Arc's Legacy Project Solved with Azure DevOps and Jira

Peter Danes
Posted by
Peter Danes
August 26, 2021

At Interfuze, we believe in the combination of strategic problem solving, Agile, DevOps and the Cloud to empower businesses with simplicity and better ways of doing things.

So, when Arc Infrastructure engaged us on a project that needed a strong digital solution, we went all in! 

100+ Legacy App hampered migration to newer version of SQL Server 

Arc needed to migrate to a newer version of SQL Server in order to:

  • Set up governance and agility through Azure DevOps 
  • Decommission unused applications
  • Create high level test plans and consistently document all applications

Migration to a new SQL Server and Application server instances are normally relatively straight forward but in this scenario, Arc’s 120 legacy applications - that were setup with configuration hard coded into them - posed a problem. 

To facilitate the migration to the new SQL server, it was necessary to reconfigure each of the applications. This became not such a straightforward server migration as the original authors of the applications had moved on and so had their knowledge of them.

As these legacy applications were important - some of them are used to transfer data internally between systems and to external companies and for internal business notifications, alerts, reporting and analysis - it was not possible to migrate to the new server without them.

When maintenance is not an option 

Arc Infrastructure already identified that any work on the existing apps would carry with it a lot more hidden work due to the original authors no longer being there, resulting in:

  • The need to create test plans to verify that any modification to code would not cause a regression
  • Working out from first principles what the application needed to function correctly, making it challenging to deploy 

These restricted and sometimes completely prevented updating applications to support changes in for business processes and growth. 

The Interfused solution

The Interfuze Custom Solutions team proposed cleaning the 120 applications to make them configurable and support testing, enabling both a safe migration this time around and a simpler approach in the future. 

We focused on deploying the applications end-to-end, and, with incremental changes to reduce risk and impact on the business.

To achieve this, we used powerful tools to implement our solution, including:

  • Azure DevOps to create reproducible steps to deploy applications. This solution meant that future developers can just focus on what they enjoy best - making the code.

  • Atlassian’s Jira to track the progress of the applications through the pipeline of changes needed to be made on each application. This approach also allowed us to record the idiosyncrasies of each of the apps, as we discovered them.

Happiness all around

At Interfuze, we have a goal of making people’s work lives easier, which we believe contributes to their happiness. Our “taming” of Arc’s 100+ apps provided happiness all around for: 

Arc’s IT/Development teams by:

  • Providing them with more confidence to make changes to legacy applications
  • Ensuring there’s less complications and workarounds to make app changes
  • Providing a mechanism to communicate and document information about legacy applications
  • Increasing the team’s capabilities across the business as they are now able to provide all of the above to the business! 

Other Arc teams by:

  • Answering their queries and requests for legacy applications faster! 

The overall Arc business by:

  • Removing significant risk to the company, and allowing Arc to get on top of governance and deployments. 

Want to find out more?

A full case study of how we tamed a 100+ App Legacy with Azure DevOps and Jira is available for viewing. 

For ideas and support on how we can use our interfused skills and services to empower and simplify your business, get in touch!

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