How to run SAP transaction ST03/ST03N and navigate through SAP workload monitor screens

ST03/ST03N is a SAP transaction for workload monitor used to review SAP workload distribution both from time vertically and servers horizontally. After you review my post – SAP workload monitor overview, you get some idea on what this SAP tool is up for, now you wonder how to run SAP st03n and navigate through frequent accessed ST03N screen. This is the focus of this post:

  1. How to start SAP workload monitor ST03N.
  2. How to navigate through SAP ST03N workload monitor.

How to understand ST03N data and what we can use ST03/ST03N for in SAP system/program/job performance analysis would be covered in subsequent posting.

1. How to start SAP workload monitor ST03N

To start SAP workload monitor, you can either use menu path or run SAP transaction ST03/ST03N directly. The initial screen of workload monitor is similar to what showed in Figure 1 normally.

Figure 1 ST03 Initial screen – Navigation panel and Overview of instances

2. How to navigate through SAP ST03N workload monitor

You can navigate through SAP ST03N screens easily via built-in navigation planel showed in above Figure 1. On ST03N initial screen, you can access following functions:

  1. Workload – So you can analyze SAP historical workload for each uniqe combination of period, application-server or system, workload under this portion are aggregated,
  2. Detailed Analysis – So you can analyze SAP “current” workload data which can be drilled down to individual statistical record,
  3. Load history and Distribution – So you can compare and analyze performance overall several periods in one screen and
  4. Collector and performance database – this allows you to define retention period for different performance data collected. It also allow you to control what performance statistical data should be make available for SAP work load – business transaction analysis tool STAD.

Please refer to figure 2 for a brief description on navigation options. I would cover more details in following sections.

Figure 2 ST03N workload navigation option overview

Only entries starting with in ST03N represents an executable function. You need to click “” or “” icon to see ” entry” in navigation panel. To start a ST03N function via ST03N navigation panel, you need to double click on a entry like in Figure 2.

2.1 SAP Workload Review

ST03N organizes workload data into different views/profiles to facilitate performance analysis. Data in each workload view is organized into different tabs based on performance focus.

A workload view can be available for one period or one server/instance ,but not available in another period or server when underlying data is not available. Data is not available due to two reasons: data is deleted and data has not been collected. You can make proper setting via ST03N or system parameter maintenance transaction RZ11 to control data collection and retention. For example, you do not see view in the lower portion of navigation panel showed in Figure 3. I would talk more in later portion of this post.

2.1.1 SAP workload overview screen

Data from SAP workload overview screen allows you to analyze SAP performance at system/server and task type level.

Now assuming that I need to review workload situation at system level (TOTAL) for a particular day, so I click the “Total” entry first, then “Day” entry, i double clicked the date –here June 17 2013, Screen similar to Figure 3 would show up.

Figure 3 ST03N Workload Overview screen

Please note the main display has 3 components:

  • Part 1 is navigation panel. Workload navigation panel has two portions – the upper portion is the ST03N transaction original navigation panel, the lower portion shows a list of available analysis views for SAP workload analysis.
  • Part 2 is workload header information – showing period (a customer period, a day, a week or a month) where workload is related, instance (a specific instance or total) and task type (a specific task type or all). Please double check with 1st records and last records and time period field to ensure that you got all workload from the period you selected.
  • Part 3 is workload details.

Workload over view screen is the initial view presented by ST03N for load analysis. The workload overview shows times statistics consolidated according to SAP task types. In a SAP ECC system, Dialog, Background, RFC, ALE and Updating task performance are most critical to business function. Workload overview screen provides a performance overview on task type level.

 

There are several tabs in Workload overview to help you to quickly locate the data you might need. The user tab shows number of accumulated users from the system/instance for the selected period.

In the left bottom corner of Figure 3 is a list of analysis views available for the workload in the selected period and server scope. You can navigate to any view by moving your cursor and double clicking the view like “standard” under “Transaction Profile”.

 

2.1.2 ST03N Transaction profile

Data from transaction profile allows you to do application performance analysis.

There are two versions of transaction profile – one is “Standard”, the other is “EarlyWatch”. Standard profile has more navigation feature and provides workload breakdown based on SAP task types.

Double click “Standard” under “transaction Profile”, You would get screen similar to figure 4

Figure 4 SAP workload – standard transaction profile

In figure 4, “All data” tab is organized into several child tabs – Times, Database, Parts of response time, GUI times with default tab “Times” displayed. GUI Times tab is only applicable to Dialog type task.

EarlyWatch transaction profile is similar to “standard” transaction profile. The difference between them is that EarlyWatch consolidates workload displayed in Figure 4 based on the 1st column – “Report or Transaction name”. This helps if you want to know top load programs in the system.

Table 1 – Workload view navigation buttons

Your goal Button should be clicked Comment
Filter display by task type You select corresponding “task type” from the pull-down menu which has “Dialog”, “BACKGROUND”, “RFC” and etc. You can select “Dialog” task type so only online executed transactions are displayed.
Aggregate workload This allows you to aggregate workload on one of SAP predefined levels: Application such as CO, LE, MM, FI and etc, Subapplication like MM-IM, MM-PUR etc , package and transaction. Default level is transaction.
Check individual statistical records To use this, you need to place cursor on selected row first. This works only with “current data” while STAD works. Current data is normally referring to data related to transaction executed in recent 48 hours.
Check Column full name Long-short name to give you more meaning of the column or save the column width.
Filter display by column Filter display based on column like Disk reads, Program name etc. You can click a column first or you can select columns for sorting from available fields after you click the filter button.
Sort display Sort in Ascending or Descending in expected column. Click the column name first before the sort button is clicked.
Search on the screen You can search the display based on specific value from any column.
Summarize numeric column You need to select the numeric column like “# steps”, then click this button
Export the display to a local file Save displayed workload data to local file.
Chang display You can control what column should be displayed and their position and save it for future use.

 

The same button has the same usage regardless of ST03N analyst views you are working with although some buttons are only applicable to specific views like “single records” button which is not available in workload default view – workload overview.

2.1.2 ST03N time profile

Data from ST03N time profile view allows you to analyze performance/load difference between different hours.

Double click “Time Profile” entry in navigation panel (see Figure 3), you would see screen similar to figure 5.

Figure 5 ST03N SAP workload time profile

Time profile separates workload from a period ( a day, a week or a month) into hourly fashion. So you can know the busiest hours in terms of workload.

If your display is not in hourly fashion, you might need to refer to following ossnote :

  • 17750 workload: time profile also for night hours and
  • 910897 ST03N: Configuration of time profile.

2.1.3 ST03N RFC Profiles – RFC Server profile

Data from ST03n RFC profiles allows you to analyze RFC performance.

You can use ST03N to review RFC workload. RFC workload is further separated into RFC client profile, RFC server profile, RFC Client Destination and RFC Server Destination profile. This makes it easier for you to do specific workload analysis.

Figure 6 ST03N – RFC Server profile

RFC Server Destination profile

Figure 7 ST03N – Destination profile

2.1.4 SAP ST03N Response Time Distribution view

Data from this view can allow you to see transaction step distribution based on duration.

Double click “Response Time Distribution” entry in workload navigation panel, you would get screen like Figure -8.

Figure 8 ST03N Response Time Distribution

Number of dialog steps under 1 second is often used to measure a system performance based on % of dialog response time under 1 seconds.

2.1.5 SAP ST03N – other workload analysis views

You can navigate to other workload analysis views like Memory Use Statistics, Ranking lists, User and Settlement Stat etc in the same fashion. You might need to review those views based on specific situation – for example, if you would like to tune memory usage and need to identify top memory consumer, ST03N Workload – Memory Use Statistics view is a good place to start.

2.2 Detailed Analysis

Here, you can analyze “current” workload which might not show up in workload analysis we have covered in previous section of this post, you can access individual SAP statistical record via button showed in figure 4.

2.2.1 Business Transaction Analysis

Click this entry, it would start SAP STAD transaction giving you access to recent individual performance statistical records. You can refer to my post on how to run SAP STAD transaction.

2.2.2 Last Minute’s load

To see last minute’s workload, you need to click a server or total( whole system) , input the data and then hit the execution or continue key. Please refer to Figure 6 with input data.

“Time profile granularity” might be helpful for you to organize workload data into “good” period and “bad” period for easy comparison in performance analysis.

Figure 9 ST03N last minute’s Load initial screen

After you enter your data and hit execution, you would get all normal views we covered in “workload” section of this posts and you can access those workload views in the same way which is covered in workload section of this post.

When I hit “OK” or continue button in figure 6, I got a “workload” overview screen normally. However I presented ” time profile” view of workload in Figure 7 as an example.

Figure 10 ST03N last minute’s load – time profile

Each time you run SAP ST03N to review workload for selected server/instance, the default view would be workload overview. However if you would like to review workload in another server etc., the default view is the last analysis view you review with previous workload analysis.

2.3 Workload History and Distribution

In this section, three analysis options are available

  • Load history,
  • Instance Comparison and
  • Users per Instance.

You use navigation panel to access those analysis option by clicking corresponding leaf entry.

2.3.1 ST03N Load History

Data from load history view allows you to analyze performance trend of a SAP system/application/task types.

You can review workload history of single instance/server or workload history of whole system. If you double click on “total” entry, you would get workload history screen similar to Figure 8.

Figure 11 ST03N workload history at system level

Click button “Task type” in figure 11, you can review workload for the expected workload type. Click Week and Month button in Figure 11, Number of steps would be summarized and response time would be averaged in expected time interval.

2.3.2 Instance Comparison

Data from instance comparison allows you to analyze performance among different instances.

Workload data in different application server can be compared in day, week and month interval. Please refer to figure 12 for navigation path.

Figure 12 ST03N Instance comparison

 

2.3.3 Users per Instance

Double click “User per Instance ” under path “ST03N -> Load History and Distribution”, you would see screen similar to Figure 13.

Figure 13 ST03N Users per instance

2.4 Collector and performance DB

Here, SAP ST03N allows you to define retention period for data used in SAP ST03N. It also allows you to have control over some online parameters which control statistical sub-record generation or collections temporarily. Those online parameter changes could be lost or replaced by the value from sever/instance profile. Please refer to Figure 14 for function details

2.4.1 Define data and workload review retention period

Double click on “Reorganization” under path “SAP ST03N -> Collector and Performance DB -> Performance Database ->Monitoring Database”, You would see screen similar to

Figure 15 Performance database retention period

You can overwrite the those number based on your specific need.

Double click on “Control” under path “ST03N -> Collector and Performance DB -> Performance Database -> Workload Collector Database -> Reorganization”, You would see screen similar to

Figure 16 – SAP ST03N workload collector views retention period

Here you can define retention period for Daily/Weekly/Monthly Aggregates Retention Period workload data for specific view. In figure 16, daily aggregates data would be kept for 14 days only – after they would be deleted automatically.

2.4.2 Statistics Records – Online parameters

ST03N allows you to change online parameters to influence statistics data generation on the fly – you navigate to the screen, overwrite the data and save the changes. Your changes come into effect immediately upon saving. It can be lost immediately after the system is reboot/restarted as well.

Double Click “Dialog Step Statistics” under path “ST03N-> Collector and Performance DB -> Statistics Records & File->Online Parameters”, you would see following screen

Figure 17 ST03N online parameters of Statistics

Please note those changes are applied to all task types in the server where it is effected not just applicable to online transactions. If you would like to see what are top 3 tables which a transaction step spends its’ time on, you can overwrite value to “3” under parameter “STAT/TABREC” column in figure 17. If you are only interested in top 3 table for a specific business transaction like order creation transaction “VA01”, you can enter “VA01” under “stat/tcode1” column, otherwise the setting would be effect for all transactions. There are general SAP guidelines/default values for those parameters. Remember it is a load to system to generate and collect statistics, set it up when there is a real need. A blank or “Zero” means that corresponding statistics are not collected.

3 Further clarification

I have not navigated to all screens/features under SAP transaction ST03N to keep the post short. But Most of frequent accessed ST03N views and features has been displayed here base on my experience so far. Using navigation panel of ST03N, you should be able to navigate to other screens you are interested. My subsequent posts would talk on what SAP ST03N can be used for performance analysis and how to understand the ST03N data.

 

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