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Add Databases to the SAP HANA Database Explorer

This tutorial will explore different database connection types, such as SAP HANA Cockpit Database, SAP HANA Cloud, data lake Relational Engine, and SAP HANA Deployment Infrastructure (HDI), along with the different operations that can be performed on them.
You will learn
  • How to add different database types in the SAP HANA database explorer
  • Additional operations that can be performed on a database
danielvaDan van LeeuwenFebruary 7, 2023
Created by
October 20, 2020


  • An SAP HANA database such as SAP HANA Cloud free tier, trial or the SAP HANA, express edition that includes the SAP HANA database explorer

Database connections in the SAP HANA database explorer represent SAP HANA or data lake Relational Engine databases that you browse and interact with.

SQL consoles are associated with a database connection.

sql console connection
  • Step 1

    Databases defined in the SAP BTP cockpit or the SAP HANA cockpit can be opened in the SAP HANA database explorer.

    1. From SAP HANA Cloud Central, choose Open in SAP HANA Database Explorer.
      Open in the database explorer

      You may be prompted to enter database login credentials at this point. Enter the DBADMIN or SYSTEM user credentials that were set when the database instance was created.

      The credentials can be saved so they do not need to be re-entered if they are entered into the SAP HANA cockpit.

      Notice that when the SAP HANA database explorer opens, the selected database is the one from the selected tile or administered database. Also note that the URL contains a &databaseid=.

      If this URL is saved as a bookmark, each time the page is opened, the matching database will be selected in the catalog browser.

      databaseid parameter

      Hover over the database to see a summary and note that the type is Cockpit Database.

  • Step 2

    Databases can also be added directly to the SAP HANA database explorer. To connect to an SAP HANA Cloud or on-premise database, the host, port, user name, and password must be provided.

    1. In the SAP HANA database explorer, press the + button to add a new database.

      Add a new database
    2. For database type, choose SAP HANA Database.

      Database types

      An SAP HANA, express edition or on-premise database can have two types of databases; system and tenant. This is known as multitenant. System databases are used to manage one or more tenant databases and are only applicable to on-premise systems. For further details, see Server Architecture of Tenant Databases.

    3. Provide the host, port, user name, password, and name to show in display. Below are instructions on how to obtain the host name and port number.

      encrypted connection

      Remember to remove the colon and port number from the host name and add the port to the port field.

      When connecting to an SAP HANA Cloud instance, the database connection must use TLS.

      connect using TLS

      The public root certificate of the certificate authority (CA) that signed the SAP HANA Cloud instance’s server certificate is required. This certificate is likely already available in the system certificate store on the operating system and accessible by the browser, but if not, it can be pasted into the UI. For more information see Secure Communication Between SAP HANA Cloud and JDBC/ODBC Clients.

      For a HANA Cloud database, the host and port values can be copied from SAP HANA Cloud Central.

      copy host and port

      If you are using an SAP HANA, express edition or on-premise database, the port numbers for a system or tenant database can be determined by running the following query against the System database.

      SQL port query
    4. After pressing OK, a new database will appear whose type is SAP HANA Database.

      new database

      Advanced options can be used to specify database properties.

      advanced options

      An example of what can be configured is shown below.


      These values can be seen by opening a SQL console and noticing the schema that the database is using or by executing the following queries.


      For additional details, see Add Instances to the SAP HANA Database Explorer and the SET Statement.

  • Step 3

    A data lake Relational Engine is a column oriented, disk based relational store that can be used to economically store data that is not updated frequently. Additional details can be found at What is SAP HANA Cloud, Data Lake.

    1. A data lake can be added to an already created SAP HANA Cloud database that does not have a data lake already associated with it or it can be added as a standalone database.

      add a data lake

      Ensure that the allowed connections list is set to Allow all IP addresses.

      allowed connections
    2. In the SAP HANA database explorer, choose to add a new connection of type Data Lake Relational Engine.

      add database

      The user name is HDLADMIN.

      Add Data Lake Relational Engine

      The connection details can be copied from the instance tile.

      Copy SQL Endpoint
    3. The catalog browser can be used to view database objects and a SQL Console can be opened to query the database.

      A few queries

      Diagnostic files can also be viewed in the Logs directory.

  • Step 4

    A data lake Files container provides storage for non structured files such as images or PDF documents. It can also store structured files such as CSV, parquet, or ORC files and with the use of SQL on Files, queries can be performed on the data contained in those files. An example of using the data lake Files container is shown as a target for an export operation at Export and Import Data and Schema with SAP HANA Database Explorer.

    1. A connection can be added to a data lake Files container. A data lake Files container is not currently available in the free tier or trial instances of SAP HANA Cloud.

      Add a data lake Files container

      Additional details on how to configure the data lake Files container including the certificates and how to perform queries using SQL on Files can be found at Managing Data Lake Files and Getting to know SAP HANA data lake Files.

    2. Once added, the contents of the file container can be browsed. Files can be added, deleted or viewed.

      data lake Files container

      When files are added, if a path is specified that does not exist, it will create the necessary folders.

      upload a file
  • Step 5

    Databases have additional actions that can be performed on them such as renaming, connecting as a different user, changing the connection of a SQL console, and viewing an overview of the connected database.

    1. To rename a connection, right-click a database and choose Properties.

      database properties

      You may wish to rename the default database display name. Press OK to save the changes and close the window.

      renaming a connection
    2. To connect to the same database but with different credentials, right-click a database and choose Add Database with Different User. This can be useful when you wish to connect to the same SAP HANA database but with a different set of credentials perhaps because you need elevated permissions. The USER1 database user will be created in the next tutorial.

      connecting as a different user
    3. When a SQL console opens, it connects to the currently selected database connection and displays the current schema and connection.

      SQL Console connections

      It is possible to connect, disconnect, or change the connection via the toolbar items highlighted above.

      Subsequent tutorials assume the connected user is DBADMIN or SYSTEM.

    4. To see information about an SAP HANA database, right-click a database and choose Show Overview. This provides a quick overview of the database that you are connected to including the database version.

      database overview
    5. Groups and filters can be used to organize and quickly find databases.

      Using groups

      These groups are separate from the mechanism used in the on-premise SAP HANA Cockpit Manager or the groups seen in Run SQL on Multiple Databases dialog which use groups based on the cloud foundry space name for SAP HANA Cloud instances. For further details, see step 7.

  • Step 6

    An SAP HANA database can be set to have a specified usage, such as development or production. The following SQL statements will display the current usage value and then change it to production.

    ALTER SYSTEM ALTER CONFIGURATION ('global.ini', 'DATABASE') SET ('system_information', 'usage') = 'production' WITH RECONFIGURE;

    After refreshing the page, there will be indicators that the database instance being worked with is a production database as shown below and care should be taken before executing operations that may affect performance or make unintentional changes to the database.

    production label

    For additional details on this parameter, see the system_information usage parameter in SAP HANA Configuration Parameter Reference.

    To undo this setting, execute the SQL below.

    ALTER SYSTEM ALTER CONFIGURATION ('global.ini', 'DATABASE') SET ('system_information', 'usage') = 'custom' WITH RECONFIGURE;
  • Step 7

    SAP HANA cockpit databases can be grouped together. This enables SQL statements to be run against a group of databases.

    run on multiple
    1. With SAP HANA Cloud, all databases created in a space are placed in a group. As seen below, the space name is dev.

      group by space

      SAP BTP Cockpit or SAP HANA Cloud Central contain in their URL, a parameter that indicates the unique name (GUID) for the space.


      The spaces that contain SAP HANA Cloud instances appear when running SQL against multiple databases. Executing commands in the SQL console will be covered in a subsequent tutorial.

      run on multiple

      The space dev is represented by its GUID in the selection dialog below.

      run on multiple databases in HXE
    2. With SAP HANA, express edition or an on-premise install, a tool called SAP HANA Cockpit Manager can be used to register databases and organize them into groups.

      registered resources

      Two user defined groups are shown below.


      These groups appear when running SQL against multiple databases. There are also three predefined groups named DEVELOPMENT, ALL, and PRODUCTION.

      run on multiple

      run on multiple databases in HXE

      The ability to see groups in the SAP HANA database explorer that have been created using the SAP HANA Cockpit Manager requires the SAP HANA database explorer to be opened from the SAP HANA cockpit.

  • Step 8

    An SAP HANA Deployment Infrastructure (HDI) container can be created by using SAP Business Application Studio or the SAP HANA Web IDE. An HDI container can contain database objects such as tables, views, functions, stored procedures, and calculation views. HDI containers support the use case where multiple versions of the same data model are deployed into the same database instance. This might be done by multiple developers working on a project. Using HDI helps ensure a consistent deployment. Objects within an HDI container all share the same schema and are accessed by a technical user. Further details can be found at SAP HANA Deployment Infrastructure in the Cloud.

    The SAP Business Application Studio is the recommended tool for SAP HANA native application development with SAP HANA Cloud HANA databases while the SAP HANA Web IDE is the recommended tool for HANA 2.0 on-premise databases. For additional details see SAP Business Application Studio and SAP Web IDE Full-Stack.

    The following steps demonstrate how to use the SAP Business Application Studio or the SAP HANA Web IDE to create and deploy an HDI container containing a table and then view container in the SAP HANA database explorer.

  • Step 9
    1. Open the SAP BTP cockpit and from the Service Marketplace under the subaccount level (named trial in the screenshot below) find and open the SAP Business Application Studio.

      service marketplace
    2. Create a new SAP HANA Native Application dev space.

      create a dev space
    3. Once the dev space is running, open it.

    4. Set the cloud foundry org and space by pressing F1 or Ctrl + Shift + P to open the command palette. Search for the command CF Set Org and Space.

      set CF org and space

      The endpoint value can be found in the SAP BPT Cockpit.

      api endpoint
    5. From the Welcome tab (can be opened from the command palette if it is not open), choose Start from template.

      start from template
    6. Select SAP HANA Database Project.

      SAP HANA Database Application
    7. Provide the following values and click Finish.

      Setting Value
      Project name: myHANAProj
      Module name: db
      Schema name: mySchema
      SAP HANA Database Version: HANA Cloud
      Bind database Yes
    8. Once the project generation finishes, open the tool palette (F1) and choose SAP HANA: Create SAP HANA Database Artifact. Provide the following values and click Create.

      Setting Value
      Path: /home/user/projects/myHANAProj/db/src
      Version: HANA Cloud
      Artifact Type: Table (hdbtable)
      Name: myTable
    9. Paste the below content into the file.

      COLUMN TABLE myTable
          "ID" INTEGER,
          "VALUE" VARCHAR(50)
    10. Use the SAP HANA Projects Explorer to deploy the table.

      deploy the table
    11. Open the SAP HANA database explorer to view the deployed HDI container and table.

      view the hdi container

      A new HDI container with the table is shown.

      hdi container and table
  • Step 10
    1. Open SAP HANA Web IDE for SAP HANA if using SAP HANA, express edition or an on-premise install.

      open web ide on-premise

      An alternative way to determine the URL for the SAP Web IDE for SAP HANA is to run the below command on the machine where SAP HANA on-premise is installed.

      su hxeadm
      xs apps
      SAP Web IDE URL

      The user name for login is XSA_ADMIN.

      login for XSA
    2. Ensure that the SAP HANA extensions are enabled.

      SAP HANA plugins
    3. Open the development pane.

      Development pane
    4. Create a new HANA database project.

      Right-click Workspace and choose New | Project from Template.

      Select the template SAP HANA Database Application.

      new HANA proj

      Fill in the following values and press Finish.

      Setting Value
      Project Name: myHANAProj
      Space: development
      Namespace: Clear the default value
      SAP HANA Database Version: Choose the appropriate version such as 2.0 SPS 06
    5. After the wizard finishes, create a table by right-clicking on the src folder and choosing New | Database Artifact.

      Specify a file name of test and a file type of .hdbtable.

      Paste the below content into the file and choose File | Save.

      COLUMN TABLE test
          "ID" INTEGER,
          "VALUE" VARCHAR(50)
      test table
    6. Deploy the HDI container. Right-click the db folder and choose Build | Build.

      Build and deploy the HDI container

      The Console window will show the result of the build process.

    7. Once complete, the HDI container can be opened in the SAP HANA database explorer by right-clicking on the db folder and choosing Open HDI Container.

      Alternatively, it can be added via the Add Database dialog.

      Add HDI

      Notice, above, that a user name and password are not requested. The connection will use a technical user, which was generated when the HDI container was created.

      In the database browser and in the SQL console, notice that the schema name is not shown.

      test table

      It is also possible to connect to an HDI container as an admin, which enables the ability to grant additional permissions in the HDI container. For an example of where this might be used, see Grant a Support User Access to an SAP HDI Container. Do not use the Admin connection to perform DDL (such as create, update, or delete) operations.

      connect as admin

      For an example of creating a calculation view inside an HDI container, see the video titled Develop Apps at the end of the blog post Getting Started with SAP HANA Cloud II | Basics

      The mission Get Started with XS Advanced Development provides further examples of using an HDI container.

  • Step 11

    Congratulations! You have added different databases to the SAP HANA database explorer.

    In the next tutorial, additional tables, views, functions, and procedures that will be used in subsequent tutorials in this group will be created directly in the database rather than in an HDI container.

    Which of the following are operations that can be performed on an SAP HANA database explorer connection?

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