Process Flow for External Communication

Purpose

This section describes the process flow when external messages are sent and received in the SAP System.

Process Flow

Incoming messages

  1. Messages are either transferred to SAPconnect using the SMTP plug-in or the external communications system registers with the SAP System by RFC and transfers the messages to SAPconnect.
  2. SAPconnect forwards the messages to the Business Communication Interface (BCI), or in newer versions to Business Communication Services (BCS).
  3. The BCI/BCS determines the recipients in address management.
  4. The BCI/BCS puts the messages into the inbox of the SAP user or transfers them to the business objects.
  5. SAPconnect synchronously returns a confirmation or non-confirmation of receipt.
  6. If an SAP user calls a message in their inbox, a read receipt is returned asynchronously.

Outgoing messages

  1. Applications transfer the objects document, attachments, sender, recipient and/or business object ID to the BCI/BCS. Users can specify the recipients and, if necessary, the communication method on the send screen. The Send function transfers messages to the BCI/BCS
  2. The BCI/BCS stores the messages as message objects in the queue.
  3. The SAPconnect send processes read the messages from the queue.
  4. Using the recipient address, the send processes determine the nodes through which the messages are to be sent. If necessary, the messages are converted into the output format specified in the node for the communication method.
  5. When messages are sent to fax numbers or paging numbers using the SMTP plug-in, the numbers are converted into an Internet address with the domain specified in the SMTP node for the communication method.
  6. The send processes transfer the messages either to the SMTP plug-in or by RFC to the nodes determined (that is, the external communication systems).
  7. The node confirms - for each recipient - whether the send order was:
    1. Rejected or executed successfully (synchronous status) or
    2. Accepted for dispatch later

In scenario (b), the node subsequently confirms whether or not the document could be successfully sent (asynchronous status).

SAP users can trace the status of messages they have sent in their outbox. The current status and the transmission history (that is, the status history) are also available. The administrator can evaluate the status of all messages and, if necessary, apply error-handling measures.