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SAP Web Application Server Evolution and Comparison – Part 2

Advantages of upgrading/migrating to SAP Web Application Server 6.40?

  • J2EE 1.3 support
  • Supports ABAP for the ABAP community and Java/J2EE for the J2EE community so applications can get advantages from both technologies.
  • J2EE Cluster Infrastructure – Completely revamped server and cluster architecture
  • Web Service Framework – for Java  and Web Service Tools
  • NetWeaver Developer infrastructure (NWDI) – Industry-strength Development Infrastructure which provides software logistics covering the whole life cycle and support for enhancements of SAP’s applications at customers and partners. NWDI has a unique combination of features
    • Local IDE with access to central test environments
    • Repository for distributed versioning of software components
    • Software structuring by component-based development
    • Automated build service
    • Providing up to date libraries immediately
    • Automated configurable deployment
  • Major milestone in terms of reliability – SAP Web AS Java 6.40 adopts the concept of an instance as an administrative unit that groups together components of an SAP system (known from the SAP R/3 systems). Well Integrated into the Java Startup and Control Framework, it provides reliable life-cycle management of the processes running within a Java instance.
    • Use a central DB as configuration and application store —> stability

      Any deployment to the server works in a transactional mode so that applications, upgrades, or services are either deployed completely or not at all. Breaking the deployment process for whatever reason never will result in bad installations that make the server unusable.

    • Use the Enqueue Server as reliable lock handler —> stability
    • Use the Message Server as message hub —> scalability
    • Use SDM (Software Delivery Manager) to keep track of deployed components —> supportability
  • NetWeaver Developer Studio – SAP Web AS lets you choose the best development option for custom development: ABAP, Business Server Pages, JSPs, J2EE and Web Dynpro.
    • Offer an individual and personalized access to the various development tools through Eclipse perspectives (customized tool sets)
    • Seamless integration of all development tools into SAP’s development infrastructure (design time repository, change management, software logistics)
  • Web Dynpro – Improve User Experience through a “High Fidelity Web UI”
  • Installation Options – Common installation and administration
    • ABAP & J2EE – Fast Java-ABAP connectivity, common installation, configuration and monitoring. Perfectly fits for ABAP-J2EE projects
    • J2EE – One single infrastructure for everything. Perfectly fits for all kinds of J2EE applications
    • Java Developer Workplace – Allows central and local development. Perfectly fits for Java development in small and big teams 
  • Providing Web services based on Open Standards, Integrate Web Services – The SAP Web Application Server is the foundation of all solutions. It provides a scalable, reliable Web application infrastructure that delivers high-performance Web services, ensures an e-business solution is always online, and supports Web access via a Web browsers, a range of mobile devices, and Web service-enabled client programs.
  • SAP Web AS supplements ITS (it contains most of ITS capabilities)
    • Newly developed solutions are built on SAP Web AS
    • Older applications will be moved to Web AS from ITS overtime, however

Converging to the same SAP WAS version inside your organization

There are a number of reasons for big companies having many SAP systems with different SAP Web Application Servers to converge to the same version. Big organizations usually have two scenarios:

  1. Different SAP systems installed in one data center – zoo of different technologies exist at the same data center: Systems with SAP Web Application Server 6.20, Systems with SAP Web Application Server 6.40.
  2. Different SAP systems installed in various data centers.(around the world)

What are the pros and cons for converging to the same version of Web Application Server?


  • Skills – People will be familiar with one SAP Web Application Server version only, Administration and Maintenance will be much more professional, effective and easier.
  • System Landscape – different application can share the same Web Application Server for their needs, System Landscape will be less complicated.
  • Low cost of ownership – development cost, skills , SAP Web AS is available free of charge when part of a mySAP Business Suite solution, e.g. mySAP CRM orR/3 Enterprise
  • Development – Seamless integration of all development tools into SAP’s development infrastructure, developers can Use either NetWeaver Developer Studio or ABAP workbench for different development tasks. NWDI will be used for version control and builds. Developers from different teams and countries can work on the same project and share the same sources.
  • Transport mechanism – DEV -> QA -> Production transport mechanism is well defined


  • Training required – Some people will have to get familiar with new technology , new development tools and processes so education is needed.
  • Migration process – Migration is a complicated process and should be well defined. Different version compatibilities should be checked (with special focus on Unicode versions).


  • Web Services

    Exposing Functions as Web Services

    • Within SAP Web Application Server, the inside-out approach is used to develop the functions that can be made available as Web services. After implementing the Web services, a Web services interface, which is visible to the Web services consumer, has to be created. This interface provides the abstraction from the specific implementation. Based on this interface, the Web service is configured. The next step makes the Web service accessible during runtime. For every Web service, SAP Web Application Server provides a standardized description based on WSDL that can be made available in a UDDI registry or directly by the server.
    • Every self-contained, modularized functionality – provided by SAP as part of a solution or developed by the customer or partner – can be made available as a Web service. Therefore, they can be used across the Internet over standard protocols, and they can easily be integrated into any development framework. This includes BAPIs, ABAP Remote Function Modules, IDocs, and Enterprise Java Beans. The full range of SAP’s business functionality can be exposed as Web services very easily, based on the native integration of Internet technology and support for theWeb services paradigm.

    Fully Integrated Development, Deployment, and Configuration Process

    • Developing and exposing Web services needs to be a streamlined process. The SAP development environment includes all the necessary tools to develop, configure, and deploy Web services. The Web services tools in SAP’s well-known, stable, and efficient development environment ensure that Web services can be implemented with the same mechanisms and tools as other SAP applications. The solution uses wizards to configure and deploy Web services. It completely supports UDDI client and server functions (like browsing and searching for Web services) to address the requirements to publish and find Web services, drawing on our experience as a UDDI Business Registry node operator (

    Investment Protection

    • Although the Web community currently has a common understanding of the Web services standards, new standards will appear, and others will evolve to meet new requirements. SAP’s Web services approach is designed to be easily extensible based on a SOAP Web services framework. With this framework, SAP can efficiently integrate new or evolving standards, protocols, and Web services. For example, there may be a need to use binary protocols instead of HTTP for communication, or new security features may need to be implemented. SAP, its partners, or its customers can then realize these new features within the framework so that all Web services can benefit from the new functionality. Seamless integration into the Web services paradigm assures that investments are protected and that rapidly changing areas can be easily kept up-to-date.
    • The use of Web services is not limited to a specific communication technology stack. You can choose to optimize communication using other transport protocols and formats, including Remote Function Calls (RFC), in highly optimized LAN-based synchronous or asynchronous communication behind the firewall. That means Web services can integrate enterprise applications behind the firewall as well as drive collaborative scenarios that cross company boundaries. SAP Web Application Server provides a convenient, easy-to-use environment to publish, discover, and access Web services across a network using open standards to act both as a server for Web services and as a Web services client.

    Consuming Web Services

    • SAP Web Application Server also allows the integration of Web services no matter where they reside or how they are implemented. That means business processes can span different systems within a company and between companies. Using standardized WSDL descriptions, it is very easy to develop a Web service client. Typically these WSDL files are discovered via UDDI registries. Using the WSDL file as input, a Web services client proxy is generated. The proxy implementation automatically handles technical aspects like creating valid SOAP messages. That mean you don’t need to reinvent the wheel over and over again to create high-quality Web service clients. And it allows application developers to focus on business functionality. WSDL files can be provided directly by the Web service provider, as well.
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