Typically these become an issue after years of an application’s stable use, where they have had zero upgrade effort applied as they “just work”. These applications also tend to be business critical, such as stock control, sales processing or HR / CRM related, and belong to Business Units rather than IT itself.
This “Technical Debt” surfaces when there is an OS platform change, whether that be a server or client side OS upgrade or feature update. The most common compatibility issue is legacy components, although the deprecation of some OS features can also impact on usability. Older Java components are also prevalent challenges, with the latest Java releases looking to remove any historical versions or limit their use under security protocols. The alternatives, paying for Oracle legacy support for older versions, or maintaining a known security issue, are not seen as desirable. So what can you do when retirement of that application is just not an option today?
We take a stepped approach to assist our customers, starting with the fastest results and lowest costs.
We undertake a high level investigation to check sure that the application actually does have an otherwise unsolvable compatibility issue. If the whole application is restricted due to a single DLL or component we check the effect of upgrading the components rather than the entire application. At the same time we check that there are no install logic restrictions that simply have not been updated to reflect higher build versions. This approach quickly and simply fixes 30% of the application compatibility issues we are asked to investigate.
If we cannot remediate then we align the application to the best matched Legacy solution, based on application topology, local federated DB’s with sync requirements, file update cycles, length of service required, plugin security… the list goes on.
At the highest level we offer solutions based on the following approaches, which we independently verify as the best solution for your problem applications. Minimising your solution costs is our goal, using proven technologies and our experience.
From our assessment we will recommend the best match solution of functionality, practicality and cost, to remediate your 16 Bit application challenge. We also bear in mind the expected cadence of change, considering when legacy applications are looking to be retired, replaced or upgraded as this has a bearing on SaaS or perpetual approaches to licensing. We then deliver your application in a working state to your model office and then production environment.
And after ten years of offering Legacy application Solutions we are still winning! We have never been beaten by an application compatibility challenge, and have always been able to demonstrate a working solution to our customers. The oldest applications we have successfully remediated have been from the early 1990’s, and our solutions have been proven in Retail, Education, Pharmaceutical, Nuclear, Agriculture, Transport and Finance.
For information on our Legacy application successes, or to discuss your particular challenge, please reach out to an APPtechnology Director via our contact pages.