AbaConnect Frequently Asked Questions

Last Modified : 20.01.2014

Note : This document is currently only available in English.

This document contains a number of questions that are commonly asked about the ABACUS AbaConnect interfaces.


Contents - Questions

A list of current questions. Click on the question to navigate to the answer below.

No.CategoryQuestion
GENERAL  What is AbaConnect ?  
GENERAL  Where can I find information about AbaConnect ?  
GENERAL  Is there any licence required to use AbaConnect interfaces ?  
GENERAL  What licence is necessary to use Dossiers via the AbaConnect interfaces ?  
ABACONNECT XML  What is the difference between AbaConnect ASCII and XML interfaces ?  
ABACONNECT XML  What is the difference between AbaConnect Flat and Hierarchy interfaces ?  
ABACONNECT XML  Does an AbaConnect Import XML File have to contain all the XML Element fields in the Default Mapping ?  
ABACONNECT XML  What is the correct way to edit or save an XML file to retain the encoding in UTF-8 ?  
ABACONNECT XML  What are special characters and how can they be represented in XML using UTF-8 encoding ?  
10  COMMAND LINE  How can I detect error responses during AbaConnect Command Line exports and imports ?  
11  COMMAND LINE  Where can I find the required parameters to export an AbaConnect interface via command line ?  
12  WEB SERVICES  How can I tell if an AbaConnect interface is accessible via WebServices ?  
13  WEB SERVICES  How can I test if an ABACUS installation supports AbaConnect WebServices ?  
14  WEB SERVICES  How can Apache TCPMon be configured the view and save the SOAP messages ?  
15  WEB SERVICES  Can the ABACUS AbaEngine WebService be used for exporting data ?  



Questions and Answers

Questions and Answers relating to AbaConnect.
 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
What is AbaConnect ? 
GENERAL  AbaConnect is a central ABACUS Framework for importing and exporting data to and from ABACUS Applications. AbaConnect can be used via Prog 625 in the ABACUS Menu and command line to export and import data via XML file. Many of the AbaConnect interfaces are also available as WebService. With WebServices, it is possible to develop an independent program (e.g. with JAVA, Microsoft .NET, etc) to import and export data with other software.  

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
Where can I find information about AbaConnect ? 
GENERAL  Information about the AbaConnect interfaces is available in the ABACUS Prog 625 in the AbaConnect Configuration panel. Detailed information about field properties can be viewed via the "Properties" in the Right-Mouse-Menu. AbaConnect documentation for a particular interface can be exported via the Right-Mouse-Menu in the Application tree.

Information about AbaConnect is also available on the ABACUS Homepage (www.abacus.ch) under

Downloads - Documentation - AbaConnect (http://www.abacus.ch/downloads-page/abaconnect/dokumentationen)
(contains the general documentation for the AbaConnect Interfaces and Batch File/Command Line)

and

Downloads - Drivers/Tools - AbaConnect (http://www.abacus.ch/downloads-page/abaconnect/webservices)
(for developers : contains the AbaConnect WSDL's, documentation, and examples in .NET und Java - available after registration by Email)
WebService examples are available in .NET and Java for ADRE, FIBU, DEBI, KRED, LOHN und PROJ.
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
Is there any licence required to use AbaConnect interfaces ? 
GENERAL  The AbaConnect Framework is installed in a standard ABACUS installation. There is no separate licence required to use the AbaConnect Framework, but depending on the specific AbaConnect interface, a licence option may be required to use the interface. Whether or not an AbaConnect interface requires a licence option is defined by the Application. A licence option may be required to use a single interface or a group of interfaces. There are a number of interfaces that do not require any special licence option and some require a licence option for import, but none for export. It is recommended to consult the particular Application support to clarify which licence options are necessary for a particular interface. 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
What licence is necessary to use Dossiers via the AbaConnect interfaces ? 
GENERAL  The Dossier interface is a stand-alone, central interface since ABACUS Version 2010 (CentralDossier_2010.00). Dossiers from various ABACUS Applications can be exported and imported using the CentralDossier_2010.00. As of ABACUS Version 2009, some applications have integrated the Dossier element into their application interfaces (e.g. LOHN HierachyEmployee_2009.00 and DocumentDossierAccountsReceivable_2009_00).

To use the AbaConnect Dossier interfaces it is necessary to have the Achivierung Application installed. The Mandant must be enabled for the Archivierung in AbaTools-Mandant-Freigeben and the ABACUS User must be an "Archivierungs-User". If the Dossier interface is part of an application interface then it is also necessary to have the licence option necessary for that specific application interface.
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
What is the difference between AbaConnect ASCII and XML interfaces ? 
ABACONNECT XML  The AbaConnect Framework has been designed to support the previous ASCII interfaces. The newer AbaConnect interface are generally in XML format. ASCII formats can only be represented in a flat structure, whereas XML formats can support hierarchial structures containing child-nodes. 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
What is the difference between AbaConnect Flat and Hierarchy interfaces ? 
ABACONNECT XML  A flat AbaConnect interface has a simple XML data structure with one parent root node and a number of child nodes on the same level. A hierarchial interface can have multiple child-parent nodes nested at different levels in the data structure. A hierarchial interface can represent more complex data structures within a single inderface. 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
Does an AbaConnect Import XML File have to contain all the XML Element fields in the Default Mapping ? 
ABACONNECT XML  An AbaConnect XML Import file does not have to contain all the fields listed in the Default mapping (e.g. AbaDefault) for the interface. As a minimum, all mandatory fields must be present. Depending on particular Mandant settings and field dependencies, other filds may have to be present in order for the data to be succesfully imported. 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
What is the correct way to edit or save an XML file to retain the encoding in UTF-8 ? 
ABACONNECT XML  An XML File normally has the encoding specified on the first line of the XML file. AbaConnect XML files use as default the UTF-8 encoding. There are a number of Open Source tools available for editing XML with the correct encoding. The Windows Notepad Editor should not be used to save XML files because it does not always save the file with the correct encoding. Some examples of Open Source XML Editors are available from Syntext Serna Free (http://sourceforge.net/projects/sernafree.mirror) and Notepad++ (http://sourceforge.net/projects/notepad-plus/files)
A simple test to check most XML encoding problems is to open the XML file in the Internet Explorer. Encoding errors will normally be shown with an error message. Make sure to scroll to the end of the XML file in the Internet Browser when looking for errors.
If the XML file is written via a program, the program must use the defined encoding to write the XML file.
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
What are special characters and how can they be represented in XML using UTF-8 encoding ? 
ABACONNECT XML  Because XML uses certain characters to format and represent the data (e.g. < > &), these characters must be represented with the following codes :
  • < must be written as &lt;
  • > must be written as &gt;
  • & must be written as &amp;
  • " can be written as &quot;
  • ' can be written as &apos;
When an XML file is saved with the correct encoding, most other special characters can be written normally. The saving of the XML file with the correct encoding will save the characters correctly. The default encoding for AbaConnect XML files is UTF-8.

Alternatively, special characters can be represented with a decimal code (&#<decimal-nummer>;) that is compatible with UTF-8. For Example :
  • ! can be represented as &#033;
  • % can be represented as &#037;
  • ä can be represented as &#228;
  • ö can be represented as &#246;
  • é can be represented as &#233;
  • € can be represented as &#8364;
The decimal codes are well documented on various internet sites (e.g. Wikipedia). This method is very useful to correct XML files with incorrect encodings. A small disadvantage is that the XML file is less readable in an editor when characters are represented in this way.
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
10  How can I detect error responses during AbaConnect Command Line exports and imports ? 
COMMAND LINE  There are two types of errors that can occur when executing AbaConnect via the command line :

1. Normal messages that are logged in the AbaConnect response file.
2. Exception messages that interrupt the running process before it can be fully completed.

In the 1st case the error messages can be analysed in the repsonse file. The response file has the same format as the response file generated using the ABACUS Menu Prog 625. The 2nd case is usually caused by bad command line arguements (e.g. Username and Password are incorrectly defined or AbaConnect interface ID, etc.). This may cause the command line process to end before a reponse file can be written.
Hint : It is recommended to always write a response file for AbaConnect command line (with "-responseYES") and after the execution, check if the response file was generated.
e.g.
rem Delete any existing files before running the AbaConnect command line
if NOT EXIST "x:\test_export.xml" del /Q "x:\test_export.xml"
if NOT EXIST "x:\test_response.xml" del /Q "x:\test_response.xml"

abaconnectexportconsole.exe "/USRAdministrator" "/PWeli" "-M7777" "-aADRE" "-P625" "-datamodeXML" "-version2007.10" "-acidContacts" "-mapidAbaDefault" "-responseYES" "-responsefilex:\test_response.xml" "-exportfilex:\test_export.xml"

if NOT EXIST "x:\test_export.xml" echo **** UNSUCCESSFUL : No export file found ! ****
if NOT EXIST "x:\test_response.xml" echo **** UNSUCCESSFUL : No response file found ! ****
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
11  Where can I find the required parameters to export an AbaConnect interface via command line ? 
COMMAND LINE  The simplest way to obtain the required export parameters for an interface is to export the required interface via the ABACUS Menu in Prog 625. The main parameters necessary for the command line are contained within the XML Export file header. Note : The AbaConnect Documentation exported from ABACUS V2010 also has examples of the header information and command line parameters  

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
12  How can I tell if an AbaConnect interface is accessible via WebServices ? 
WEB SERVICES  A list of AbaConnect WebServices is available on the ABACUS Homepage under :

Downloads - Treiber/Tools - AbaConnect (http://www.abacus.ch/downloads-page/abaconnect/webservices)

This page contains the WSDL's for the released AbaConnect WebServices. Many of the XML AbaConnect interfaces are also available as WebService, but if the WSDL for the interface is not listed on the Homepage, then the interface cannot be used via WebServices.
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
13  How can I test if an ABACUS installation supports AbaConnect WebServices ? 
WEB SERVICES  The AbaConnect WebServices are available with a standard ABACUS Network-Server Installation. The AbaConnect WebService communication uses the AbaSioux. A simple tests to see if the connection to the AbaConnect WebServices is available is to use the standard ULC URL. For example on an ABACUS Server computer (with default AbaSioux port 40000) the following URL links can be tested via the Internet Browser :

http://localhost:40000 - this should display the ULC start page

http://localhost:40000/abaconnect/services - this should display a message from AbaConnect
(e.g. Please enable REST support in WEB-INF/conf/axis2.xml and WEB-INF/web.xml)

The same tests can also be extended to test over a network by replacing "localhost" with the ABACUS Server computer name.
e.g. http://<Server-Computer-Name>:40000/abaconnect/services

If an connection error message (for the URL http://<Server-Computer-Name>:40000/abaconnect/services) is displayed in the Internet Browser Not found (404) The requested resource can not be found. then the AbaConnect WebServices are not available. Note : The message "Please enable REST support in WEB-INF/conf/axis2.xml and WEB-INF/web.xml" indicates that the WebService connection is available, but the AbaConnect WebService WSDLs are not available via the URL. AbaConnect WSDLs are available from the ABACUS Homepage.

Hint : The AbaConnect WebService Examples available on the ABACUS Homepage can also be used to test AbaConnect WebService connections. Generally, the Microsoft .NET AbaConnect examples include the compiled executable file in the example ZIP file. Provided the Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 is installed on a computer, these example executable files can be unpacked and run without the need to compile the supplied source code. The Java examples can also be used, but need to be compiled before the program can be executed. The Apache Axis2 V1.1.1 libraries and a JAVA JDK installion is required to compile the AbaConnect JAVA examples. More information about this is contained in the examples.
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
14  How can Apache TCPMon be configured the view and save the SOAP messages ? 
WEB SERVICES  Information about how to configure the Apache TCPMon Utility for use with AbaConnect WebServices is on the ABACUS Homepage under :

AbaConnect_TCPMon_de.pdf (http://www.abacus.ch/fileadmin/zipfiles/abaconnect/documents/AbaConnect_TCPMon_de.pdf)
 

 
No./Category   Question/Answer Back To Top
15  Can the ABACUS AbaEngine WebService be used for exporting data ? 
WEB SERVICES  One of the longest running WebServices in ABACUS is the AbaEngine WebService. The AbaEngine WebService allows AbaReports to be accessed via WebService and can only be used for data export. The AbaEngine WebService IS NOT RELATED to the AbaConnect WebService, but it can sometimes be useful for exporting specific customized ABACUS data via an AbaReport.
Downloads :
The AbaEngine examples demonstrate how an AbaView Report can be started via WebService using the AbaEngine SOAP Interface.
If ABACUS is locally installed Further Information about the AbaEngine WebService is available via the URL :
Note : ABACUS V2016 and higher
As of ABACUS V2016 the AbaEngine SOAP WebService is not activated by default. The following entries are required in the ABACUS System configuration files ("\abac\system\abasystem.properties") to activate the AbaEngine SOAP WebService :
abaengine.soap.reports = true (true if AbaReports are being used)
abaengine.soap.views = true (true if AbaViews are being used)

Please Note : The following WebReports functionality via the Browser is no longer possible as of ABACUS V2014
AbaView Reports must be saved as WebReports (*.avx) if they are to be used with the AbaEngine WebService The *.avx must be present in the x:\abac\kd\abav\web folder in order to be read via WebService AbaView Reports can also be started via the Browser with the URL :