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The context

As most people who come from the ABAP world, I started my journey into SAPUI5 by using SAP's tools: Eclipse and the SAPUI5 plugin. It appears to make our lives easier by setting up a local server for testing and running the proxy servlet to handle CORS problems. I say "appears" because then we see in the forums a lot of people with proxy related problems. In Eclipse you use something like this in your oData URLs


At the very least this is bad because you need to change your code when you deploy to a SAP server (or create a bunch of ifs to validade where your call if being made). What you should have is this:


and let the host be determined automatically by the server config. At first you are happy Eclipse handles this (albeit poorly), after a while you will want more control. This is how to do it.

The solution

Let me make this clear: Eclipse is a terrible SAPUI5 editor. You will want to get rid of it and I will help you do it. First step: running your own webserver with proxy. The solution - Node.js and Grunt.

First you must install Node.js from This will install the NPM javascript package manager that will be your friend for a lot of tasks. Then open terminal and run (with sudo/administrator if necessary):

npm install -g grunt-cli

Grunt is a javascript based task runner that handles repetitive development tasks for you. Setting up a webserver with proxy is such a task. There are two important files that you should put in your project folder (which you see in every Github project):

- package.json: Describes your project and its dependencies (for Node/NPM);

- gruntfile.js: Describes the tasks that should be run (for Grunt)

I'll write another blog to describe these in more detail, but for the time being lets focus on the gruntfile.js that will setup the server and proxy:

var proxySnippet = require('grunt-connect-proxy/lib/utils').proxyRequest;
module.exports = function(grunt){
    require('load-grunt-tasks')(grunt, {scope: 'devDependencies' });
        connect: {
            server: {
                options: {
                    port: <desired local port>,
                    hostname: 'localhost',
                    keepalive: true,
                    middleware: function (connect, options){
                        return [
                        context: '/sap/opu/odata',
                        host: '<sap_host>',
                        port: '<sap_port>',
                        https: false

The server-options setups the local webserver and the proxies setting redirects all URLs that begin with '/sap/opu/odata' to the specified remote server. Notice that you can configure several proxies for different URLs inside the [ ].

To run the script, just navigate to the project directory in Terminal, and then run "grunt". You should get something like this:

Well ... after you install the dependencies anyway :). To do this, save this simple package.json in your main project folder:

  "name": "<Project name>",
  "version": "0.1.0",
  "description": "<Descrition>",
  "main": "Component.js",

And then run these commands on the terminal (since you are not using the global install "-g" you won't need sudo or administrator):

npm install grunt-contrib-connect --save-dev
npm install grunt-connect-proxy --save-dev
npm install load-grunt-tasks --save-dev
npm install serve-static --save-dev

Now just run grunt again and you will get the screenshot I showed before. Remove the hostname and port from your oData calls, and they will be redirected according to the grunt file using the /sap/opu/odata path.

To confirm the redirections are being correctly handled, you can run grunt with the --verbose setting. If you do, every redirection made by the proxy will show up in the terminal:

Now that you don't need Eclipse to setup the webserver and proxy, you are one step closer to not needing it. Further steps on the next blog.

Side notes

If you look at the package.json you will see that entries have been added to the devDependencies. We will use this later to automatically install the dependencies using "npm install" - you don't have to perform all these steps manually every single time.

Finally, to make it clear how powerful these open source tools are becoming, I would like to point out that even Microsoft has included them in Visual Studio 2015 templates. You now see package.json and gruntfile.js (and bower.json) on ASP.Net projects :smile:

Edit 01/12/2015: Update require('serve-static')(options.base[0]) because of new connect version.

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