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Function documentation Vendors: Determining the Relevant Article Master Records Locate the document in its SAP Library structure


The initial selection of the article master records concerned depends on whether the vendor is an external vendor or a distribution center.

The connection between vendor and article is created via the purchasing info record. Starting from the vendor and the purchasing organization which characterize the changed data retention level, the system determines all purchasing info records that are not flagged for deletion and for which articles can still be delivered.

The vendor must be the only supplier of these goods, or must be the regular vendor.

As there may not be purchasing info records for the distribution center and the site to which goods are supplied, the system cannot use the purchasing records as for an external vendor. Instead, the system considers all articles that the distribution center itself can process (those for which article master records exist for the distribution center).

The following checks are made for all the article master records found in the initial selection:

Determining the Data Retention Level for the Article Master Record

When the system processes an article master record it determines whether the field affected by the change occurs in the article master record only, or in the purchasing info record (if one exists, which is not necessarily the case for a distribution center) as well. If the latter is the case, the article master and purchasing info record are seen as a single unit. This means that the value in the field in the article master record only changes if the value in the field in the purchasing info record changes. Note that if the purchasing info record is site-independent only, this may be retained at a different data retention level to the actual article master record.


The vendor master contains the following data retention levels:

Purchasing organization

Vendor sub-range



Data retention level













An article master record for site BED1 that contains an article that is assigned to sub-range 111111 is retained at level DR1.

If the purchasing info record for this article master record is site-independent only, then this is retained at level DR2.

This means that changes at level DR2 are of interest for the fields in the article master record which also exist in the purchasing info record, while changes at level DR1 are of interest for the other fields.

You make a change at one of the data retention levels. This can be a deletion - not just at the level characterized by the purchasing organization - or an addition in the level. The system compares the current value in the article master with the value in the data retention level, at which the article master record would have been retained if you had not made the change. Only if these two values are identical does the system forward to the article master record the value from the data retention level at which it is now retained. If this relates to changes to fields which also exist in the purchasing info records, the changes are only forwarded if they have also been made in the purchasing info record. This means that manual changes to the article master are not overwritten automatically.

Additional Information

Articles: Vendor-Related Reference Data



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