ABAP Basic Concepts

First, let's check the ABAP Programming Language characteristics:

  • Typed Language

  • Allows Multi-Language applications

  • Enables SQL access

  • Evolved to a object-oriented language

  • Platform Independent

  • Assures future compatibility

ABAP has been designed for business applications, such as dialogs.

Multi-Language is supported by trasnlatable text elements.

Through its open SQL standard, ABAP allows direct access to databases.

As of release 4.6, the ABAP Objects enhancement has added OOP support to ABAP.

No matter the OS or DBMS, ABAP syntax has always the same meaning; that is, ABAP is platform-independent.

Upward compatibilty is guaranteed in future releases.

ABAP Return Code

After each statement, ABAP returns a Return Code that is stored in global variable SY-SUBRC. If it equals zero, then the statement was succesful; otherwise, an error occured. Not every command modifies this value, but those that ca go wrong will modify it.

This is a very important thing in ABAP programming; you should always check SY-SUBRC to make sure that there were no errors during the execution of statements.


When developing, you can always get help from the system. When you press the F1 key, you will get the help for the command on which the cursos is positioned.

You can navigate the help menu to find what you are looking for; the ABAP Help is very useful, and ranges almost every topic of the ABAP Programming Language.