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What Does Watchpoint Mean?

In SAP, a watchpoint is a conditional breakpoint that is only defined in the ABAP Debugger. It is one of the runtime utility components provided to debug SAP application programs and serves as an indicator to the ABAP runtime processor to interrupt further program processing from the specified point or relation. Dynamic in nature, watchpoints help application developers monitor the contents of specified variables and the change of their values associated during runtime processing.


Techopedia Explains Watchpoint

Because a watchpoint creates a clone of the specified object, it can negatively impact performance and memory, especially with large size data objects like internal tables. Watchpoints are ideal for variables of less size that are active during runtime, but only for a short duration.

Watchpoints may be created while Debugger is on, with the help of the pushbutton, "Create watchpoint."

Watchpoint features are as follows:

  • Unlike breakpoints,watchpoints are not activated until the specified field content is changed.
  • Unlike dynamic breakpoints, all watchpoints are user specific and do not prevent other users from running related application programs.
  • A watchpoint may be set as local or global. The only validity of a local watchpoint is the specified program, whereas a global watchpoint is valid throughout the specified program and other associated programs it calls during runtime.
  • Logical conditions may be specified in watchpoints, unlike breakpoints, and may set a maximum of five per session. A watchpoint is provided with a relational operator and comparison field to specify the conditions for interrupting.
  • Like Breakpoint, watchpoints may be modified and deleted as needed.
  • Watchpoints created in New ABAP Debugger are not valid and may not be used after switching to classic debugger, and vice versa.
  • Once a watchpoint is reached, a yellow arrow is specified on the program statement and an alert is given as "watchpoint is reached along with watchpoint variable."

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.