Difference between Infoprovider and Infoobject in SAP BW?

Infoproviders and Info objects are both objects in SAP BW. The difference between Infoprovider and Infoobject can be seen when we define the meaning of both.
Info Providers are used to store the data in SAP BW system. Info Providers are the objects in BW, which are storing data physically or virtually give access to the data. They can be accessed for reporting purposes.
Info provider can be:
– Characteristic info objects, which contains master data
– Data Store Objects – stores transaction data on detailed level.
– Info cubes – stores transaction data on aggregated level. Info cubes are using the well known star schema. They have multiple dimensions.
– Multi providers – this is a virtual provider, which provides view on data from several Infoproviders
For BW powered by HANA and BW on HANA there are new Info providers:
– Advanced Data Store Objects – they are corresponding to the former Infocubes and Data store objects
– Composite providers – corresponding to the mulltiproviders
 Info Objects are corresponding to fields in the BW tables. They are the smallest objects in BW system and are used to build the tables of the other info providers.  As already mentioned the info objects from type characteristic can be also Info provider if they have master data. Examples are material, plant, product etc.
Info Objects can be also without master data and in this case they are not info providers. They are used to build the info providers. They are so called basic building blocks in BW system.
Info providers are made up from Info objects actually.

Info Objects can be classified into the following types:

  • Characteristics (for example, customers)
  • Key figures (for example, revenue)
  • Units (for example, currency, amount unit)
  • Time characteristics (for example, fiscal year)
  • Technical characteristics (for example, request number)
Info Objects can be uniquely identified by their technical name. They contain technical and business information.
SAP delivers Info Objects in BI content. The technical name of this delivered by SAP Info objects starts with 0 like 0material for example.
Info providers can be found in transaction RSA1 >>Infoprovider
Info objects can be found in transaction RSA1 >> Info Objects
See also how to create an Info Object from type key figure in BW on HANA here.


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