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6.7 Integrating the Context-Sensitive Side Panel
The side panel in NWBC is not only a new UI area located on the side of the content area but also an infrastructure to enhance existing SAP GUI transactions from older releases without modifications.
Applications that can be run in the content area and be connected to a side panel comprise the following UI technologies:
SAP GUI (dynpro) applications
Web Dynpro ABAP applications
For more information, see Implementing Tagging.
The side panel allows you to connect data from the application in the content area with data in the side panel. NWBC extracts data from SAP GUI or Web Dynpro screens and passes them to the side panel, allowing you to build context-sensitive side panel applications.
The implementation of the side panel is different depending on whether a Web Dynpro application or an SAP GUI application is running in the content area.
The purpose of the following documentation is to describe the use of a side panel for exchanging data with SAP GUI-based applications in the content area.
The figure below illustrates the high-level overview of the side panel architecture and is followed by an explanation:
Side Panel Architecture
The application system is the system that hosts the application. The role system is the system that hosts the role displayed by NWBC and the side panel application. Application system and role system can be the same if the system version requirement for component SAP_BASIS is met (version 7.31 or higher).
At runtime, the following steps are executed:
NWBC connects to the role system and reads the user’s roles from transaction Role Maintenance (PFCG).
NWBC downloads tags.
Tags are the basis for the extraction process. They define which screen properties are to be extracted from an application running in the content area, and with which name the extracted properties are passed to the side panel application. All tags are stored in the tag table. For more information, see 6.7.2 Creating Tags in the Tag Table.
For more information about using tagging with Web Dynpro applications, see Setting Up Tagging in the Side Panel.
The role definition describes which side panel application is to be shown for a certain application. NWBC reads this information and displays the appropriate side panel applications. For more information, see 5.10 Side Panel.
NWBC extracts the data from the dynpro application and puts the values into the data context, making them available for all side panel applications. Data is extracted using SAP GUI scripting that is part of SAP GUI.
You have installed and enabled SAP GUI scripting on the server.
As of NWBC 3.5 patch level 6 or NWBC 4.0 and SAP GUI 7.20 patch level 13 or 7.30 final release, it is no longer necessary to enable SAP GUI Scripting on the client PC, except if you are using Property Collector. That means, it is no longer necessary to enable front-end scripting through registry key (HKLM and HKCU) for using side panels in NWBC. However, it is still necessary to install SAP GUI Scripting and to enable it for the server (at least read-only).End of the note.
If SAP GUI scripting is enabled, the screens can be read.
For more information about SAP GUI scripting, see chapter Installation in the SAP GUI Scripting Security Guide SAP Developer Network (SDN) at http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/sdn/go/portal/prtroot/docs/library/uuid/3099a575-9cf4-2a10-9492-9838706b9262.End of the caution.
You can also use read-only scripting. For more information, see the SAP GUI scripting API documentation at http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/sdn/go/portal/prtroot/docs/library/uuid/a034a16b-3bfe-2a10-e2bb-8bd880db0b3c.
We recommend read-only scripting.End of the recommendation.
The data extracted from SAP GUI is in the external format. If the side panel application needs the internal format (for example, to call the application system), NWBC calls the conversion service on the application system to convert the external to the internal format. The data conversion is optional and must be enabled in the tag table. For more information, see 4.2 Active Services in ICF and 6.7.2 Creating Tags in the Tag Table.
The side panel application receives the extracted data as an input.
At design time, an additional component is important, SAP GUI Property Collector. It is integrated into NWBC and allows you to identify properties that should be extracted from SAP GUI. Additionally, it allows you to simulate the lifetime of extracted values in the data context. For more information, see 6.7.1 Identification of UI Elements by Using SAP GUI Property Collector. You copy the collected properties to the tag table and map them there to tags.
The following version requirements must be met:
NWBC for Desktop: version 3.5 or higher (for the data context)
SAP GUI: version 7.20 patch level 9 or higher (for the data context)
Component SAP_BASIS of the role system: version 7.31 or higher (for the tag table, transaction PFCG, and side panel application)
Component SAP_BASIS of application system: version 7.31 or SAP Note 1611298 for older versions (for the conversion service)
No requirements for other software components of the application system (for the dynpro application)
The architecture provides a flexible system landscape. The following setups are possible:
The application system and role system are the same physical system. If you are able to upgrade SAP_BASIS to version 7.31, this is the logical choice with minimum total cost of ownership.
To enhance existing SAP GUI transactions from older releases without modifications, you can keep the application systems on their current release. In this case, only the role system must be an up-to-date SAP system with SAP_BASIS 7.31.
You have the following options:
You can reuse existing roles from your application systems. To reuse existing roles, import the roles from your application system into the role system. For more information, see 5.11 Remote Systems.
You can create new roles in the role system. When you create roles, use remote roles to include transactions of the application system. You also need to configure a trusted relationship between the role and application system. For more information, see 5.11 Remote Systems.
SAP supports this side-by-side scenario with some restrictions, but does not recommend to implement a hub scenario. For more information about the definition of the scenarios as well as the restrictions of working with remote systems, see SAP Note 1795171.End of the caution.
Handling Invisible Data
If the side panel application needs to write data that is not visible in the dynpro application to the data context, this data cannot be extracted on the client. Therefore, NWBC offers an application programming interface (API): IF_LSAPI. This API can be called from the back-end part of the dynpro application to write data to the data context. This mechanism forces you to modify the existing dynpro application. For more information, see 6.7.7 Passing Data to Side Panel Application Using API.
Implementation of a Side Panel Application
Side panel applications are Web applications. You have the following options to implement a side panel application:
For information, see 6.7.5 Implementation of a Side Panel Application with HTML and J.
Web Dynpro ABAP
For more information, see 6.7.6 Implementation of a Side Panel Application with Web Dynpro.
Web Dynpro ABAP Page Builder
We recommend that you use Web Dynpro ABAP Page Builder to implement side panel applications. You define a side panel by creating CHIPs that are displayed on this side panel.
If you use the same tags, the system automatically wires the side panel application and the SAP GUI transaction.
For more information about using side panels for SAP Business Suite, see SAP Library for SAP Business Suite on SAP Help Portal at.
The following content is not part of SAP product documentation. For more information, see the following disclaimer .