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Welcome to February 8th, 2021 which is the thirteenth (unlucky for end users) International Editable SALV Day. See below for a link to a blog I wrote to celebrate this day exactly one year ago

This day marks the 13th anniversary of James Hawthorne going cap in hand to SAP and suggesting maybe the CL_SALV_TABLE could be brought up to functional parity with the CL_GUI_ALV_GRID and have an option to be editable.

This series of blogs was feeling rather lonely, but another series of blogs has started this time about the ongoing refusal of SAP to decide about the BUILD product:

In addition, here is a link to a blog full of minor bugs in standard SAP that could be fixed in five seconds if there was a will/desire to do so

Going back to the SALV the situation is as follows

  • CL_SALV_TABLE was introduced as the successor to CL_GUI_ALV_GRID many years ago and was supposed to be better in every way, more OO and so on.

  • Sadly the “better” solution had less functionality than the solution it was supposed to replace e.g. in the areas of editability and adding custom functions in the toolbar

  • This is ironic as the CL_SALV_TABLE is in fact a “wrapper” for the CL_GUI_ALV_GRID

Meanwhile back in the real world, the end users keep asking us poor developer types to make reports editable. The easiest way to do this is to migrate your program from CL_SALV_TABLE back to CL_GUI_ALV_GRID whilst keeping the one function CL_SALV_TABLE is good at i.e. generating a field catalogue from an internal table.

Many programmers, myself included, have written blogs and what not describing how to get around the editable limitation using assorted dirty tricks. The programmers at SAP did react to that, closing off the workarounds when they could.

In essence the question is – if SAP has a million end users and tens of thousands of “customer” developers and every single one of them wants something and it is easy to provide, why the outright refusal to provide it?

You might say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. Someday SAP might join us, and the world will be as one. This has in fact happened once in the past – SAP refused to enhance business workflow for over ten years, hoping people would pay a separate license fee for an equivalent product instead. In the end they caved in and added new features and updated the ABAP editor in SWO1 to the latest version and so on.

It could be argued that in nine years’ time everyone will have to move to S/4HANA and so the SAP GUI “problem” goes away, but if that is the case why is so much effort being invested in new features in the SAP GUI. The bug filled SAP GUI 7.70 came out the other day, and that has tons of new features, some of them even work.

The problem with that argument (soon no-one will use the SAP GUI and hence the ALV) is that many organizations that have made the jump to S/4HANA have chosen the on-premise version, so they will be using the SAP GUI possibly beyond 2030 as getting everyone to use UI5 is not as easy as some had hoped.

In any event, to sum up, the whole thing is futile. The SALV will remain as non-editable no matter that 100% of people wish the opposite. It is like when the UK government had a vote on what to call the new Antarctic explorer and the winner by a landslide was “Boaty McBoatface” but the UK government did not like the result of that democratic election and so called the ship “Sir David Attenborough” instead. There was another democratic election somewhere recently where the incumbent refused to accept the result, but I cannot recall exactly what country that was.

In an effort to support democracy Sir David Attenborough has announced he is going to change his name by deed poll to “Sir Boaty McBoatface” so the name of the ship will have to change as well, and in that country I shall not name the vote of the people won in the end, but when it comes to the SALV it is rather like Otis Redding sang in 1967, the year before I was born:

I'm writin’ these SALV blogs, wastin' time

Look like nothin's gonna change

Everything, still remains the same

SALV can't do what ten million people want it to do

So I guess It'll remain the same, yes

See you next year!

Cheersy Cheers



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