Understanding Buffering in SAP ABAP

What Is Buffering In Sap Abap

Buffering a table improves the performance when accessing the data records contained in the table . The table buffers reside locally on each application server in the system. The data of buffered tables can thus be accessed directly from the buffer of the application server. 1 Jan 2008


Buffering is of great significance in client/server settings, as retrieving data from a table over the network takes significantly more time compared to accessing a locally buffered table. The extent of this delay can vary between 10 and 100 depending on the load on the network.

The performance difference is not as significant in central systems (systems with only one application server) compared to local ones (systems with multiple application servers). However, even in central systems, improvements in buffering beyond what the database system offers can have a noticeable impact on performance by reducing process changes and increasing sophistication.

Buffering in SAP ABAP: Understanding the Concept

If a program accesses the data of a buffered table, the database interface determines whether this data is in the buffer of the application server. If this is the case, the data is read directly from the buffer. If the data is not in the buffer of the application server, the system reads it from the database and loads it into the buffer. The next access to this data can then use the buffer.

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The type of buffering chosen determines which data is stored in the buffer when accessing records. This concept is illustrated in the figure below.

What is Buffering in SAP ABAP

Typically, a buffered table is accessed and stored in the buffer on all application servers. If any changes are made to the data in the table on one server, it is recorded in the log table by the database interface. However, other application servers may still have outdated information in their buffers, which can lead to programs reading obsolete data.


When there is a need for additional space in the buffer because of new information, the system replaces the data that has not been accessed for the longest duration. This displacement of data occurs at specific intervals determined by dynamic buffer accesses, and it happens independently from other processes.

The data is moved out of the buffer by the system when there is insufficient free space or if the access quality is not satisfactory.

What is Table Buffer Resetting in SAP ABAP?

To clear the table buffers on the relevant application servers, simply type $TAB in the command field. This action will cause all data stored in the buffer to become invalid.

Only utilize this command in case there are discrepancies found within the buffer. In larger systems, it may consume a significant amount of time to populate the buffers. During this period, there will be a notable decline in performance.

See also:

Buffering in SAP ABAP refers to the process of storing data from database tables in memory for quicker access. This helps improve system performance by reducing the need for frequent database reads.

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Buffering in tables: What does it mean?

It should be understood that using buffering functionality may or may not result in improved query performance. The effectiveness of buffering depends on various factors such as the size and complexity of the table being buffered and the frequency at which data changes occur externally.

The number of SAP buffers available

There are three types of buffering in SAP ABAP:

1. Resident buffering (100%): When a table is accessed for the first time, all its data is loaded into the table buffer.

2. Generic buffering: In this case, you need to specify a generic key (some of the key fields) in the technical settings of the table in the ABAP Dictionary.

Usage of buffering

Buffering is a crucial concept in SAP ABAP that plays a significant role in managing data flow between devices. It serves as an intermediary storage area that helps regulate the rate of data transfer. When data is being transmitted from one device to another, buffering allows the sender to transmit information at a faster rate while the receiver processes the received data at its own pace.

The buffer acts as a temporary storage space where incoming data packets are stored before they are processed by the receiving device. This enables efficient communication between devices with varying processing speeds or network capabilities. By utilizing buffering, potential bottlenecks and delays can be minimized, ensuring smooth and uninterrupted transmission of data.