Integrating Legacy Modernization with New Development

When it becomes apparent that legacy code must be replaced, modernization is often the best possible strategy. With code modernization it is possible to refine the original code and bring it up to modern practices, as well as integrating it with existing software. One of the problems with modernization, however, is that critical applications tend to have thousands of lines of code and a manual rewrite is often impossible. To re-create the software requires a project of similar magnitude to the original development; to leave most of the code intact as a “black box” and build around it results in numerous security issues and inefficiencies, as well as inability to leverage emerging technologies.

 modernization project involving code conversion offers numerous advantages. To ensure that the base logic of the original system is contained in the new code base, syntactic modelling provides the best results. A syntactic model based on the ASTM (Abstract Syntax Tree Metamodel) standard can derive the underlying logic of the original code, making it possible to easily convert between different languages. This logic can be examined for potential faults and redundancies; the model itself can then be used to create a standard object model based on standards such as UML, which provides a developmental basis for creating new software with identical function.

Performing this type of conversion requires automation, and an experienced team such as that provided by TSRI. An automated solution can quickly and efficiently develop a final product that is up to standard, easily integrated with enterprise software, and has logic which has been clarified so that it is easily transformed and easily understood.

TSRI has a long experience in handling large projects and employing its JANUS Studio® engine to automate a reliable process for updating and modernizing code. JANUS Studio® has been employed in over 150 critical code transformation and jobs over a past decade all of which have been successful.

But, how does modernization fit into the existing development environment? Employing a TSRI solution avoids the inevitable disruption of employing the existing IT team to perform the conversion. An in-house effort draws talent from projects and demands special skills and experience that might not be available. The IT Department does need to be involved in the effort, however, acting as a partner in understanding and modelling the final product, and integrating it into the enterprise software environment. This partnership ensures that the new software is immediately ready and can be maintained and extended to meet future needs.

Within the development environment, modeling provides a strong basis for clean code development, using standards designed for movement between different methodologies. With a base set of object models, there are innumerable tools available for further developing the software solution. Once models have been developed, you can move to other languages or coding practices as they emerge in future. Tools available for working with models range from simple IDE approaches using Eclipse plug-ins, to solutions such as Rational Rose from IBM.

While TSRI can provide an initial code conversion, the approach itself provides ample basis for forward engineering to meet the needs of the future. For best results, it is advisable to develop expertise in model-based engineering within the IT department. Use of a modeling approach to further develop your modernized software is not essential, but it is preferred. Model-based solutions provide a good starting point for creation of error-free code, and better insight into the functions of the software and its integration into the technology of the firm.

Automated code modernization based upon modeling creates a solution which eliminates the painful issues of manual development and conversion. Manual conversion is error prone, subject to the schedule slippages, likely creep in scope as additional features are required--and considerably more expensive. A manual approach can also add to technical debt by creating workarounds and fast-fix solutions that are typical of projects undertaken in a hurry. Automation provides the ideal solution to meet both immediate modernization requirements and the future development of the system.

 Please feel free to reach us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 425-284-2770 with questions.

Check out our Automation Advantages, as well as our Security Benefits & Contact Us for more information!