcm_cust and /ui2/flpcm_conf respectively).

Click on a catalog in the ‘Catalogs’ list. On the lower part of the screen, you’ll see the content of the catalog and be able to select a tile/target mapping combination. For this, you can show possible successor apps – and later, once you have decided that you want to use one of the successor apps, you can directly add it to your content.

Step 3: Explore successor apps and decide which app to use

You know from the previous step which of your roles contain obsolete or deprecated apps – and you know their successor apps. Now you can explore these successor apps in the SAP Fiori Apps Reference Library to find out more about their features.

For testing and evaluating new apps hands-on, you can use rapid activation tasklists to activate related services in a sandbox system. For more info, see SAP Note 3085127 – Composite SAP note: Rapid Activation for SAP Fiori in SAP S/4HANA 2021.

Step 4: Add the successor apps to your content

Once you have decided which apps to replace, you can do this in Launchpad Content Manager in your Development environment using the Show/Add Successors function, as described in Step 2 – Analyze your Business Catalogs. You can choose to add the new tile and target mapping in one step using the Add Tile/TM Reference button.

If you have separate sandbox and development environments, you can activate the apps in your updated custom business catalogs in your development environment using the task list SAP_FIORI_FCM_CONTENT_ACTIVATION. This will activate the successor apps and update your custom business role at the same time. Make sure you review (and if needed adjust) the authorizations for your successor app, e.g. using program PRGN_COMPARE_ROLE_MENU.

Step 5 (Optional): Add the new apps to the layout

In the previous step, you have already added successor apps to the business catalog. This means that users can already access them via App Finder.

As part of launchpad personalization, users can also place these successor apps onto their

  • ‘My home’ space or any other page (when using spaces and pages)
  • home page (when using groups).

If you want to add a new app centrally to your users’ pages, use Manage Launchpad Pages (or Launchpad Designer if you’re still working with groups).

Step 6: Cleanup – removing old apps

In step 4, you have added successor apps to your content and in step 5, you have made sure that the new app appears in the right places.

Now it’s time to remove the deprecated/obsolete apps from your content and your pages or group – otherwise your users might see and use obsolete apps in their launchpads, especially if old and new apps have the same intent (semantic object – action).

If there are apps you don’t need any longer, clean up your content by removing them. If you wish you can do this as a 2-step process to aid the transition from the old to the new, e.g.

  1. Remove the apps firstly from launchpad layouts, from your pages (using Manage Launchpad Pages) or groups (using Launchpad Designer). This encourages users to move to the successor app by making the successor app easier to find. They can still access the predecessor app via the App Finder.
  2. When you want to stop users using the predecessor apps altogether, remove the apps from your business catalogs (using Launchpad Content Manager)

Now your users can enjoy their new apps.

More Information

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