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One of the standout features of SAP
NetWeaver is its support for open tech-
nology and user interfaces that are
Web Dynpro, is a first-class approach
to building application content designed
to run in SAP NetWeaver Portal.
And because Web Dynpro is language-
independent by design, it\u2019s not just for
Java developers. Those application devel-
opers who are fluent in ABAP and have
mastered Web enablement through BSPs
will now be able to build Web Dynpro
applications in a familiar development
environment with substantial support for
efficient, reliable development that they
can reuse and \u2014 best of all \u2014 that
requires minimal coding.
Dynpro metamodel was designed in a
programming-language-neutral way. Web
Dynpro uses the model-view-controller
(MVC) approach to Web interface
development (see sidebar at top of next
page), so that a Web Dynpro component
and all its pieces have the same seman-
tics whether they are written in ABAP
or Java. The very first version of the Web
Dynpro development environment to be
delivered was for Java-based projects.
It included strong tool support from
SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio
based on the powerful, open-source
tooling platform Eclipse. The resulting
customer projects typically target SAP
NetWeaver Application Server Java as
the runtime environment.
But what if your team has strong
ABAP skills and a background in BSP
programming? Or perhaps the backend
services you would like to address are
not fully exposed as the Web services or
remote function modules required for
Java model binding? Or what if, from a
performance point of view, you cannot
afford a decoupling of UI logic executed
on the server and the underlying business
logic? What if you already have working
ABAP software maintenance in place
but cannot quickly set up a development
infrastructure for Java? In all these
cases, Web Dynpro ABAP can help.
This article takes you on a quick tour
through the tools of Web Dynpro ABAP
and walks you through a simple flight
report example to highlight new and
updated tools in the familiar ABAP
Web Dynpro ABAP is part of
SAP NetWeaver 2004s, which is the
foundation for the shipment of the
mySAP Business Suite, most promi-
nently mySAP ERP 2005. As its name
suggests, Web Dynpro ABAP uses exactly
controllers share the same semantics \u2014
so there is no need for developers to
learn a new UI paradigm. The main
differences between Web Dynpro Java
and ABAP are simple ones designed to
make it easy for developers to transition
between traditional ABAP projects and
Web Dynpro applications:
environment is embedded directly in the ABAP Workbench. (For a look at how the tools are similar in functionality, see the sidebar at bottom of next page.)
views, models, etc.) are listed just like any other of your ABAP-based projects and BSP applications. ABAP developers can access all projects in the same
all changes, versions them, and helps
propagate the Web Dynpro application
from development to production \u2014
just as you would do with any BSP
or dynpro-based applications.
The execution platform is the ABAP
server, rather than the Java server.
This ABAP server produces applica-
tion content ready to be seamlessly
integrated into the SAP NetWeaver
Portal. Features like portal eventing
can be used between applications
written in ABAP and in Java or
generated by Visual Composer.
The story of Web Dynpro ABAP
sounds simple: it\u2019s easy and efficient
to create a modern Web UI with very
little coding and in a familiar ABAP
Dynpro for Java, however, while creating
the UI is simple, the Web Dynpro tools
within the ABAP Workbench are highly
sophisticated. This article takes you on
a quick tour through the tools to show-
case their capabilities, walking through
a simple flight report example that
touches all major editors (see the result
in Figure 1). We created this same
Web Dynpro strictly follows themodel-view-controller (MVC) paradigm, meaning that any application you design with Web Dynpro cleanly separates the layout and the interaction code from the business data.* In this widespread UI-development paradigm, the component consists of three basic parts:
ables related to the user interface. ABAP developers can
think of the context as being similar to the field list,
while the dynpro fields are similar to the view. The field
transport then automatically copies the values from the
program to the user interface and vice versa. Likewise,
variables of the Web Dynpro context are copied back and
forth to corresponding Web Dynpro view fields.
interface with Web Dynpro Java in a
previous column.1As with Web Dynpro
Java, you might be surprised by how
little coding is required.
This article will introduce new or
updated tools that SAP has added to the
familiar ABAP environment, including:
Let\u2019s jump directly into our example,
beginning with the ABAP Development
Workbench (transaction SE80). In
box now includes a new category for
Web Dynpro Component/Interfaces.
Here\u2019s where our work starts.
You can think of a Web Dynpro component as a modular unit with various interfaces (both programmatic and UI-oriented).
Once you enter this component name, a
dialog pops up to actually begin creating
the Web Dynpro component in theWe b
port information. In our result, shown
in Figure 3, the outline of the newly
created Web Dynpro component is on
the left and some dependency informa-
tion is on the right.
One of the outstanding features of
the Web Dynpro model is its ability to
have data attached on various levels
(e.g., the view and the controller). This
is much like the classic dynpro, which
had a similar feature based on field lists
and dynpro fields; a field transport then
automatically copied the values from
the program to the UI and vice versa.
Web Dynpro follows this tradition,
but in a much more fine-grained way.
This is thecontext, which is technically
a hierarchy of variables related to parts
of the user interface. You can attach a
context to a view on the view level and
to a component on the component level,
which is not necessarily visualized. Once
you have defined the contexts at the
various levels, you can then graphically
map context nodes in the Context Editor
and the information flows automatically
\u2014 you will see this in our example.
Dynpro Development: New Design-Time Tools Now
Available with SAP Web Application Server 6.30\u201d in
the April-June 2003 issue of SAP Insider
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