The Software Update Manager (SUM) can be used for several scenarios or use cases. Use the carousel below to get an overview. Each scenario is described in detail in the respective section down below.
SUM is now offered in two versions. See section below for respective SUM scenarios, and this blog for details: SUM in the family way
The Software Update Manager (SUM) is the tool for system maintenance:
You may check the following blog on SUM in the SAP Community, it provides an introduction and lists several links to detailed blogs as well: https://blogs.sap.com/2012/11/07/software-update-manager-sum-introducing-the-tool-for-software-maintenance/
A database migration transfers the SAP system from one database type to another. The Software Update Manager offers the Database Migration Option (DMO), which is the combination of the SAP software update with the database migration.
DMO was initially a procedure to migrate to only SAP HANA database. At this time, only the combination of upgrade and migration was possible, since typically the source system was not yet on a software level that is supported by SAP HANA database. Meanwhile, DMO allows to migrate to other database types than SAP HANA database (see respective SAP note for details and restrictions). And DMO can be used for a pure migration, without changing the SAP software level: "DMO without System Change". In addition, it is possible to change not only the database (host), but also the Application Server: "DMO with System Move".
The technical Unicode Conversion can be part of the DMO procedure, if the target software level is lower than SAP BASIS 7.50.
You may check the following blog on DMO in the SAP Community, it provides an introduction and lists several links to detailed blogs as well: https://blogs.sap.com/2013/11/29/database-migration-option-dmo-of-sum-introduction/
You may check the PDF presentation DMO introduction as well.
For DMO, dedicated guides are available:
The System Conversion is the transition of an SAP ERP system into an SAP S/4HANA system. The Software Update Manager executes the technical conversion of that procedure.
The relevant SAP S/4HANA releases are nowadays all based on SAP BASIS 7.50 or higher, so SUM 2.0 will be the SUM version to use for a System Conversion.
For the conversion process, a dedicated SUM conversion guide is available:
The Customer Transport Integration (CTI) allows customers to apply customer releases and customer transports either along with the SAP software shipment, or even standalone. Applying customer transports using SUM significantly reduces the overall business runtime.
Based on a white list approach objects will be imported during uptime. Examples for enabled transport objects are dictionary objects like DOMA, DOMD, DTEL, XINX, INDX, and repository objects like METH, CLAS, REPS, PROG, VARI. Of course also SGEN for customer objects is started in the shadow system.
Customer Transport Integration is described in the standard SUM guide in chapters "Integration of Customer Transports", and "Integrating Customer Tranpsorts into the Update Procedure". For addtional information, see also SAP Note 1759080 - Conditions for SUM including customer transport requests.
The Correction of Installed Software Information allows customers to correct and update the information about the installed software instances in SAP systems using the Software Update Manager. A specific stack configuration file has to be generated using the Maintenance Planner.
You start SUM and provide this specific stack configuration file. SUM will then apply the required adaptations in the system.