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Web Dynpro

Web Dynpro

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03/18/2014

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Subscribe today. Visit www.SAPinsider.com.

One of the standout features of SAP
NetWeaver is its support for open tech-
nology and user interfaces that are

browser-based, model-driven, device-
independent, and accessible \u2014 in short,
everything today\u2019s Web applications
require. SAP NetWeaver\u2019s UI technology,

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.

Some Background on
Web Dynpro
From the very beginning, the Web

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

environment.

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

Web Dynpro \u2014 Not Just
for Java Developers
Anymore
Regular Feature
Under
Development
Karl Kessler, SAP AG
the same metamodel as its cousin Web
Dynpro Java, and their views, models, and

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:

\u25a0
The Web Dynpro ABAP design-time

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.)

Web Dynpro artifacts (components,

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

way and in a familiar environment.
\u25a0
ABAP developers won\u2019t find
any surprises in the development
This article appeared in the Jan\u25a0 Feb\u25a0 Mar 2006 issue of SAP Insider and appears here with
permission from the publisher, Wellesley Information Services (WIS),www.WISpubs.com.
Subscribe today. Visit www.SAPinsider.com.
infrastructure, either. The correction
and transport system keeps track of

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.

\u25a0

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

development environment. As with Web

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

Similar Functions, Different Tools
Here is a quick look at the tools used for various designing tasks with dynpro
and their corresponding tools when using the Web Dynpro model.
Tool Aspect
Dynpro
Web Dynpro
Layout
Screen Painter
Field List Editor
View Designer
Context Editor
Outline of
program/component
Object Browser
Web Dynpro Explorer
Event code
ABAP Editor
ABAP Editor
Navigation
Implicit in code
Navigation Modeler
Data flow
Implicit in code
Data Modeler
Figure 1
The Final Flight Search Interface, Automatically Generated and
Viewed in the Browser

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:

\u25a0
Model\u2014 The model indicates the business data to be
manipulated and corresponds to the global data and
tables of the module pool.
\u25a0
View\u2014 The layout information is all held in the view,
which corresponds roughly to fields and subscreens in the
traditional dynpro model.
\u25a0
Controller\u2014 The controller manages the interaction of
the interface. This corresponds to the flow logic in the
classical dynpro model.
Some other Web Dynpro terms include:
\u25a0
Context\u2014 The context is technically a hierarchy of vari-

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.

\u25a0
Service controller\u2014 A service controller is a controller
that encapsulates a service call. In the example we walk
through in this article, this is a simple BAPI call.
\u25a0
Component\u2014 A component is a modular unit with
various interfaces (both programmatic and UI-oriented).
A Brief Guide to Web Dynpro Terminology for ABAP Developers
* For an overview of MVC, see my article in the April-June 2003 issue of SAP Insider, as well as the article by Dr. Peter Tillert in the October-December 2003 issue, entitled
\u201cHow to Streamline User Interfaces: Web Dynpro Makes Software Reuse a Reality\u201d (www.SAPinsider.com).
Subscribe today. Visit www.SAPinsider.com.

interface with Web Dynpro Java in a
previous column.1As with Web Dynpro
Java, you might be surprised by how
little coding is required.

New Workbench Tools for Web
Dynpro ABAP

This article will introduce new or
updated tools that SAP has added to the
familiar ABAP environment, including:

\u25a0
Web Dynpro Explorer
\u25a0
Web Dynpro Designer
\u25a0
Web Dynpro Wizard
\u25a0
New updates to editing code in the
ABAP Workbench

Let\u2019s jump directly into our example,
beginning with the ABAP Development
Workbench (transaction SE80). In

Figure 2, you can see that the dropdown

box now includes a new category for
Web Dynpro Component/Interfaces.
Here\u2019s where our work starts.

The Web Dynpro Component

You can think of a Web Dynpro component as a modular unit with various interfaces (both programmatic and UI-oriented).

To start the process, name your new
component (z_bapiflight in our example).

Once you enter this component name, a
dialog pops up to actually begin creating
the Web Dynpro component in theWe b

Dynpro Explorer. Here, you\u2019ll be asked to
fill in the typical correction and trans-

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.

Figure 2
Launching the ABAP Development Workbench in
SAP NetWeaver 2004s
1
See \u201cUnder Development: Your \u2018Easy Way In\u2019 to Web

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
(www.SAPinsider.com).

Figure 3
Viewing the Newly Created Web Dynpro Component
Subscribe today. Visit www.SAPinsider.com.

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