Displaying items by tag: roundtripping

Thursday, 05 May 2022 08:42

C to MS-SQL/C - Sempra Energy

Sempra Energy needed to move their Microgrid Control System (MCS) application into a more contemporary environment. The challenge that TSRI and mLogica faced was transforming Sempra Energy's existing Sybase OpenServer platform into a more modern .NET/MS-SQL server environment under strict budget and schedule constraints. The project, which included the modernization, documentation, refactoring, testing, and integration of the application, was successfully concluded on-time and within budget constraints.

Customer: Sempra Energy & mLogica

Source & Target Language: C to MS-SQL/C

Lines of Code: 211,000

Duration: 4 Months

Services: Automated Code Transformation, Automated Refactoring, Round-tripping, Unit Testing, Third Party Code Quality Refactoring, Integration and Testing Support, Transformation Blueprint®, Application Blueprint®



Published in Case-Studies
Wednesday, 30 March 2022 14:04

Java Refactoring TriGeo Network Security

TriGeo Network Security, Inc. awarded a sole-source contract to TSRI for documentation and Refactoring of TriGeo’s primary product offering. This "Roundtripping" process involves taking in a client's code, applying pattern-based refactorings to change and improve the code without changing the functional equivalency of the application.

  • Customer & Integrator: TriGeo Network Security
  • Source & Target Language: Java Refactoring
  • Lines of Code: 370,000
  • Duration:  6 months
  • Services: Legacy “As-Is” Documentation, Automated Refactoring, Additional Customized Refactoring, Final “To-Be” Documentation

Published in Case-Studies
Monday, 13 December 2021 15:42

An Eye-Opening Experience at AWS re:Invent 2021

Modernization’s hot.

If there’s a single takeaway from TSRI’s experience as a sponsor and exhibitor at AWS re:Invent 2021 in Las Vegas, it’s that enterprises and governments alike have their minds on software modernization. If they haven’t started the process of migrating their mainframes and legacy applications to modern architectures to the cloud, then they will be soon actively moving in that direction.

“Virtually every CIO who has a mainframe application is now looking to migrate,” said Scott Pickett, TSRI’s Vice President of Service Operations and Product Delivery, who attended the conference at the end of November.

“Mainframe modernization was the centerpiece of activity for the conference-goers we interfaced with at AWS re:Invent,” echoed Greg Tadlock, TSRI’s Vice President of Sales. While modernization comes in many different flavors—mainframes can be transformed in multiple ways (replatforming, redevelopment, or refactoring, for example.), software modernization is a niche inside the modernization industry. It’s a niche that TSRI has embraced for over two decades and doubled down on earlier this year through validation and selection as a launch partner of the AWS Mainframe Modernization competency. Mainframe application modernization is clearly a movement that has entered the mainstream. “The validation that we made the right decision to be a launch partner with AWS on their Mainframe Modernization competency was confirmed at the re:Invent conference,” Tadlock said.

René Wagner, left, and Scott Pickett at the TSRI booth
René Wagner, left, and Scott Pickett at the TSRI booth

What TSRI Learned

As a company, TSRI has mainly focused on migrating legacy systems to modern languages and architectures, whether on-premises or on the cloud. One thing that surprised the on-site team at re:Invent were the questions about round-tripping. In essence, a round trip is a refactoring of applications originally written in software languages that most modernizations currently target, Java or C#. Both languages have been in use for two decades (or more) themselves, and the technology landscape has changed significantly during that time.

“They came to us specifically because they saw refactoring and the need to take their older Java or C# apps and get them refactored to targeted cloud services, microservices, and containers,” said Kory Caze, TSRI’s Lead Account Executive. It’s a service TSRI has begun to offer, and will certainly become a focus area in the coming year.

The refactoring or transformation of nearly any legacy language to modern languages is certainly one the core values TSRI offers to the modernization market. The capability to modernize more than standard IBM COBOL applications can be useful for, say, an airline that needs to modernize their FORTRAN applications—an opportunity that actually presented itself at the conference this year.

“There are so many software languages and technologies out there, that you can't have a one-size-fits-all solution for,” Kory said. In fact, TSRI’s Director of Business Development, René Wagner, had three different inquiries about doing a transformation from MUMPS, a relatively obscure mainframe language originally developed for healthcare operations—all within 10 minutes of each other! “It's like the most random language,” said René.


The Necessity of AWS Cloud Migration

Knowing that several companies have joined AWS’s Mainframe Modernization competency is reassuring to smaller companies like TSRI. They have a significant role to play in bringing major corporations and public sector agencies to the cloud quickly and efficiently, according to René.

“If you went over to the modernization area [at re:Invent] and you asked Amazon, ‘Who do you use to transform your systems to modernize the mainframe?’” René said, “their answer was, ‘Oh, we have an ecosystem of partners that we utilize to get this work done.’”

Everyone on the TSRI team saw live, in action, that modernization will be important over the next few years. Migration to the cloud, they all said, is not a matter of if, but when.

“That was kind of the feeling that I got,” René said. “Modernization is happening, and these people have bled enough on what they currently have.”


TSRI's re:Invent booth, including a few collectibles.
TSRI's re:Invent booth, including a few collectibles.

The Future of Cloud

While TSRI has begun to focus more of its efforts on cloud migrations, with AWS as a leading platform, the re:Invent conference opened the company’s eyes to plenty of opportunities that the company’s leadership might not have considered even a year or two ago. Being on the floor as a first-time sponsor and having the ability to demonstrate what the company can do, through Application Blueprint® demonstrations, or walking booth visitors through case studies, has opened a lot of doors for the TSRI team.

“The AWS mainframe migration announcement validates the tools, capabilities, and shift that TSRI has undergone, as well as in the industry,” said Scott Pickett, TSRI’s Vice President of Service Operations and Product Delivery.

Next year should be even more interesting.

If you were unable attend AWS re:Invent 2021, you can still access the materials TSRI shared that show what we can do to help your organization modernize to the AWS cloud. Download this information to get started!

TSRI COBOL to Java for AWS case study  

Case Study: Modernizing a Critical ILS-S U.S. Air Force System for AWS


TSRI’s approach to modernizing mainframe technology for AWS


Checklist: Preparing for Cloud Modernization


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 AWS

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.


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