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Inspect Your Class in the ABAP Debugger

Requires Customer/Partner License
Work with ABAP classes in the ABAP Debugger in (ADT) for both a console application and SAP Fiori application.
You will learn
  • How to debug an ABAP Console application in ABAP Development Tools (ADT)
  • How to debug an ABAP class that provides the business logic for a SAP Fiori application
julieplummer20Julie PlummerNovember 8, 2021
Created by
November 18, 2019


This tutorial will get you familiar with the relevant tools, whether you are an ABAP newbie, experienced in SAPUI5 development, or an ABAP developer who is new to ADT / SAP Cloud Platform, ABAP Environment.

For more information, see:

More Information

  • Step 1
    1. Select your class, ZCL_OUTPUT_TEST_XXX and choose Duplicate from the context menu.

      This is clearly not standard practice. However, you are working with the ABAP Debugger for the first time, and also adding some dummy code to your class.

    2. Enter a name, e.g. ZCL_OUTPUT_TEST_DEBUG_XXX and choose Finish.

  • Step 2
    1. In the Project Explorer, select your project and choose Properties from the context menu.

      Image depicting step2-properties
    2. Choose ABAP Development > Debug.

    3. Change the setting Breakpoint activation … to User and enter your logon user.

      Image depicting step2a-debug-user
    4. Choose Apply and Close.
      Your class, which includes an RFC request, that is an external request to a different system / project. This enables you to debug the class.

    Note that breakpoints in the ABAP Development Tools (ADT) are by default external user breakpoints. For more information, see: Breakpoints - Characteristics

  • Step 3
    1. Right at the start of the method, add some simple code, e.g.

      IF 0 = 1.
    2. At the statement IF 0 = 1., set a breakpoint by double-clicking the ruler.

      Link text step3a-add-bp
    3. Repeat this - add the same code, then add a breakpoint - right at the end of the code, just before ENDTRY.

  • Step 4
    1. Run your application in the console by choosing F9.

    2. As soon as the first breakpoint is reached, a pop-up window suggests that you switch to the Debug perspective. Choose Switch.

      Image depicting step5-switch-perspective

    The Debugger perspective opens.

    Image depicting step5b-debugger
  • Step 5
    1. Switch to the Variables tab (to the right of the Class Editor).

    2. Add the system field SY-TABIX to the list, by clicking: < Enter Variable >

      This field is filled by the runtime system. You can then use them in programs to query the system status.

      Link text step5a-sy-tabix

      For a list of system variables, see: ABAP System Fields

    3. Expand Locals.

    4. Select the internal table lt_product and choose Show in Table View from the context menu.

      Link text step5c-table-view

    The internal table appears in a new tab in the bottom panel.

    Link text step5d-table-view
  • Step 6
    1. Switch to the Class Editor. You have 4 options for stepping through the program.

      • Step Into (F5) Execute the next single ABAP instruction in the program in the debugger. Step into a called procedure.

      • Step Over (F6) Execute the next ABAP statement. If the next step is a procedure call, run the entire procedure.

      • Step Return (F7) Run until the current procedure returns to its caller or until the program ends.

      • Run to Line (Shift F8) Run to the statement on which the cursor is positioned.

      Link text step6a-step-functions
    2. Step through the first few lines of the program line by line using F5 - UNTIL you get to the statement DATA(lo_rfc_dest) = cl_rfc_destination_provider=>create_by_cloud_destination....

    3. Since this statement calls a system class, which you do not want to debug it. Execute these two DATA statements using F6.

    4. When you get to CALL FUNCTION, STOP.
      You cannot execute this remote function in the Debugger, but you cannot debug it. If you choose F5, the Debugger will hang. You will have to terminate the Debugger session.
      Therefore, simply execute this using F7.

    Look at the Table View. lt_product is filled with the data from the BAPI.

    Link text step7a-filled-itab

    However, in the Variables View, ls_product is still empty. SY-TABIX = 25, the total rows in the table imported.

    Link text step6c-structure-empty
  • Step 7
    1. Proceed until you get to the statement LOOP AT lt_product INTO ls_product..

    2. Step through the LOOP...ENDLOOP. using F5. Note that the variable SY-TABIX starts at 1, then increments by 1 for each loop pass.

    3. Exit the Debugger by choosing Terminate from the main tool bar.

      Link text step7c-terminate
  • Step 8

    To jump straight from your first breakpoint to the CASE statement:

    1. Choose Run > ABAP Breakpoints > Add Statement Breakpoint…

      Link text step8-add-statement-bp
    2. Enter CASE, keep the setting Soft Breakpoint (so that you debug CASE statements only in your own class, not the whole stack), then choose OK.

      Link text step8b-bp-for-case-statement
    3. Run the Debugger again by choosing F9.

  • Step 9

    You may want to stop, not at a specific statement, but when a variable hits a specific value.
    To do this, run the Debugger again and proceed as follows:

    1. For clarity, you may wish to deactivate your CASE statement breakpoint in the Breakpoints View.

      Link text step9a-deactivate-case-bp
    2. In the Class Editor, select the field ls_product-suppliername and choose Set Watchpoint from the context menu.

      Link text step9b-select-field
    3. In the Breakpoints View, choose the watchpoint and enter the condition LS_PRODUCT-SUPPLIERNAME = 'AVANTEL'. Do not forget the single quotation marks.

      Link text step9e-watchpoint-avantel.png
    4. If you switch to the Variables View, you can monitor the values of the variable as you step through the loop.

      Link text step9d-watchpoint-in variables-view
    5. When the Debugger hits the correct row in the table, it stops.

      Link text step9f-avantel-in-variables-view
    6. When you are satisfied, terminate the Debugger.

    You can define a wide range of complex conditions for breakpoints and watchpoint. For more information, see SAP Help Portal: SAP Cloud Platform: ABAP Development User Guide: Adding Conditions to Breakpoints

  • Step 10

    You can also specify a specific value for a different variable.

    1. Start the Debugger again. Unlike a breakpoint, a watchpoint lasts only for the current Debugger session.

    2. In the Class Editor, select ls_product-suppliername and choose Set Watchpoint again.

      Link text step9b-select-field
    3. In the Breakpoints View, choose the watchpoint again. This time, enter the condition SY-TABIX = 4.

      Link text step9c-watchpoint-sy-tabix
    4. When the Debugger hits the correct row in the table, it stops.

      Link text step9g-table-view-pears
  • Step 11

    The class that you created previously (in Get Data from a Remote System Using a Custom Entity) is not displayed in the ABAP Console. However, you can start the ABAP Debugger for it as follows:

    1. Again, duplicate the class, in this case zcl_product_via_rfc_xxx.

    2. Open your custom entity, zce_product_xxx.

    3. Change the name of the implementing class to, e.g. ZCL_PRODUCT_DEBUG_XXX (upper case); then Save and Activate ( Ctrl+S, Ctrl+F3 ) the custom entity.


      @ObjectModel.query.implementedBy: 'ABAP:ZCL_PRODUCT_DEBUG'
    4. Open your service binding, ZSB_PRODUCT_XXX and choose Preview.

      Image depicting step14-preview
    5. Log in using your ABAP Environment user and password.

      The SAP Fiori elements preview then appears.

    6. Display the data by choosing Go.

      Image depicting step14b-preview-with-data

    You can also debug your application, displayed in the SAP Fiori elements preview, in the browser. This is beyond the scope of this tutorial, but for more information, see:

  • Step 12

    Which project-specific debug setting allows you to debug external requests (for example, RFC)?

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