Archiving SAP Software – an Important Step when Switching to Third-Party Support

Spinnaker Support’s ISO 9001:2015-certified archival process delivers substantial value when transitioning to third-party support.

September 21, 2017 | Dan Diaz-Gilligan | Archive Analyst

Archiving as a Jump Start to Third-Party Support

Software archiving, as it relates to third-party SAP support, is the download and storage of relevant software and data located on the SAP Service Marketplace website. Timing is a critical component of the software archiving process, and should be conducted after a user has decided to switch to third-party SAP support, but before their contract with SAP ends.

Spinnaker Support considers software archiving to be one of the most important parts of the third-party support onboarding process for a variety of reasons.

  • SAP users are legally entitled to all releases and patches made available on SAP’s service marketplace up until the date their SAP support contract terminates. Software archiving allows clients to retain, access, implement, and use their enterprise software that they are legally entitled to as defined in SAP contracts.
  • Once a client has ended their SAP maintenance contract, they may no longer have access to SAP Service Marketplace. With software archiving, pertinent information such as software upgrades, support packages, enhancement packages, and patch information specific to the client’s unique footprint of SAP applications will still be available for future use.
  • Software archiving gives clients peace of mind knowing that their information will not be lost once they make the switch to third party SAP support. While archived information is not always leveraged, customers like knowing they have it in case they need it.

The Onboarding and Archiving Process 

During the period of transition between when a client cancels their SAP maintenance contract and begins their contract with Spinnaker Support, our SAP engineers will host a kickoff meeting to discuss a software archiving strategy that is based upon our extensive knowledge of the critical data that each client needs to retain.

Developing a Software Archiving Strategy 

Spinnaker Support has designed a project tool to accurately define the archiving process and to ensure that all steps are completed successfully and on time. The strategy session will serve to identify the software to which you are legally entitled, and when it will be downloaded.

The complexity of this type of project combined with the time it takes to successfully capture the software updates often discounted. To make the transition period as smooth as possible, Spinnaker Support’s solutions include archive execution at no additional cost. Our archive execution solutions guarantee that software is packaged securely, easy to navigate, and saves the customer time spent on processing.

 Software Archiving Time Management Expectations 

The duration of the archive process is determinant on the number of SAP products, versions and platforms being archived, but typically takes 3-8 weeks. Spinnaker Support has a dedicated archiving team with skillsets specific to SAPs Service Marketplace processes and procedures, taking the risk and time away from the client.

Reaping the Benefits of Software Archiving with Spinnaker Support 

Spinnaker Support’s software archiving capabilities provide a number of benefits to customers. Consider the following:

  • Data is housed on client hardware, making it accessible for years to come.
  • We offer archiving scope and guidance, which provides access to the software that best matches your future business and technology strategy.
  • Spinnaker Support’s ISO 9001:2015 certified archival process.
  • Our Technology Center of Excellence is available to assist customers utilize the updates, upgrades, or patches that have been archived.
  • We are experienced with best-in-class search tools that locate and identify patches when needed.
  • The archive can also serve as a backup in the case there of any data loss on the client’s system.

Customer Case Study

One of our SAP customers, the world’s largest forest products manufacturer, made the decision to move to third-party support in October of 2015. Upon selection, Spinnaker Support quickly initiated onboarding activities to gain deep knowledge of the company’s people, processes, technology, organization, and practices. With this knowledge, Spinnaker Support developed personalized support to best fit their unique requirements. Spinnaker Support delivered effective archiving services by ensuring all software and product documentation to which the client had access rights was downloaded and packaged in a searchable archive, hosted by the client.

During the onboarding process Spinnaker Support:

  • Created the archiving project plan
  • Assisted in the identification of software and documentation to be archived
  • Coordinated and processed the download of nearly 300,000 notes, more than 8 enhancement packs, 16 kernels, 4 GUI updates, and numerous support packs and other components.
  • Ensured that the archiving work was completed in less than 6 weeks

Spinnaker Support completed a full archive of SAP’s available releases prior to their contract termination on December 31, 2015. With their large SAP footprint, we saved our client months of internal IT staff time and the dollar amount equivalent to roughly 450 man hours. The archival process was entirely provided under our standard support fee and completed at no additional cost to the customer.

In recent months, this customer needed to update their ECC6 applications with a required service pack. They came to Spinnaker Support’s Technology Center of Excellence for assistance in locating and deploying the required updates from their SAP archival directory. They were able to deploy the service pack, complete testing, and promote to production within a few days.


Archiving is a lesser known feature when clients seek out alternatives to vendor support. When considering third-party support, client’s initially focus on the substantial cost savings, hyper-responsive service, full support for their custom code – but they also end up with a full set of software updates archived for future use.

In addition to offering world-class software archiving capabilities, Spinnaker Support helps businesses better leverage advanced SAP features and functionality at a significantly reduced rate. Learn more about our SAP third-party software support solutions, contact us today!


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