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ABAP programming

ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming) is a programming language created by the German software company SAP. It is currently positioned as the language for programming SAP's Web Application Server, part of its NetWeaver platform for building business applications. Its syntax is somewhat similar to COBOL.


ABAP was one of many application-specific fourth-generation languages (4GLs) developed in the 1980s. It was originally the report language for SAP R/2, a platform that enabled large corporations to build mainframe business applications for materials management and financial and management accounting. ABAP originally stood for Allgemeiner Berichtsaufbereitungsprozessor, German for "generic report preparation processor." Early on ABAP included the concept of Logical Databases (LDBs), providing a high level of abstraction from the basic database level.

ABAP was intended to be used by end users so that they could manipulate the data themselves, but the 4GL turned out to be too complex for ordinary users. High-level programming skills are still required to create ABAP programs.

ABAP remained the language for creating programs for the client-server R/3 system, which SAP first released in 1992. As computer hardware advanced through the 1990s, more and more of SAP's systems were written in ABAP. By 2001, all but the most basic functions were written in ABAP. In 1999, SAP released an object-oriented extension to ABAP called ABAP Objects, along with R/3 release 4.5.

SAP's latest development platform, NetWeaver, supports both ABAP and Java.

The article above is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "ABAP".