SAP NetWeaver Exchange Infrastructure

Purpose

Exchange Infrastructure in SAP NetWeaver (SAP NetWeaver XI) enables you to implement cross-system processes. It enables you to connect systems from different vendors (non-SAP and SAP) in different versions and implemented in different programming languages (Java, ABAP, and so on) to each other. SAP Exchange Infrastructure is based on an open architecture, uses open standards (in particular those from the XML and Java environments) and offers those services that are essential in a heterogeneous and complex system landscape:

?     Modeling and design of messages, transformations, and cross-component integration processes

?     Configuration options for managing collaborative processes and message flow

?     Runtime for message and process management

?     Adapter Engine for integrating heterogeneous system components

?     Central monitoring for monitoring message flow and processes

SAP NetWeaver XI supports internal company scenarios and cross-company scenarios.

In this documentation, a collaborative process is a process in the business world that requires cross-system implementation. Note that this term does not describe any concrete objects of this implementation.

Integration

Overview section.

SAP NetWeaver XI is part of the usage type Process Integration.

Features

SAP NetWeaver XI is based on general standards so as to enable external systems to be integrated. At the center of the infrastructure is an XML-based communication that uses HTTP (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol). The application-specific contents are transferred in messages in user-defined XML (eXtensible Markup Language) schema from the sender to the receiver using the Integration Server.

In the above graphic, Integration Broker is an SAP NetWeaver capability (that is, the features for a technological area of SAP NetWeaver) that is supported by SAP NetWeaver XI. The Integration Server, on the other hand, is a technical runtime component.

Senders and receivers that exchange messages using the Integration Server are separated from one another. This separation makes it easier to connect systems that are technologically different. Every system that can exchange messages with the Integration Server can also exchange messages with all other systems that are connected to the Integration Server. SAP NetWeaver XI supports the following methods of communication with the Integration Server:

?     Direct communication using proxies, which you generate in the application systems beforehand using a description in WSDL (Web Service Description Language).

?     Communication using adapters. In this case, you create interfaces for message exchange in the application system, or use existing interfaces.

Simple message processing on the Integration Server is stateless. This means that the Integration Server does not know of any connections between various messages. Cross-component integration processes, on the other hand, describe related processes, which can use the knowledge about messages that have already been processed to further control the process (for example, waiting for the corresponding response for a message in order to start further actions). You can use SAP NetWeaver XI to model, change, and manage these cross-component integration processes centrally. These processes are executed on the Integration Server and are included in message processing by configuration.

As with cross-component integration processes, you save the entire integration knowledge of a collaborative process centrally in SAP NetWeaver XI: Objects at design time in the Integration Repository and objects at configuration time in the Integration Directory. In this way, SAP Exchange Infrastructure follows the principle of shared collaboration knowledge: You no longer need to search for information about a collaborative process in each of the systems involved, but can call this information centrally instead. This procedure considerably reduces the costs for the development and maintenance of the shared applications.

Areas of SAP NetWeaver XI in Detail

Area

Description

Integration Builder

Central tool for the design and configuration of the collaborative process. All the basic functions of the Integration Builder are described in this section. All subareas for design and configuration, and their editors (often graphical) in the Integration Builder, are documented in the subsections for Design and Configuration (see below).

Software Logistics for XI Objects

Organization of objects within SAP NetWeaver XI, versioning and transport of these objects.

Design (Integration Repository)

Designing Integration Scenarios

Design of the collaborative process at the application component level. In the Integration Builder, integration scenarios are used as the central point for understanding the relationships between the objects involved (interfaces, mappings, integration processes). You also use design at configuration time to map the collaborative process to the current system landscape.

Designing Integration Processes (ccBPM)

Design of executable integration processes. Cross-component integration processes support a stateful message processing on the Integration Server.

Designing Interfaces and Proxy Generation

Description and use of messages in interfaces for message exchange. You create interfaces in the Integration Builder and use proxy generation to generate executable proxies in SAP application systems. Furthermore, you can use the Integration Builder to import message schema and SAP interfaces to the Integration Repository for use in the further design process.

Designing Mappings

Design of graphical message mappings and import of Java and XSLT mappings. Description of how to register these mapping programs for the source and target interface.

Configuration (Integration Directory)

Defining Collaboration Profiles

Description of the technical sender and receiver options (and how to identify them) using communication parties, services, and communication channels.

Defining Receiver Determinations

Description at a logical level of which service a message is to be sent to. The service can be a business system, an integration process, or a service for a B2B communication.

Defining Interface Determinations

Assignment of a receiver interface to a sender interface. You also register whether mapping programs are to be executed from the Integration Repository for this interface pair, and if so, which mapping programs.

Defining Collaboration Agreements

In a collaboration agreement you define which communication channel to use to process messages for a particular combination of senders and receivers.

Defining Configuration Scenarios

Grouping of all configuration objects by the scenario in which they are required. You can apply integration scenarios from the Integration Repository for a configuration scenario in the Integration Directory.

Runtime

Integration Engine

Central runtime component of the Integration Server for receiving, processing, and forwarding messages.

Proxy Runtime

Runtime component for proxy communication between the Integration Server and application systems based on SAP Web AS.

Adapter Engine

Runtime components that use adapters to connect external systems and R/3 systems to the Integration Server by means of RFC calls. The IDoc adapter and the plain HTTP adapter run independently of the Adapter Engine.

Central Monitoring

Functions for monitoring the involved SAP NetWeaver XI components, the message processing by one or more components, and the performance of message processing.

Additional Tools (Optional)

Tool

Use

ARIS for SAP NetWeaver

Adds functions to SAP NetWeaver for graphically modeling processes at various levels. At the highest level (Process Architecture Model), the process architecture of a company is built from a purely business perspective, that is, without technical details.

You can find ARIS for SAP NetWeaver in the SAP Software Distribution Center on SAP Service Marketplace at service.sap.com/swdc.

SAP Conversion Agent by Itemfield

Adds functions for converting data to and from XML to SAP NetWeaver. It can process unstructured, semi-structured, and structured data. The Conversion Agent can be called using an adapter module in the Adapter Framework of SAP NetWeaver Exchange Infrastructure.

You can find SAP Conversion Agent by Itemfield in the SAP Software Distribution Center on SAP Service Marketplace at service.sap.com/swdc.