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This is Part 2 of the blog series dedicated to the SAP NetWeaver Application Server, Java EE 5 Edition (click SAP NetWeaver Application Server, Java EE 5 Edition – Delivering on a Roadmap Series to view the first part).

To be in tune with the global trend in the SAP NetWeaver Application Server, Java ™ EE 5 Edition, the SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio comes based on the latest and hottest platforms for Java and Java EE 5 development. Namely, these are:

  • Eclipse 3.2 based environment, including the Eclipse 3.2 plug-in architecture and Java development tools
  • WTP 1.5 based tools for Java EE development, enhanced with Java EE 5 support features.

Eclipse 3.2 inherited features

Eclipse is the world’s most popular environment for Java development and at the same time the most popular “all-purpose” platform for hosting practically any client applications. Eclipse is being developed by an open-source community called Eclipse Consortium, patronized by IBM. Traditionally, Eclipse platform implies features like:

  • stability
  • platform independence
  • good performance
  • nice look-and-feel
  • useful Java tools
  • etc.

Eclipse 3.2, however, provides more than that. Eclipse 3.2 contains a lot of improvements in the set of Java development tools, overcomes many of the problems that existed in previous releases, and makes an even better universal application platform.

Many of the improvements in Eclipse 3.2 come from the adoption of a standard for application platforms called OSGi. Currently, the heart of the Eclipse plug-in platform is an OSGi framework called Equinox. The adoption of OSGi has brought the following advantages to Eclipse:

  • even faster performance
  • easier update of components
  • improved internal communication
  • improved scalability

You can find more information about OSGi at http://www.osgi.org.

You can find more information about the Equinox project at http://www.eclipse.org/equinox.

WTP 1.5 features

The Web Tools Platform project is an open-source initiative of eclipse.org. It is supported by most of the major players on the Java EE market.

The idea of the WTP project is to provide a rich set of tools for Web and Java EE application development in the Eclipse environment.

The stated mission of WTP is to provide quality, vendor-independent, open-source, standards-based tools that can be adopted by commercial companies and turned into innovative and efficient commercial products. That’s exactly what we at SAP intend to create by gradually enhancing our WTP-based Java EE tools.

WTP has a broad scope. It covers numerous specifications and standards, including all parts of the Java EE specification and related (such as HTML, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), JavaScript, XML, Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP), Web Services Description Language (WSDL), Universal Description Discovery and Integration (UDDI), and so on).

The WTP project is still in an early phase. The only officially released versions to this moment are WTP 1.0 and 1.5.

You can find more information about WTP at http://www.eclipse.org/webtools.

SAP Add-ons

The SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio enhances the Eclipse and WTP tools with the following features:

  • Java EE 5 support

    WTP 1.5 provides only J2EE 1.4 compliancy. The SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio provides project types and wizards for generating Java EE 5 components – Enterprise JavaBeans 3.0, Servlet 2.0, and so on. The development process is also supported with code assistance options, automatic code generation, validation and refactoring. The development process of Java EE 5 applications is modular: you develop the application components in separate projects, and then combine them in different ways into complete applications as necessary.

  • Administration tools for the application server

    This version of the SAP NetWeaver Application server provides basic administration capabilities a developer will need for developing, deploying and monitoring the performance of Java EE applications.

    Namely, the administration capabilities are provided by the following views:

    • SAP MMC view

      The functionality of the standalone SAP MMC, the former SAP administration tool, is now available in the SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio from the new SAP MMC view. The idea is the Developer Studio gradually to become the singe tool for developing applications, deploying them on the server and administrating the server itself.

      In this early preview edition, the SAP MMC view still provides only limited functionality. In the next major production version of the SAP NetWeaver Application Server, it should cover the full functionality of the standalone application.

    • Cluster Overview

      This view also provides certain information about the state of the Java cluster, as well as basic administration operations (start/stop/restart of nodes, and enabling debug). This view is kept for historic reasons and will be removed in the next major release of the SAP NetWeaver Application Server.

  • Deployment/undeployment of Java EE applications developed outside the Developer Studio

    There are dedicated views that allow you to deploy or undeploy applications developed with third-party tools: the Deploy and Undeploy views.

  • Support for SAP-proprietary deployment descriptors

    The Developer Studio automatically creates EJB, Web or application related proprietary deployment descriptors such as web-j2ee-engine.xml, ejb-j2ee-engine.xml, application-j2ee-engine.xml and appclient-j2ee-engine.xml. You can edit them using the XML Editor, and the Developer Studio validates the content according to the corresponding XML schema.

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Conclusion

  • The SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio counts on robust and fast-developing platforms
  • The SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio aligns SAP with the Java and Java EE communities
  • The SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio provides support for the latest Java EE specification
  • The SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio aims at becoming the single tool a developer will need for working with SAP NetWeaver Application Server

In the next part of the series, you will learn about the new features of the application server’s administration tools.

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