Mainframe COBOL to Java, C# & Cloud

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Key Features for Successful COBOL to Java / C# Conversion

COBOL migration projects are generally guided by three core objectives: Minimizing expenses, establishing a system that is easily maintainable by contemporary developers, and achieving optimal performance.

To meet these objectives, SoftwareMining has identified and implemented the following essential translation features for successful COBOL to Java / C# projects:

    Procedure Division Copy-books Translation

    Minimizing Generated Data Access Objects (DAOs)

    A proficient COBOL conversion tool should be aware of previously generated DAOs from COBOL's 01 level definitions and reuse them when possible. This approach reduces the number of generated classes and improves maintenance and application load times.

    Remove unreferenced data-structures and variables

    A reliable COBOL conversion tool will remove dead code, leading to smaller application sizes and simplifying application maintenance.

    Remove un-reachable program statements

    Essential for improving application maintenance in the COBOL conversion tool process.

    Reduce GO TO statements

    Java and C# languages do not support COBOL's GO TO statements. A top COBOL to Java/C# conversion tool must make every effort to remove or significantly reduce them, enhancing the translated code's structure.
    On average, SoftwareMining Converter removes approximately 70% of the GOTO Statements.

    Precision vs Performance considerations

    The COBOL conversion tool should balance between COBOL’s numeric variables and Java's BigDecimal data types (or C# Decimal data type), avoiding unnecessary performance losses.

    COBOL Pointers Support

    Ideally, in the long run, all COBOL Pointers would be replaced by references to "objects". However, until that happens, supporting COBOL pointers within the translated Java and C# system enables the translated application to be moved into production swiftly.

    Limiting COBOL Emulation

    Some of the translated Data Access Objects require COBOL emulation features, including REDEFINES, OCCURS-DEPENDING, COMPUTATIONALs, and POINTERS. The translator should identify when these features are necessary. When they are not required, the translator should generate straightforward classes that bypass the dependency on the emulation.reby enhancing the runtime performance of the converted Java & C# system

    VSAM / ISAM to Object-Relational-Model (ORM).

    A crucial step in the COBOL Converter tool process is enhancing the code's readability for COBOL developers who are trained in Java and C#. Implementing an Object-Relational Model (ORM) not only improves code legibility for COBOL developers trained in modern languages like Java and C#, but it is also a concept that is familiar to most software developers.

    Migration of KSDS/Indexed file structures to SQL Database

    Utilizing an SQL database has become a standard practice in modern application development with the Cobol Converter. This adoption simplifies maintenance and amplifies integration opportunities with other systems. For more information on data migration requirements when using the Cobol Converter, visit: Data Migration Requirements.

    Embedded SQL (EXEC SQL) - convert from COBOL to Java / C# dialect

    SoftwareMining's Cobol Converter is designed to adapt SQL statements in COBOL code to align with modern programming practices, such as those in Java and C#. For instance, it handles COBOL-specific constructs like NULL-INDICATORS and SQL-Codes, and seamlessly translates them into a format that is compatible with Java and C# conventions. This capability enables the newly converted system to be run and tested against the existing database, ensuring a smooth transition during the migration process. For a comprehensive solution that bridges the gap between legacy COBOL applications and today’s programming landscape, turn to the Cobol Converter.

    Embedded SQL (EXEC SQL) - convert DB2 utility calls to native Java / C# functions

    Sometimes COBOL applications make calls to a DB2 database to access functions that are not readily available in the COBOL environment. For example, a COBOL application might use the folloowing DB2 call to obtain the current date in a specific format that is not natively supported by COBOL:

    By using the Cobol Converter, these statements can be translated into calls to native Java or C# utilities, resulting in significant runtime performance improvements.

    Binary compatibility with legacy data files (including sequential files)

    Essential for a COBOL conversion tool, the converted Java and C# application must be able to read and write SEQUENTIAL files generated by mainframes. This capability ensures seamless continuity and integration between the new application and existing mainframe data.

    Support for Multiple Programs in Single File

    At SoftwareMining, we have encountered COBOL files containing up to 20 PROCEDURE DIVISIONs. In the translation to Java or C#, we employ a combination of inner classes to maintain the same level of access to data items.

    EBCDIC to ASCII conversion - even at runtime

    This makes it easier to switch over from mainframe while also allowing for integration of translated Java application with other mainframe COBOL systems.

    JCL to Unix / Windows Shell Scripts

    Most extensive COBOL applications come with a substantial set of JCL (Job Control Language) scripts, and migrating these scripts is a crucial component of the overall conversion project. The SoftwareMining Translation tool accommodates this need by supporting the translation of 90% of the most commonly used JCL statements, facilitating a comprehensive and efficient migration process.

    CICS, MQ, BMS support

    SoftwareMining supports the translation of 90% of the most commonly used CICS statements. Additionally, our runtime libraries come with no associated license costs. For further information, see CICS Support.

    Download COBOL to Java / C# Conversion Tool  (Release date: 2024-02-01)

    View translation examples:    COBOL to Java    COBOL to C#   CICS/BMS statements

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