Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Liz McMillan, Thanh Tran, Carmen Gonzalez, Elizabeth White, Nate Vickery

Related Topics: Java IoT

Java IoT: Article

From JDJ's Next Issue: Large-Scale Java Development Projects with SAP

Managing development environments

Click Here to Download this story's .pdf file!

You know how to write good Java code and deployment to a server is no mystery either. But have you ever had to work in large development teams, maybe geographically dispersed (off-shoring...)? Ever had to address the pain of application software updates?

So often, when evaluating Java development tools, the focus is on productivity in writing code. While this is clearly important, it is essential not to underestimate the importance of managing the entire life cycle of an application - from setting up the development environment, to managing software delivery and maintaining the applications over the life cycle. The larger the project, the more critical this is, both from an efficiency and a financial point of view.

Over the past 30 years SAP has gathered in-depth experience in developing applications with large, geographically dispersed development teams. The delivery of software to the customer and the management of software upgrades and synchronizing these updates with customized code at the customer site are all issues that SAP has mastered. Now SAP is bringing the same high-quality approach to the Java world.

SAP Web Application Server
SAP Web Application Server is a key component of SAP's integration and application platform. SAP NetWeaver provides tool support for productive, model-driven and service-oriented Java development, but also, and this is key, an infrastructure that provides full-scale support for all phases of the life cycle - the Java Development Infrastructure (JDI). This infrastructure - tightly integrated with the SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio, delivered with the application server - reduces overall development TCO and provides for reliability and flexibility in the deployment and change management process.

Synchronized Team Development Made Easy
The JDI gives you the best of both worlds - you can still develop in Java in your local environment, but your team's work is also synchronized via a central development environment.

Within the JDI, the Design Time Repository (DTR) handles file versioning to ensure that all developers are working from the same set of code. Developers access the central service via the SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio, check out files, produce new versions in the local file system, and check them back in after successful local testing. In the DTR perspective, you can compare versions, check version or revision history, and so on. During development, you can synchronize repository and local file systems whenever you wish, or even interrupt the connection between the two and reconnect later.

From the DTR you can manage:

  • Different versions of a development object in the same repository
  • Multiple states of a software component (development and consolidation of several releases)
  • Multiple users making modifications to the same development object (with conflict detection)
Each state of software component development is represented in one workspace. The information about the state of a workspace can be propagated to other workspaces so you can synchronize the work of development teams using various instances of the DTR.

The DTR provides features for change management in a distributed, multiuser development environment. As you replace older versions of files with newer ones, the DTR handles this process centrally and keeps the version history. For more complex projects, though, you'll need more than that. Suppose modifications are occurring directly in end-users' systems, so various versions are being developed in parallel and multiple DTRs are in place. The version history is always deployed along with the files for global version history of the DTR. As a result, versions created in parallel are detected automatically across repository boundaries. Then there are times when, during code modifications, you may not want to have an earlier version automatically overwritten by updates - instead, the DTR supports the merging of two colliding versions, allowing you to combine the advantages of the newer version with your modifications. What's more, to reduce the maintenance effort as much as possible, you would want to integrate bug fixes from older releases into newer ones from the maintenance cycle. The DTR supports this, since changes are always deployed as a whole set of versions, instead of individually. This approach to change management means that the results are unaffected by the sequence in which the changes are applied. With its innovative approach to distributed development, the DTR enhances productivity and reduces costs of development throughout the whole product life cycle.

Component-Based Development for Efficient Projects
The JDI takes a component-based approach to development. A component hierarchy distinguishes multiple levels of granularity:

  • Development objects - the finest level of granularity: Tables, Java classes, and project files that are stored as versioned files.
  • Development components (DCs): The units of the development and build process - they group development objects into larger development components, whereby one DC can contain multiple DCs.
  • Software components: The deployment and installation units that are made up of DCs represent larger building blocks of products.
  • Product: The complete solution.
DCs are at the heart of application development and follow a simple principle: only the parts declared to be public are visible to other DCs. In other words, to use one development component from another DC, you need to explicitly declare this usage. This explicit declaration of dependencies between DCs and precise relationships between objects allows the encapsulation of functionality that leads to a fine-tuned, highly efficient build process in the Component Build Service.

Component Build Service
Speed up the build process and avoid errors with the Component Build Service. Ever experience night-builds of complete applications that fail - followed by another 24-hour wait for the next build? With the JDI, these days are over.

Like the DTR, the Component Build Service (CBS) is a J2EE application that uses a database. It hosts all Java archives needed or produced during software development. For each software component state, a buildspace is set up to contain these archives. You can trigger a central build in the CBS at any time. Central builds apply to modified DCs only, along with any DCs that have dependencies with the changed archives.

This DC build approach allows you to correct errors in smaller chunks, reducing bug-fix cycle times. A failed build process will not affect the build process of any other DC.

The CBS also provides:

  • J2EE cluster support for high performance
  • Automated build scripts for Java development
  • Automatic rebuild of dependent development components after changes to objects
After a successful build, the CBS automatically makes the sources and archives available for use by other developers. Because all archives are centrally stored and up-to-date in the CBS, it is an ideal source for retrieving or updating used libraries in your local file system. Faster build cycles and a current build environment significantly reduce development costs, time, and errors, especially in large projects.

Managing the Development Environment
The development process starts with the definition of a product in the Software Landscape Directory. Here you define which software components are used in the product and the dependencies between them.

This information is imported into the Change Management Service (CMS) where you define the environment for the developers. You create workspaces and buildspaces by defining a track that's used to describe the development environment for one software component state. Fill the buildspaces with all the libraries required for a development configuration. This in turn is imported as an XML file into the SAP NetWeaver Developer Studio, defining the access to those objects the developer needs for his/her task.

After development, the developer releases his/her work to the CMS again. Here the QM triggers the import into the consolidation system, after central releases approves and assembles a software component release. For the next release, it's not necessary to physically set up a new system; simply define a new track.

This gives you complete control of the product life cycle from product definition to application patches.

Key Takeaways
Let's summarize the advantages of this approach:

  • The development infrastructure is set up and managed centrally.
  • All sources are stored centrally in the DTR and retrieved for the central build process, and all archives are stored in the CBS, ensuring that you use the latest version of sources. You're assured a greater degree of safety when using archives.
  • Clearly defining dependencies and encapsulating functions facilitates reuse and maintenance of development components.
  • Distributed versioning and concurrency control allow you to manage large development projects taking place in different locations. Due to the DTR's versioning capabilities, modifications are not overwritten during updates, but can be integrated into the new version.
  • You'll find a centrally managed system landscape - there's no need for each developer to know precisely where to deploy an archive.
For more information on the SAP Web Application Server and the Java Development Infrastructure or to download a trial copy check out www.sdn.sap.com.

More Stories By Wolf Hengevoss

Wolf Hengevoss is a member of the SAP NetWeaver product management team.

More Stories By Chris Hearn

Chris Hearn is the product marketing director, SAP NetWeaver. Educated at Oxford University, England, Chris has 20 years of experience in IT in a variety of roles.

Comments (3) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
Unimpressed SAP dev team member 10/25/04 09:41:35 AM EDT

Omigod! SAP now has software configuration management, incremental build and J2EE capabilities...stuff that's been around for years...and sounds like they invented it. All yours for mega Deutsch marks.

Any other infomercials coming from other companies just thinking about joining the 21st century?

Surprised 10/24/04 09:34:02 AM EDT

Is this an advert or an article? How much do you think they get for it?

Jeff Nowakowski 10/23/04 12:54:07 PM EDT

I wonder how much SAP paid for this advertisement? By the way, CVS is free.

@ThingsExpo Stories
What a difference a year makes. Organizations aren’t just talking about IoT possibilities, it is now baked into their core business strategy. With IoT, billions of devices generating data from different companies on different networks around the globe need to interact. From efficiency to better customer insights to completely new business models, IoT will turn traditional business models upside down. In the new customer-centric age, the key to success is delivering critical services and apps wit...
The essence of data analysis involves setting up data pipelines that consist of several operations that are chained together – starting from data collection, data quality checks, data integration, data analysis and data visualization (including the setting up of interaction paths in that visualization). In our opinion, the challenges stem from the technology diversity at each stage of the data pipeline as well as the lack of process around the analysis.
As cloud and storage projections continue to rise, the number of organizations moving to the cloud is escalating and it is clear cloud storage is here to stay. However, is it secure? Data is the lifeblood for government entities, countries, cloud service providers and enterprises alike and losing or exposing that data can have disastrous results. There are new concepts for data storage on the horizon that will deliver secure solutions for storing and moving sensitive data around the world. ...
In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Adobe, will discuss how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects). Bruce Swann has more than 15 years of experience working with digital marketing disciplines like web analytics, social med...
Designing IoT applications is complex, but deploying them in a scalable fashion is even more complex. A scalable, API first IaaS cloud is a good start, but in order to understand the various components specific to deploying IoT applications, one needs to understand the architecture of these applications and figure out how to scale these components independently. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nara Rajagopalan is CEO of Accelerite, will discuss the fundamental architecture of IoT applications, ...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York and Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 17th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty ...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit y...
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will discuss the vast to...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo New York Call for Papers is now open.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu, a leading provider of cloud hosting solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive advantage. By offering a suite of proven hosting and management services, Enzu wants companies to foc...
SYS-CON Events announced today the How to Create Angular 2 Clients for the Cloud Workshop, being held June 7, 2016, in conjunction with 18th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Angular 2 is a complete re-write of the popular framework AngularJS. Programming in Angular 2 is greatly simplified. Now it’s a component-based well-performing framework. The immersive one-day workshop led by Yakov Fain, a Java Champion and a co-founder of the IT consultancy Farata Systems and...
Customer experience has become a competitive differentiator for companies, and it’s imperative that brands seamlessly connect the customer journey across all platforms. With the continued explosion of IoT, join us for a look at how to build a winning digital foundation in the connected era – today and in the future. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Nguyen, Group Product Marketing Manager at Adobe, will discuss how to successfully leverage mobile, rapidly deploy content, capture real-time d...
IoT generates lots of temporal data. But how do you unlock its value? How do you coordinate the diverse moving parts that must come together when developing your IoT product? What are the key challenges addressed by Data as a Service? How does cloud computing underlie and connect the notions of Digital and DevOps What is the impact of the API economy? What is the business imperative for Cognitive Computing? Get all these questions and hundreds more like them answered at the 18th Cloud Expo...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, will provide an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ContentMX, the marketing technology and services company with a singular mission to increase engagement and drive more conversations for enterprise, channel and SMB technology marketers, has been named “Sponsor & Exhibitor Lounge Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. “CloudExpo is a great opportunity to start a conversation with new prospects, but what happens after the...
SYS-CON Events announced today that 24Notion has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. 24Notion is full-service global creative digital marketing, technology and lifestyle agency that combines strategic ideas with customized tactical execution. With a broad understand of the art of traditional marketing, new media, communications and social influence, 24Notion uniquely understands how to con...
The demand for organizations to expand their infrastructure to multiple IT environments like the cloud, on-premise, mobile, bring your own device (BYOD) and the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to grow. As this hybrid infrastructure increases, the challenge to monitor the security of these systems increases in volume and complexity. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stephen Coty, Chief Security Evangelist at Alert Logic, will show how properly configured and managed security architecture can...
When it comes to IoT in the enterprise, namely the commercial building and hospitality markets, a benefit not getting the attention it deserves is energy efficiency, and IoT's direct impact on a cleaner, greener environment when installed in smart buildings. Until now clean technology was offered piecemeal and led with point solutions that require significant systems integration to orchestrate and deploy. There didn't exist a 'top down' approach that can manage and monitor the way a Smart Buildi...
SYS-CON Events announced today BZ Media LLC has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. BZ Media LLC is a high-tech media company that produces technical conferences and expositions, and publishes a magazine, newsletters and websites in the software development, SharePoint, mobile development and Commercial Drone markets.
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, will discuss the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to fo...