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Portal Architecture


The SAP NetWeaver Portal is a Java EE application, designed to run portal applications .

A portal application is a collection of components and services written specifically to be run in the portal. The portal comes with out-of-the-box applications, for example, for displaying navigation hierarchies or for creating iViews. Additionally, developers can create and deploy their own applications.

A portal application is packaged as a compressed file that contains Java class files, an application descriptor and other resource files. Applications include one or more of the following:

  • Portal Component: A Java class that produces HTML. A component is called as a result of an HTTP request.

  • Portal Service: A Java class that provides services to components and other services.

Components and services are only deployed as part of a portal application.

For more information, see Portal Applications .

The portal is comprised of the following main parts:

  • Portal Runtime Container (PRT) : A Web container extension that is able to run portal components and send back the HTML response produced by the components.

    The Portal Runtime includes a dispatcher servlet, which receives HTTP requests for portal components and starts the request cycle.

  • Portal Content Directory (PCD) : A repository for portal semantic objects, such as iViews, pages, systems, and transport packages. The data about portal objects is stored in the AS Java database.

    The PCD is accessed via PCD Generic Layer (GL), which also enables the following additional features:

    • Locking of objects

    • Delta links

    • Personalization

    • Caching

    PCD GL exposes an API for working with the PCD, such as creating and searching for objects.

    For more information, see Portal Content Directory (PCD) Overview .

  • AS Java : The Portal Runtime container runs within AS Java, which also hosts other applications and services required by the portal, such as the Connector Framework and User Management Engine.

    For more information, see Administering Application Server Java .

The following figure illustrates the architecture of the portal.

For detailed explanation of the portal runtime workflow, see How Requests Are Handled by Server .