Winshuttle mass data maintenance capabilities are terrific and supply a very rapid return on investment for SAP data management functions. The amount of data that can be queried and or updated can range from one record to thousands of records. This is all terrific, but you don’t want to slow down servers and get your infrastructure folks upset with you! Choosing run times, not overtaxing the servers, even throttling activities are all crucial in balancing the needs of the Master Data teams and application owners with the overall company requirements for general throughput. That is why Winshuttle offers terrific scheduling functionality.
There are other scheduling tools available, however. So when asked “Use Winshuttle’s scheduling capabilities or a third-party tool?” CPS has a recommendation. While our firm does specialize in third-party integrations that extend Winshuttle capabilities, we carefully evaluate pros and cons of various approaches. For this particular feature functionality, our recommendation is to use the Winshuttle scheduler and NOT use third-party scheduling. Here's why:
- While you can do some level of command line execution via a third-party scheduling tool, this requires studio (and potentially Excel) to be installed on the server that is executing the script. If there are failures, the third-party scheduling tool will not handle those messages because it isn't tracking the results of the run like Winshuttle is.
- For example, if scheduling a transaction script that has 100 lines in the Excel file and 10 records fail, the third-party scheduling tool won't be able to identify the issue, whereas the Winshuttle Scheduler is built to handle that very scenario.
- Winshuttle includes logic to properly store completed files in SharePoint and email users when completed. The third-party tool will likely not do that.
- Third-party scheduling tools are not end user friendly, generally relegated to IT having access, and require change management to get new jobs scheduled. Envision a data specialist that wants to create a simple data cleansing query using Query and have it run every Monday morning. Simple enough if you are using Foundation’s scheduling. If you need to use a third-party tool, this easy task can become a change management exercise and has less functionality.
- Transaction scripts are often scheduled only one time because the data is different every time the script needs to be run. Third-party scheduling tools are not utilized for 1-time run jobs due to the nature of change management requirements. The fact is, IT is the one that has the access. Envision a user that needs to do a one-time update of 10,000 records and would rather have that scheduled to run overnight instead of on their desktop during working hours. This can quickly be done by the user through Winshuttle Foundation. It would be more difficult to manage through a third-party tool because the user cannot access it themselves.
- The interaction with SAP requires someone to provide SAP credentials. Through Winshuttle, this is done by indicating which account to use, and Winshuttle will retrieve the credentials at run time. In a third-party tool, you have to store off the credentials in a specific Winshuttle encrypted file call an “ALF” (Automatic Login File) and place that on the server or the network so the third-party scheduling tool can access it. As if that isn’t cumbersome enough, each time passwords change, a new file must be generated and placed on the drive.
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