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RFC/BAPI licensing questions

SAP says each user must be a eprocurement end-user -- and web-based users order very infrequently and it would be impossible to justify the costs.

We have implemented an internal eprocurement web site that punches out to an external suppliers web site. The internal user then selects the goods and services required and a HTTP_POST returns the data back to an internal form for confirmation. The confirmation screen grabs the employee ID from the active directory and calls several BAPI's to obtain the org assignment data and a specific employee communication type. Finally the internal user confirms the order and submits the purchase order to SAP. We have spoken to SAP about the solution and they have indicated that each user must be a eprocurement end-user and web-based users order very infrequently and it would be impossible to justify the costs.

First, can you sum up RFC / BAPI licensing?

Second, if some middleware sits between our solution and SAP, for example Biztalk, and Biztalk is making the connection to SAP, (using one user license, to submit purchase orders, i.e. its a sync/async feeder) and we are talking to Biztalk, how would this affect the licensing structure?

And finally, how might we limit the licensing implications?

After having spent some time with the licensing gurus of SAP some time ago, I can tell you one thing: it is complex. You need to look at the specific contract you signed and if necessary negotiate with SAP about the licensing issues. There is no simple answer here.
This was last published in May 2004

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