What to do with that pesky COBOL legacy system?
The easy thinking option today appears to suggest that the best thing that you can do with a legacy COBOL system is rewrite or replace it. Of course it’s not that simple as my colleague Derek Britton points out in his latest Blog “When it comes to COBOL, Take Advantage”
How did how one of Germany’s leading public-sector IT services providers, AKDB (Anstalt für Kommunale Datenverarbeitung in Bayern) manage to Modernise?
For AKDB the requirement to change led to them to consider the business value of the 950,000 lines of COBOL, developed over 40 years, delivering a reliable service to 420,000 people every month. From a functional perspective the COBOL applications contained everything required to offer a complete payroll solution. All they needed to do was change the underlying platform delivering the COBOL applications to something “more modern”, to better integrate with their other systems and support the adoption of a modern agile development methodology.
Application Platform Change
After evaluating the options, they chose Enterprise Server for .NET from Micro Focus. With a high level of mainframe compatibility, Enterprise Server for .NET enables customers to reuse fit for purpose COBOL applications by rehosting them to a Microsoft .NET Infrastructure. The rehosted applications can then be modernised using “modern” languages like C# and integrated with other .NET applications using the available Class Libraries.
Bridging the old and the new
As Erna Kraus-Schreieck, Head of HR Solutions, says: “By integrating our COBOL code with new C# code, we can lay the foundation for our next generation of applications while protecting critical HR processes and all of the years of expertise they embody.”
Taking “old wine and putting it in new wineskins”, or as we like to say at Micro Focus “bridging the old and the new”.
Please read the full case study here for more information about this particular case, or if you want to learn more about mainframe IT Modernization options from Micro Focus this webinar detailing the latest release will be of interest.
To conclude: if you are thinking about a rewrite or replace option, remember that option carries a high degree of risk compared to a proven rehosting solution….find me on Twitter if you want to talk more or leave me a comment below….