Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Why migrate from legacy systems?

I was tempted by a colleague into posting an answer to a question on LinkedIn. I thought it might be useful to reproduce that here for a potentially different audience ...

Q: (from LinkedIn)
"Why is it important to migrate from legacy systems? Is there anyone who can simplify the migration process?"

A: (my answer, there are others too)

Why migrate from legacy systems? There are two aspects to consider - protection and opportunity.



On the protection side, it is a balance of risks - the future maintainability risk of staying with an older system against the inevitable pains of migration. The old saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" is relevant, but the catch is that the further your legacy system falls behind current practice, when it finally does break the cost of the eventual fix is likely to be much greater.

On the opportunity side, legacy systems may well be constrained in terms of performance, capabaility, features, etc. A more modern system may thus provide significant business benefits from better performance, more powerful capabilities, or more relevant features.

In the end, if you are using a different system (e.g. legacy) to most of your industry colleagues/competitors, then you are either operating at an advantage (e.g. cost, established solution, ...) or disadvantage (e.g. cost, performance, capability, ...). Make sure you know which.

As to who can help - it depends on what migration you need (from which system? migrate the application or recreate the functionaility? etc.)

Readers of this blog will know that NAG provides services, training and consulting to support migration of application software (especially science & engineering, or involving parallel computing - multicore, supercomputers, etc).

You can also follow NAG on LinkedIn by joining our group.

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