ALE (Application Link Enabling) is used to support the construction and operation of distributed applications, through the exchange of data messages ensuring data consistency across loosely coupled SAP applications, using both synchronous and asynchronous communications without the need for a central database.
ALE is comprised of three layers:
- Application services
- Distribution services
- Communication services
ALE helps to:
- Distribute applications across several SAP systems, such that centralized/decentralized functions can operate in the same company area.
- Maintain and distribute master data elements from a central system.
- Maintain and distribute control data objects from a central system with the synchronized configuration data (important to decentralize functions yet keep them integrated).
- Link R/2 and R/3 systems.
- Link SAP and external systems, via IDocs (Intermediate Documents).