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Improve SAP Applications with SAP NetWeaver Application Server

NOTE: this blog posting is republished from Peter Walters’ education platinum journal written in 2009.


Learn how to improve your ABAP applications by using the newest technologies available in SAP NetWeaver Application Server component


By:  Peter Walters, Platinum Education Consultant – SAP America


The SAP NetWeaver Application Server 7.0 offers essential innovation in ABAP programming that will benefit the Customer in critical areas:

  • Increased productivity in delivering custom programs
  • Safety in Database Updates
  • Increased Security in accessing programming parts and data in the Database
  • Increased performance
  • Web enabling custom ABAP applications


In this article, we will focus on the advantages provided by the usage of ABAP Objects in ABAP Business Logic Development. In future articles, we will discuss other news in ABAP Development such as:

  • User Interface Development in ABAPWeb Dynpro ABAP, Interactive Forms by Adobe, and ABAP Web Services (Calling and Exposing);
  • Integrated Development with ABAP WorkbenchNew ABAP Editor, New ABAP Debugger, ABAP Unit, Adobe Document Services, XSLT, Checkpoints/Assertions, and Coverage Analyzer;
  • Enhancement and Switch FrameworkEnhancement Framework with its Enhancement Spots for “New” (Kernel) Business Add Inns, Explicit Enhancement Points, Explicit Enhancement Sections, Implicit Enhancement Points and the Switch Framework.


ABAP Objects Technology in ABAP Programming


There are multiple reasons to use ABAP Objects technology in ABAP programming. For now, ABAP Objects cannot be avoided and must be used by every ABAP Developer:


1.  SAP List Viewer OM (Object Model)


Let us compare two reports.  One report uses procedural ABAP while the other one using the methods provided by SAP in the classes part of SAP List Viewer OM (Object Model) – 175 new classes dedicated to the different tasks in reporting – supposed to replace completely any old technologies, such as ABAP Lists and the ALV Grid reports based on the CL_GUI_ALV_GRID class.  The “old” reports based on the List Screen are already obsolete because they are not compliant with the Accessibility Act 508. Even the reports based on CL_GUI_ALV_GRID are obsolete by the new specialized classes provided by the SAP List Viewer OM (Object Model). The developer does not have to create a screen nor a GUI for the screen, and, most important, the Field Catalog is generated automatically by system code and is based entirely on the layout of your internal table. More than that, the memory is managed much better, based on the need of the list functionality.


Basically, the display of data in the SAP List Viewer format and the default functionality, such as details, sort, filter, aggregation, print, Excel or Lotus Notes format, download, mail, graphics is resolved in 6 (six) statements – two declarative statements and four calls to provided methods.  The developers will focus on the Business Process implementation (the data pulled from the database, from tables, and calculations should be done) instead of dealing with the way the data will be displayed. The productivity in development will increase dramatically!


2. Run Time Type Services


The methods in the classes provided by SAP as part of the RTTS (Run Time Type Services) offer the ABAP Developer sensational dynamics in an ABAP program. The ability to create Type objects at run time, allows the program to adapt fully to the User Input, unknown until run time. Using these techniques, ensure huge reusability of an ABAP program, reducing drastically the programming costs.


3. Class-based Exceptions


“Classic” exception were raised by the code of Function Modules or Methods when there was no reason to continue that code and the previous caller had to be announced about the problem.  The Class-based exceptions are raised from any piece of code in any ABAP program (not just from FM or Methods). In addition, the raised exceptions can be propagated to the initial caller, which is usually the Z… program.   So, the Z… program can react as it wishes not relying on the reaction of another developersMost important, the reusability and one place to maintain the class brings down the maintenance costs for ABAP programs.


4. Safety (perfect Updates and Security)


Using the methods offered by the Persistent Services, any access to the Database can be secured and any update, insert, delete will be perfect – all or nothing – as the Transactional way requires. You will never have an incomplete update on SAP’s or your Z… tables. The proper code is generated by the Persistent Services and the developers should just use it.  By using Persistent Services, the costs incurred by problems raised by the existence of incomplete, or corrupted records disappearssavings for the company are incalculable.  In addition, the safety implied – no unchecked access to the data in the database – provides great news in ABAP programming.


5. Shared Memory Object Area


This is a new memory area of the SAP NetWeaver Application Server shared by all programs running on a SAP NW Application Server, such as a catalog or a shopping basket. The performance of all programs needing that data increases dramatically, because the data is retrieved ONCE from the database, calculations are executed ones, and then any other program will just use it. The speed of these “users” increases up to 100 times, and the performance throughout the entire system will increase.


These are only SOME news in SAP NetWeaver Application Server. What do you need to learn and start applying these new techniques?  Register online today for the course offered by SAP Education – BC401, ABAP Objects or contact the SAP Education Customer Interaction Center (1-888-777-1727).

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