Terminology of the Composite Designer
The Composite Designer has a close integration with the SAP NetWeaver Developer Infrastructure (NWDI) and partly with the System Landscape Directory (SLD). In the above two areas the term product is widely used but it implies different meaning there. This close integration impacts the used terminology and in the Composite Designer we also use the term product, but we use it in the meaning of a composite application.
The term composite application (or composite) is a general term that expresses a possibility to define an application built by combining multiple existing functions or modules into a new application. So we use the term “composite application” when we talk about the architecture principles and the layer structuring of these multiple existing functions and modules.
When using the term “product” we focus on the lifecycle management point. For example, you see the physical grouping of the development components (DCs) and software components (SCs) that build your composite application. Of course, while designing your composite application, you have to comply with the SAP component model.Therefore, you can accept the two terms (product and composite application) as synonyms when used in the context of the Composite Designer.
Product Concept and its realization in the Composite Designer with Product Description Software Components.
As we mentioned, the term product extends its usage (even outside the known SLD point of view) and plays a central role when using the Composite Designer. Actually, in the Composite Designer user interface, you create (or import) namely “products”. The product actually consists of one or several SCs, which contain the actual DCs (code of the product), plus the so called “Product Description (SC)”. This Product Description SC contains no code but just metadata and allows the Composite Designer to identify which of the available SCs are parts of which product. Therefore, you need such an SC to be able to display your product in the Composite Designer overview.
Here is a picture that illustrates the Product concept in the Composite Designer.
To state it in a simple way, the product is used as a major development unit in the Composite Designer. This allows you to directly execute actions such as build, deploy, import, export of a certain product as a whole unit. This reduces the need of operating with certain SCs or archive files one by one. It is also possible to work with SCs in the Composite Designer if the development requires it.
The picture bellow illustrates the product “test” and the context menu general options for it.
Additionally, the following picture illustrates the “Composite Explorer”, which shows the product “test” with its DCs and the corresponding layers they belong to.
For more information, see Concepts of the Composite Designer.