Delivering a Holistic Strategy for Seamless Migration to a Newer, Robust API Compiler


Exceptional programs that utilize fewer resources boost productivity by leveraging hardware advances without large scale changes. Locating technical defects and facilitating the migration process to the IBM C compiler from a now obsolete SAS C compiler was the solution sought by a leading global financial services company for their API systems. Coforge leveraged its expertise and knowledge in the area of Mainframe compiler migration to successfully help the client meet this transition. By ensuring seamless, smooth, and productivity boosting migration that exploits resources across multiple platforms, offering advanced optimization and compiler technologies, we created a common code base for quicker, seamless porting of applications from one platform to another.

About the Client

A financial services company, the client is a global provider of investment processing, investment management, and investment operations solutions. The company provides products and services to institutions, private banks, investment advisors, investment managers, and private clients.

Business Challenge

The client sought to migrate its existing mainframe API code built and compiled using SAS/C 5.5 compiler, as SAS had ceased support for the C compiler version and chose to move to the IBN C compiler. The client was seeking a partner who could solve multiple issues that would crop up during the migration as the compiler vendor was different. These differences were available in the compiler documentation only to some extent. Certain variances had no clearly defined parameters and were difficult to resolve. Flawless migration from SAS C compiler to IBM C compiler for the API code while managing technical challenges during the migration was need of the hour

Coforge engaged with the client to resolve multiple issues encountered in migrating from one Mainframe based compiler to another. Numerous technical challenges were faced during the migration process including:

  • Syntactical differences between IBM C and SAS/C compiler for array declaration
  • Differences in CICS statement executions
  • #pragma option usage in IBM C as opposed to no such parallel in SAS C compiler
  • Calling of Assembly and PL/I module from C module for inter-language communication
  • DLL Loading differences
  • Language Dependent Macro (for example CENTRY, CEXIT, and CRAB)
  • Changes for ADABAS functions for database calls
  • ‘__remote and __local’ keywords used for Pointer to function

The client also depended on these APIs to downstream apps across the core platform. The entire integrity, stability, and accuracy of the platform was threatened.

Our Solution

With a sophisticated optimization routine to improve code to better exploit the existing system architecture, Coforge enabled flawless operations. Meeting debugging and maintenance issues head on, the team at Coforge ensured that performance was not compromised. Choosing the right compiler for the client saved them the need for tuning and extracting a top performing compiler without losing out on platform portability.

Coforge proposed this solution based on the need for a new C compiler system (IBM C compiler) and the fact that the client already had a license for the IBM C compiler, thus saving money, time, and effort. Ensuring the compiler runs with verified logical steps and offers additional tools to squeeze better performance from the architecture, a comprehensive and holistic strategy was provided, which saved on extra cost for compiler purchase and migrated all the products.

The strategy followed was a successive one, with small products being migrated and rolled out successfully, paving the way for seamlessly migrating larger, complex products. The client was able to now use a supported version of the C compiler, lowering chances for inaccuracies in production. Value-adds included making APIs an IBM language environment compliant product on the Mainframe.

The client was able to exploit existing systems and tap into new technologies, maximizing application value and contributing to developer productivity. Performance tuned libraries and language constructs following the migration led to measurable differences in application runtime performance.

Delivering More Value

  • More Analysis: In the absence of prior documentation for the migration process, advanced technological skills and innovation were harnessed using an analytic approach that supported evidence based solutions for efficient, smooth, and seamless transition.
  • More Savings: By migrating to a platform they already had a license for, the client was able to cut down on expenses while contributing to productivity and rising profit margins.
  • More Expertise: Solutions for migration problems that had no previous precedence were proposed, formulated, effectively implemented, evaluated, and administered. The client also benefited from a method of approximations, where small solutions paved the way for bigger, more complex ones, leading to a high success rate of implemented processes.
  • More Accessibility: Providing a scalable, robust and easy to replicate solution, facilitated the migration process and delivered prompt and accurate intervention and evidence-based services
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