Customer Data and System Data
A client is defined as a self-contained commercial, organizational, and technical unit within an SAP System. This means that all business data within a client is protected from other clients. Each client has its own customer data, which can be considered as the exclusive property of this client.
However, the SAP System offers a system solution that is implemented for all clients in a central repository and cross-client tables (central data source).
As far as data administration is concerned, a multiple client option means that the data required for operating the system is well-defined and assigned either to central data or customer data. The following basic guidelines apply:
SAP data models map customer data to client-specific tables, and central data to cross-client (or client-independent) tables. The cross-client data includes the Repository itself, but also a set of cross-client control data, which is described in more detail later in the document.
The client is included in the data model as a mapping of the Customer entity, in addition to the business application solution. This means that the client does not contribute to the modeling of the application solution. Instead, it makes sure that all data created during business processes is assigned exclusively to its owners (clients).
Client-specific customer data includes all application tables (master data and transaction data), as well as a large number of Customizing settings.
These are tables that hold business data such as master data or transaction data. This data can be created, changed, or deleted at any time by regular business processes. Application tables have the attribute Delivery Class and attribute value A in the ABAP Dictionary.
Customizing tables (business-relevant)
These tables hold data that is influenced by business processes, such as
In addition to the client-specific Customizing tables, there is also a range of cross-client Customizing tables. Because Customizing objects are numerous and varied we will categorize and explain them in more detail, including their relationships with clients, in the following section.
There are often strong mutual dependencies between Customizing tables. For this reason, tables are not maintained individually, but as Customizing objects. The formal relationships integrated into a Customizing object makes sure that it remains consistent in its table group when you edit its entries. In the following we speak about Customizing objects when we mean the representation of Customizing tables on the user interface, and about Customizing tables when we mean their concrete form on the database.
A Customizing object can contain both client-specific tables and cross-client tables. We speak of client-specific objects if all tables maintained through this object are client-specific. Likewise, if at least one cross-client table maintained through the object can be changed, then the object itself is cross-client. Remember that an object is client-specific if it contains one or more cross-client tables whose values can only be displayed or read, and not changed.