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SAP has a product called SAP Enterprise Portal. If someone asks to you that “Do you have SAP Portal Experience?”. What are you going to respond? There are several options for developing portal content. Aren’t there? I received latest SAP Community Flash: SAP Latest News and Events (03/07/2005) e-mail, and I found a good document there: Selecting an Enterprise Portal Content Developer Environment. It’s written by Ajay Bhardwaj.

Implementation of SAP Enterprise Portal leads to the requirement of development of Portal Contents to make real use of Portal. There are various options available for developing contents for Portal but selecting the right one determines the success of the project.  The options available for the SAP EP are:

  • Java iView Development using PDK (Java)
  • .Net iView Development using PDK (.Net will be available soon)
  • SAP WebDynPro Technology
  • SAP BSP technology
  • SAP ITS
  • J2EE/.Net Web Application (Developing a web application separately and linking to Portal)

So what’s said is that there are 6 options to develop portal content! But which one do I have to choose? There is a rating calculation matrix:

Parameter\Dev Platform % JavaiView .Net Dev Web Dynpro BSP SAP ITS J2EE
Availability of development tools 100% 1 1 1 5 3 1
Number of custom web interfaces 100% 1 1 3 5 3 1
Customer’s resource base or plan for maintenance 100% 1 1 3 5 3 1
Connectors availability of DS System 100% 3 2 5 5 5 2
Support for other portal features 0% 5 2 4 0 0 1
Deployment environment 100% 5 4 5 5 1 1
Development efforts 100% 4 2 5 4 2 1
Supportability for future User interface 20% 1 1 5 1 1 1
Rapid Development 10% 3 2 5 4 1 1
Flexibility in using User Interface controls 50% 5 5 2 5 4 5
SAP restriction/suggestions 100% 5 3 5 5 0 0
Supportability for development standards and deployment platform 100% 5 4 5 5 1 2
Total Points 28 20.9 34.5 42.1 20.3 11.8

What did you get from this matrix? I think it says: Use BSP or WebDynpro. If you are good at Java you can use JavaiView, but never tend to use J2EE. SAP ITS seems an alternative but don’t use SAP ITS. Because SAP ITS is dead; isn’t it?

Development of UI using certain technology is not suggested by SAP due to maintenance and support issue/technical issues etc. e.g. web development using ITS has been replaced by BSP technology.

Notice the “SAP restriction/suggestions” row. What SAP suggests is WebDynpro, BSP, JavaiView or you can think .Net Dev as an alternative. But never use SAP ITS or J2EE.

Several weeks ago, I was told by a SAP customer that they are going to implement SAP Portal and they are looking a SAP Consultant who has a experience in SAP Portal, especially in SAP ITS. It means that they will use SAP ITS for developing portal content. SAP ITS is old fashion, JavaiView, WebDynpro, BSP are new fashions. How can people use new fashions without knowing them? When someone wants to implement a new project, firstly s/he tends to use old fashions, because s/he knows that, s/he has experience in that. So what will be going on in this SAP Enterprise Portal implementation project?

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