Displaying items by tag: automation

TSRI KICKS OFF DAY 1 OF THE CONFERENCE AT CAESAR'S PALACE IN LAS VEGAS

How does your organization take advantage of today’s new tools, service integrations, and enhanced user experiences in your applications? 

Navigating this evolving landscape of emerging technologies can be overwhelming without trusted insights into the technologies and integration strategies that are right for your business.

52 Gartner experts, 50+ vendors, and 2000+ peers gather this week at The Gartner Application Innovation & Business Solutions Summit in Las Vegas, May 14-16, to navigate these opportunities and challenges head-on. Attendees can get practical advice and strategic insights on topics including generative AI, intelligent apps, low-code, platform engineering, and attracting great software engineering talent, among other critical topics. 

For many organizations, aging mission-critical systems limit their ability to leverage new technology, and often, they struggle to retain or replace their SMEs. TSRI is at the forefront of application modernization, delivering truly modern transformations for our clients’ mission-critical systems using automation for efficiency and accuracy. We work with customers and partners to target a modern language, platform, and resilient, scalable infrastructure that offers our customers a new foundation for business innovation without losing any of the core functionality they rely on today. This provides a seamless transition into their modernized system with no business disruption.

TSRI chose to sponsor this event to showcase how our industry-leading software modernization solutions can help transform your business applications into flexible, secure, and cost-effective cloud-native systems, ready to implement all your best ideas. We are committed to removing the limits of legacy technology and setting customers on a path to truly dream big with their application innovation.

BOOTH: #216 @Caesar's Palace, May 14-16

NETWORKING RECEPTION: May 14 & 15 from 5:30 PM to 7 PM 
Visit the booth on Tuesday or Wednesday evening to play your favorite Atari games modernized to a digital console!  

THEATER SESSION: May 16, 10 AM, in Theater 1 
"Modernizing Legacy Tech for the Cloud Era with Automation"
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Find Us at Booth #216

We look forward to meeting fellow industry leaders in the application and software sector to forge meaningful connections, share experiences, and explore how our solutions can drive impactful transformation together.

Come stop by our booth during the show to chat with our team of experts, or swing by during the Networking Reception Tuesday and Wednesday to play some Atari games with a chance to win one of our fabulous prizes.

LET'S TOUCH BASE
If you’re at the Gartner Application Innovation & Business Solutions Summit too, let's meet up! Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to set up a time to discuss transforming your software foundation and enabling your future of innovation. 

During the conference, you can find the TSRI team members at Booth #216 to discuss our software modernization solutions and how they can help transform your software from legacy to future-proof applications. As experts in enabling technology readiness for the cloud and other modern architectures, we revolutionize software modernization using our formal methods model AI (FMM) with high levels of automation 99.9X% to modernize your applications fast and accurately. The results enable customers to move off the mainframe, often lowering their Total Cost of Ownership by 90% and more in some cases through software advocacy and refactoring.

Let us explore how our proven approach to automated modernization can turn your challenges into opportunities and exceed critical market demands. We're excited to connect with you at this event and explore how we can support your next transformation!

Read Our Case Studies 

THEATER SESSION: Modernizing Legacy Tech for the Cloud Era with Automation"
Thursday, May 16, 10 AM, Theater 1

In this insightful talk, TSRI's Vice President of Product Development and Service Delivery, Scott Pickett, attendees will learn strategies for effectively addressing decades-old legacy technical debt using modern tools and methodologies. Scott will share insights on transforming applications into modern languages suitable for the cloud environment and how TSRI’s approach helps effectively streamline documentation, testing, and integration processes.

Don't miss out on this session to learn practical guidance for navigating complex transformation challenges and driving innovation within your organization!

Proven by decades of results. Prove it for yourself. 
For decades, TSRI clients have been discovering a dramatically faster, more accurate, and less expensive automated modernization process. We’ve earned a place as the go-to resource for enterprise corporations, government, military, healthcare,
and more. Now prove it for yourself. Find out how the proprietary TSRI modernization process delivers future-ready, cloud-based code in any modern language in a fraction of the time. 

Learn About Our Technology 
Get Started on Your Modernization Journey Today!

Published in Events
Wednesday, 13 September 2023 11:34

Oracle CloudWorld: September 18-21

 

The TSRI team is excited to be a Showcase Sponsor at this year’s Oracle CloudWorld from September 18th through 21st in Las Vegas, Nevada. Join us for a demo session of our automated modernization process, and a fascinating featured session with other industry leaders.

At CloudWorld, you’ll discover the insights you need for success on your most complex software modernization projects and cloud deployment challenges. The conference will be full of opportunities to meet and learn from industry leaders and technology experts to discover what’s new and what’s next for Oracle Cloud Infrastructure when it comes to databases, applications, and much, much more.

 

SEPTEMBER 20th SESSION
See 99.9X% Automation in Action
Get a look at how TSRI modernizes a mainframe application modernization from COBOL to Java running on Oracle Cloud at the Modernize Mainframe Applications to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure with Confidence session on Wednesday, September 20th at 2:10pm PDT. Scott Pickett, VP of Product Development and Service Delivery, will demonstrate how it’s done with 99.9X% automation. You'll see how TSRI transforms COBOL, CICS, CA IDEAL, JCL, Pl/1, PL/SQL, and more, to functionally equivalent Java and C# .Net Core with migration to cloud, cloud-hybrid, or modern on-premises environments.

 

FEATURED SESSION ON SEPTEMBER 21st
Modernizing Mainframe Workloads to OCI
Find out how TSRI clients have achieved 80-90% TCO savings on mainframe modernization. Join Oracle and TSRI on Thursday, September 21st at 9:05 am PDT for a Featured Session on Mainframe Modernization with Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. René Wagner and a panel of Oracle partners will share strategies and patterns for modernizing and refactoring mainframe applications to modern environements, including hybrid and Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI). You’ll learn options and strategies that can cut costs and mitigate risks associated with mainframe migration to the cloud.

 

Reserve a Personal Genius Bar Session
To receive a more personalized walkthrough, check out our demo session, Cloud for Mission-Critical: Mainframe Offload. Register on the Oracle Events App to join René Wagner at the Genius Bar in the Hub on Wednesday, September 20th from 5-6pm. While you can walk up to the Genius Bar during the session, spots are limited to four attendees at one time per session, so we recommend that you pre-register in advance to avoid missing out.

 

Stop by Booth #48
Any time during the conference, the TSRI team will be ready and eager to share industry knowledge, successful modernization strategies, and opportunities for partnership. We look forward to seeing you in person at Booth #48 to ensure that every software modernization is done professionally, with full accuracy, assured functional equivalence, and in a fraction of the time.

 

Meet Us at the Conference!
SCHEDULE NOW


In a fraction of the time, lower cost, and with no business interruption, TSRI’s JANUS Studio® automates the transformation and refactoring of software applications to cloud environments. Our industry-leading reputation for success includes mission-critical mainframe applications for military, government, and private sector organizations.

 

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Proven by decades of results. Prove it for yourself. 
For decades, TSRI clients have been discovering a dramatically faster, more accurate, and less expensive automated modernization process. We’ve earned a place as the go-to resource for enterprise corporations, government, military, healthcare, and more. Now prove it for yourself. Find out how the proprietary TSRI modernization process delivers future-ready, cloud-based code in any modern language in a fraction of the time. 

See Case Studies 
Learn About Our Technology 
Get Started on Your Modernization Journey Today!

Published in Events
Monday, 24 July 2023 12:35

Highlights From MITS 2023

 

AN AIR FORCE FOCUS ON AUTOMATION

Face to Face with Our Air Force Counterparts

This year’s AFCEA MITS conference in Montgomery, Alabama, was a fantastic experience. The TSRI team was delighted to spend quality time with this community of long-time partners, the U.S. Air Force, and other military leaders. It gave us an in-person opportunity to deepen established relationships and help strengthen our understanding of the Air Force’s critical goals and initiatives. The panel sessions and discussions reflected the impressive intelligence, passion, and dedication of the Air Force and our industry colleagues.

This year we were proud to sponsor the conference to help advance the military’s mission and the education of the future technology workforce through AFCEA’s yearly charity golf tournament and President’s Breakfast.

 

Conversations on the Green

The golf tournament and breakfast held the day before the conference offered an excellent opportunity to build new relationships and strengthen existing ones in a fun setting. René Wagner, our Director of Business Development, says, “It was very exciting to talk with our partners about how they're feeling about the industry and about our common goal of helping the Air Force.”

Our sponsorship helped AFCEA raise over $127,000 for schools and universities through the Montgomery AFCEA Chapter Education Foundation. The money will go to promote IT integration in classrooms across Alabama’s River Region by providing students and teachers with scholarships, grants, equipment, and awards to support technical workforce development.

 

Insights from the Main Event

With around 700 attendees, the 2023 MITS conference provided a focused forum for in-depth discussions with the Air Force about their critical IT goals. This year’s conference theme was the “Unwavering Drive for Automation,” a natural fit for TSRI’s automated architecture-driven software application modernization and refactoring solution. Our approach consistently achieves over 99.9% automation, meeting and exceeding Air Force typical expectations of 60% or 70% automation, at minimum. In addition to the time and money TSRI’s high automation solution can save organizations, our iterative refactoring process improves code quality and increases applications' speed, security, readability, and scalability.

Throughout the conference, we heard new ideas for business, mission, and IT automation, and we shared how, at TSRI, we leverage automation at every step of the software modernization journey. In conversations with our partners and USAF customers about the continued success of TSRI’s application modernization solution and process, we gained valuable insight into what sets our approach apart. Beyond our technical solution, these conversations highlighted the importance of our comprehensive planning, diligent expectation setting, and expertise in post-modernization operational change management.

 

“I’ve been living and breathing the Air Force logistics modernization strategy and struggle for over a decade.” Says Greg Tadlock, TSRI’s Vice President of Sales, “At MITS, what I learned was continued reinforcement that we're on the right track. That what we're offering customers is the right solution.“

 

Taking Center Stage

“The single greatest moment at the event, for me,” says Greg, “was the full auditorium as René introduced TSRI at the beginning of the automation panel. You can only imagine…for a small company like TSRI, it felt like a big moment.” The panel discussion addressed some of the central questions of automation, such as which business and technical processes make sense to automate and what level of automation is feasible to run critical operations more efficiently for the Air Force and other military organizations. The panel discussed familiar and innovative automation tools and methodologies, including new AI technologies.

 

Hot Topics: Platform Selection and Cyber-Resilience

In addition to automation and AI, another major topic of conversation was cloud infrastructure and platform migration for military systems. To achieve the high levels of security, performance, and maintainability required of military IT solutions, our Air Force customers need to identify and configure the optimal environments for their systems. Paul Saladna, an Enterprise Architect at NTT Data, responsible for the Air Force’s large and very successful SBSS ILS-S project, speaks to this question in our recent webinar. Do you go with a particular cloud platform based on your systems language or database type? Or do you choose by the server or operating system? In many cases, it’s not a simple, formulaic decision.

As more Air Force and other military systems are migrated to the cloud, several considerations exist in the choice and configuration of their target environments. Cyber-resilience is near the top of the list, as is scalability and the ease of system maintenance. There’s not one “if-System-A-then-Target-B” answer, which made our conversations at MITS all the more interesting and informative. With the Air Force tackling several new initiatives, now is the perfect time to engage in these critical discussions. TSRI consults with our partners and customers to help select cloud environments and configure optimal architectures for each application.

START YOUR MODERNIZATION JOURNEY WITH A TSRI CONSULTATION.

 

Many thanks to the Air Force and AFCEA for another great MITS!

Greg summed up our feelings about the MITS event: "It was an honor to participate with such an influential group of folks at the Air Force. It was great to get a chance to understand their needs and truly introduce TSRI’s full capabilities.” We look forward to next year and the rewarding initiatives and breakthroughs we’ll tackle with our partners and military colleagues until then!

 

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Proven by decades of results. Prove it for yourself. 
For decades, TSRI clients have been discovering a dramatically faster, more accurate, and less expensive automated modernization process. We’ve earned a place as the go-to resource for enterprise corporations, government, military, healthcare, and more. Now prove it for yourself. Find out how the proprietary TSRI modernization process delivers future-ready, cloud-based code in any modern language in a fraction of the time. 

See Case Studies 
Learn About Our Technology 
Get Started on Your Modernization Journey Today!

Published in Events
Friday, 19 May 2023 16:23

Let's Meet at MITS!

TEEING OFF FOR AUTOMATION AT THIS YEAR'S AFCEA EVENT IN MONTGOMERY

“Unwavering Drive For Automation.” That’s the theme for this year’s AFCEA MITS (Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, Montgomery Information Technology Summit.) And we couldn’t agree more.

It’s no wonder TSRI is a Platinum Sponsor of MITS this year; we’re always innovating to enable greater automation. So if you’re attending MITS, we would love a chance to get together. And don’t miss our Automation Panel Discussion on May 24 moderated by Matt Roberts, AFLCMC/GB DAFBOT. We’ll also be at the Industry/Government Exchange Breakfast Reception on Monday morning. Look for us at either place if you’re going.

To further support our commitment to innovation through teamwork with the Air Force, TSRI is proud to be a MITS Golf Sponsor this year. If you’re going to the tournament, let’s meet up on the fairway. Just drop Greg Tadlock or René Wagner a line and we can coordinate a face-to-face meeting.

 

ON THE FAIRWAY OR IN THE CONFERENCE ROOMS.
Let's Meet at MITS.

TSRI Automation Panel Discussion
May 24, 08:50 – 09:50 CT

TSRI Golf Sponsorship
Contact Greg Tadlock or René Wagner to connect on the fairway.

 

On a Mission to Automation
Our long-standing relationship with the US Air Force began in 1995 with the Defense and Finance Accounting Services (DFAS) contract management system, MOCAS, and in our 10 Air Force projects since we’ve consistently aligned our efforts to support their vision of a force “Powered by Airmen, Fueled by Innovation,” modernizing some of the Air Force’s most mission critical systems.

From our modernization of the challenging Air Force AFLCMC SBSS ILS-S—known as “The Beast”— to our current work modernizing the 4-million line Stock Control System, with our partner Definitive Logic, we’ve consistently delivered success. Some of our successful past projects modernizing Air Force systems include:

—  Weather monitoring—Weather Data Analysis Capability (WDAC)

—   Tactical and strategic multiservice satellite management—MILSTAR (Military Strategic & Tactical Relay

—  Reporting systems for equipment maintenance data—The Reliability & Maintainability Information System (REMIS)

—   Tracking combat capability and impending parts problems—Weapon System Management Information System (WSMIS),

—  Financial cost tracking—WSCRS Weapons System Cost Retrieval System

 

Let's Touch Base
If you’re going to be at the MITS conference, let’s meet at the session, on the greens, or in-between! Drop us a line at iThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and let’s set up a time to talk about transforming the impossible into the everyday.

 

 

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Proven by decades of results. Prove it for yourself. 
For decades, TSRI clients have been discovering a dramatically faster, more accurate, and less expensive automated modernization process. We’ve earned a place as the go-to resource for enterprise corporations, government, military, healthcare, and more. Now prove it for yourself. Find out how the proprietary TSRI modernization process delivers future-ready, cloud-based code in any modern language in a fraction of the time. 

See Case Studies 
Learn About Our Technology 
Get Started on Your Modernization Journey Today!

Published in Events
Wednesday, 30 March 2022 14:17

Ada to C++ - GDAIS NUWC WCS

TSRI was contracted by General Dynamics (GDAIS) to automatically transform the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Submarine Weapon Control System (WCS). TSRI used its JANUS Studio® automated toolset to transform and refactor WCS Ada code to functionally equivalent C++ code.

  • Customer & Integrator: Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) & General Dynamics
  • Source & Target Language: Ada to C++
  • Lines of Code: 2,449,466 (Classified)
  • Duration:  12 months

 

Published in Case-Studies
Wednesday, 30 March 2022 13:57

Assembly to Java - IRS Tax Processing System

TSRI, in partnership with Hewlett-Packard, rapidly adapted its automated JANUS Studio® transformation engine to be ALC-compatible so they could conduct an ALC-to-Java prototype modernization effort for the US IRS. The high levels of automation enabled quick transformation and refactoring iteration, which rapidly and systematically discovered and isolated defects. Allowing TSRI engineers to quickly adjust the automated conversion rules, and quickly regenerate the system at higher output quatlity.

Customer: Hewlett-Packard and The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

Source & Target Language: Assembly to Java

Lines of Code: 8,000

Duration:  1 Month

Services: Automated Code Transformation, Automated Refactoring, Integration and Testing Support, Defect Isolation, Transformation Blueprints ®, Application Blueprints ® 

 

 

Published in Case-Studies

Downtime, lack of agility, and vendor lock may keep organizations from modernizing their aging legacy applications, but plenty of other roadblocks, whether technical or psychological, can also stand in the way from an organization from undertaking a high-stakes modernization effort. For example:

  • One TSRI defense client had been using the same COBOL mainframe applications for nearly 50 years. The agency expected that migrating away from this mission-critical system would require downtime that could have led to data loss, mission interruptions, and catastrophic security failures.
     
  • Another client, a large European bank, used mainframe applications that could have served them well for another decade or longer. However, upstart digital competitors were running circles around this financial powerhouse. They needed more agility.
     
  • Another defense client wanted to migrate its applications to Amazon Web Services but worried about limited options. Their mainframe used a proprietary architecture and applications, and the agency was locked into long-term contracts that would have prevented them from undergoing a transformation. This agency needed assurances a transformation could be done—and done properly.

 

 

Understanding and Overcoming the Misconceptions and Fears


If you’re a change maker in your organization — whether on the business or IT side — you probably see the need to modernize your applications. Throughout our 26 years of modernizing critical applications, we have found that many perceived obstacles are actually misconceptions, fears, uncertainties, or doubts that arise due to a lack of information.

Here are the most common misconceptions and obstacles, and how we help our clients get around them:

 

Obstacle 1: “It Will Cost Too Much!”
Cost almost always rises to the top of the list. From an OpEx perspective, once a modernized system goes into production, your organization can achieve savings quickly and dramatically. One client reduced its IT operations costs from over $1 million to tens of thousands of dollars—per month. While not every transformation will yield remarkable savings like that, your organization will recoup its modernization costs quickly.

In addition, because an automated transformation is much less likely to produce the inevitable errors produced by humans—we are, after all, only human—that means far lower instances of cost overruns.

 

Obstacle 2: System Downtime
Many organizations see time to market and system downtime as major concerns. Undertaking an automated modernization will be the fastest, most reliable alternative nearly all the time. As opposed to rewriting all or most of the code in the target language by hand, a fully automated transformation can take months—if not years—off the timeframe to bring the modernized application into production. Such automated modernizations also can give you the option to run your applications in the legacy and modernized environments side by side for testing, and then flip the switch to put the new environment into production with very little, if any, downtime—which means no disruption to the business.

 

Obstacle 3: “If it Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix it!”
Organizations may also face the dilemma of making change if there isn’t a need to change. Such attitudes can be embedded into an organization’s culture, and convincing top management to commit to large expenditures where much of the beauty lies under the hood can be a heavy lift. However, external issues may force a modernization—oftentimes when it’s too late.

Most enterprise companies and government agencies running mainframes historically had armies of programmers that maintained their systems. As the decades rolled by, however, most of those programmers retired from the workforce while computer science programs shifted to educating on modern, object-oriented languages like C# or Java. As one client discovered for PL/1, a much more obscure mainframe language, the agency that ran the application found only a single person in the entire country capable of supporting the application. That was clearly not a sustainable solution.

Even more challenging, the language or platform itself may have survived past its reasonable lifespan. TSRI has modernized applications originally housed on mainframes built by Wang. The company ceased to exist in the 1990s and its subsequent iterations no longer supported a version of COBOL proprietary to its systems. At that point, modernization wasn’t a luxury—it was a necessity.

 

Obstacle 4: The Knowledge Gap
Finally, when a legacy system has been in service for 40, 50, or even 60 years, the original developers will doubtfully still be a part of the organization. Institutional knowledge can be passed down, but most IT leaders won’t have a clear view of what their systems can do. The transformation engine that takes on an automated modernization can also generate documentation that provides a detailed blueprint of an application today and how it will function in the modern target language. Those insights will help the engineers who maintain the application understand how a modernization can achieve their business goals.

 

Face the Fear and Reap Big Rewards!

Undertaking a drastic change like modernizing an application comes with risks and likely some trepidation, but it also creates opportunities that might never have been possible by continuing to maintain a legacy system. Completion of a successful transformation will not only save your organization money and give you better access to development resources, it will make your organization more agile and provide you with modern tools to better serve your end users.

 

TSRI is Here for You

As a leading provider of software modernization services, TSRI enables technology readiness for the cloud and other modern architecture environments. We bring software applications into the future quickly, accurately, and efficiently with low risk and minimal business disruption, accomplishing in months what would otherwise take years.

See Case Studies

Learn About Our Technology

Get Started on your Modernization Journey Today!

Published in Best Practices
Tuesday, 12 October 2021 16:47

Video: Effective Testing During Modernizations

When you use automation to modernize applications that you’ve been running for years, there should be no functional change between the legacy code you’ve migrated from and the target language you’ve transformed to. That dramatically simplifies testing.

As Scott Pickett explains in the latest episode of our “Migrating Your Mainframe to the Cloud” video series, you can create quick test scripts to confirm that the business logic has stayed exactly the same. From there, knowing that the automated modernization has created that like-for-like codebase in the new target language means that you simply need to confirm that the data baselines you set are in sync and you’re off to the races!

As Scott does note, TSRI’s solution does inject telemetry into the modernization so you will have logs to help with those code and data comparisons, which makes the full testing process that much simpler.

 

 

 

Originally aired live on May 18, 2021.

 

Be sure to view our other videos in this series:

Videos 1 & 2: “Setting Project Scope” and “Setting Up Development Sandboxes”

Video 3: “Selecting Cloud Vendors and Your Target Language”

Video 4: “Using Automation to Quickly and Accurately Move to a Multi-Tier Environment”

Video 5: “Modernizing Using Layered Architectures”

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TSRI is Here for You 

As a leading provider of software modernization services, TSRI enables technology readiness for the cloud and other modern architecture environments. We bring software applications into the future quickly, accurately, and efficiently with low risk and minimal business disruption, accomplishing in months what would otherwise take years. 

See Case Studies 

Learn About Our Technology 

Get Started on Your Modernization Journey Today! 

Published in Cloud

Using automation to modernize mainframe applications will bring a codebase to today’s common coding standards and architectures. But in many cases, modernization to an application’s functional equivalent isn’t always enough. Organizations can do more to make their modern code more efficient and readable. By building refactoring phases into their modernization projects, organizations can eliminate the Pandora’s box of dead or non-functional code that many developers don’t want to open, especially if it contains elements that just don’t work.

Using TSRI’s automated refactoring engine, remediation was complete in an hour.

What is Refactoring and How is it Used?

Refactoring, by definition, is an iterative process that automatically identifies and remediates pattern-based issues throughout a modernized application’s codebase. For example, unreferenced variables or unnecessary redundant snippets could exist throughout the application. This scan, known as dead/redundant code refactoring, will find repetitions of any of this unusable code to flag, then remove it from the codebase. One of TSRI’s current projects found 25,000 instances of a similar issue that would have required 15 minutes of manual remediation per instance—not including the inevitable introduction of human error that would require further remediation. The number of development hours would take more than a year for a single developer to complete.

Using TSRI’s automated refactoring engine, however, remediation was complete in an hour.

Calling refactoring its own post-modernization phase is, in some ways, misleading. Refactoring typically occurs all the way through an automated mainframe transformation. As an example, in a typical COBOL or PL/1 mainframe modernization, TSRI would refactor the code from a monolithic application to a multi-tier application, with Java or C# handling back-end logic, a relational database layer through a Database Access Object (DAO) layer, and the user interface (screens) modernized in a web-based format. Believe it or not, many legacy applications still run on 3270 green-screens or other terminals, like in the graphic below.

Once the automated modernization of the legacy application is complete, the application has become a functionally equivalent, like-for-like system. However, any deprecated code, functions that may have never worked as planned, or routines that were written but never implemented will still exist. A process written in perhaps 1981—or even 1961—may have taken far more code to execute than a simple microservice could handle today.

Situations like this are where refactoring becomes indispensable.

 

Where to begin?

Before a formal refactoring process can begin, it’s important to understand your goals and objectives, such as performance, quality, cybersecurity, and maintainability. This will typically mean multiple workshops to define which areas of the modernized codebase need attention and the best candidates for refactoring, based upon the defined goals. These refactorings will either be semi-automated (fully automated with some human input) or custom written (based upon feedback from code scanners or subject-matter experts.)

The refactoring workshops can reveal many different candidates for refactoring:

  • Maintainability: By removing or remediating bugs, dead or orphaned code, or any other anomalies the codebase can be reduced by as much as one third while pointing developers in the direction of any bugs in need of remediation.
  •  
  • Readability: Renaming obscure functions or variables for a modern developer to fit within naming conventions that are both understandable and within the context of the code’s functionality.
  •  
  • Security: Third-party tools such as Fortify and CAST can be utilized to find vulnerabilities, but once found they need to be remediated through creation of refactoring rules.
  •  
  • Performance: Adding reusable microservices or RESTful endpoints to connect to other applications in the cloud can greatly improve the efficiency of the application, as can functionality that enables multiple services to run in parallel rather than sequentially.

 

What are the Challenges?

  • Challenge 1: One reason refactoring must be an iterative process is that some functionality can change with each pass. Occasionally, those changes will introduce bugs to the application. However, each automated iteration will go though regression testing, then refactored again to remediate those bugs prior to the application returning to a production environment.
  •  
  • Challenge 2: The legacy architecture itself may pose challenges. On a mainframe, if a COBOL application needs to access data, it will call on the entire database and cycle through until it finds the records it needs. Within a mainframe architecture this can be done quickly. But if a cloud-based application needs to call a single data record out of millions or billions from halfway across the world (on cloud servers), the round trip of checking each record becomes far less efficient—and, in turn, slower. By refactoring the database, the calls can go directly to the relevant records and ignore everything else that exists in the database.
  •  
  • Challenge 3: Not every modernization and refactoring exercise meets an organization’s quality requirements. For example, the codebase for a platform that runs military defense systems is not just complex, it’s mission critical. Armed forces will set a minimum quality standard that any transformation must meet. Oftentimes these standards can only be achieved through refactoring. A third-party tool like SonarQube in conjunction with an automated toolset like TSRI’s JANUS Studio® can be utilized to discover and point to solutions for refactoring to reach and exceed the required quality gate.
  •  

In conclusion, while an automated modernization will quickly and accurately transform legacy mainframe applications to a modern, functionally equivalent, cloud-based or hybrid architecture, refactoring will make the application durable and reliable into the future.

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TSRI is Here for You

As a leading provider of software modernization services, TSRI enables technology readiness for the cloud and other modern architecture environments. We bring software applications into the future quickly, accurately, and efficiently with low risk and minimal business disruption, accomplishing in months what would otherwise take years.

See Case Studies
Learn About Our Technology
Get started on your modernization journey today!

Published in Education
Monday, 27 January 2020 14:19

The Business Case for Automated Modernization

Perhaps you’ve seen your competition pull ahead. Maybe your customers have become frustrated with their experience as they interact with your systems. Possibly, you’ve even experienced a security breach. You know your legacy systems need to move into the 21st century, and perhaps you’re struggling to decide how to move forward. Whether you want to face it or not, now is the time to take a hard look at modernizing your digital infrastructure.

According to salesforce.com, “while there may be a multitude of reasons for a business to undergo digital transformation, it mostly boils down to survival. Digital transformation can be risky and expensive, so it’s often a necessity for businesses that want to survive and outlast the ones that failed to evolve.”

And then there’s the expense: Daniel Newman at The Future of Work suggests that as much as 80 percent of an IT budget can be spent on maintenance. Modernizing legacy systems—even incrementally—can help a company see its capabilities leap forward by using the cloud to integrate automation into standard business processes. John Brandon at techradar.com suggests that “some of the most disruptive technologies—such as machine learning, voice bots like Amazon Alexa, and artificial intelligence—are helping to automate mundane tasks and improve how a business runs.”

These technologies run on data. In this new era of computing, the businesses that truly succeed will be the ones that put an emphasis on their data. If they haven’t already, legacy systems with limitations on their data will fall behind, especially when introducing machine learning and AI into the mix. At the same time, the data and infrastructure that have kept older systems going for so long can’t just be switched off, and freezing the systems as teams write and develop its replacement will push customers away.

Modernization effectively overcomes these risks to your organization by opening up the possibilities that an older codebase wasn't designed to handle.

“Taking inventory of what still works and what doesn’t allows companies to identify which processes are no longer relevant,” writes Newman. “Only applications deemed critical to business are then modernized; the others are simply retired, saving time and money on maintenance.”

When you decide to replace or reconfigure your legacy system, you can decide between any of these modernization options:

New Application Development. Replicate your legacy system by writing entirely new code. Your team will manually develop your new system using current coding practices with modern interfaces, and support for current technologies. This option is very expensive option, and it’s generally only usable to set a baseline for future development. You’ll incur expenses that can be as high as the original project, risk levels are similar to a typical “waterfall” project, and there are high likelihoods of time and budget overruns.

Extend/Surround. Many organizations currently opt for this method. The development teams or consultants encapsulate the legacy system in coding containers that provide APIs and tack-on integration with other systems. While the solution may work, you will have a patchwork of code, often in multiple programming languages, that gradually increases technical debt and incurs added maintenance costs. While this situation defers replacement, it will likely be costly in the long run.

COTS/SaaS. Both common off-the-shelf (COTS) solutions or cloud-based SaaS systems enable you to migrate to a less expensive and more modern architecture, but costs can easily escalate. The new system will require customization and ongoing licensing costs. Such a migration could create ripple effects on other systems and cause you to incur other costs from conforming to a completely new platform with unknown attributes.

Automated Modernization. A careful translation of code by a team of expert external engineers creates a new, modern application based upon the logic and behavior of the original. The process will include varying degrees of automation, which increases accuracy while decreasing costs. Modernization will likely incur the least risk and expense of any of these options.

Replacement of aging systems is becoming increasingly urgent, and as programmers of many of these older systems retire, replacement costs will continue to rise. An automated modernization program will likely yield the least expensive and most flexible alternative for stable, long-term performance.

 

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Standish Group, “Modernization: Clearing a Pathway to Success,” 2010

Published in Best Practices
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