This blog is for Mainframe Modernization professionals to discuss and share perspectives, point of views and best practices around key trending topics. Discover the ART and science of mainframe modernization.

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Tools: The accelerators to your modernization journey [Part 6/6]

 As mentioned in an earlier blog in the series, our 'people+software' approach is a critical success factor for mainframe renewal. Automation, leveraging tools and accelerators is of utmost importance for speed and faster value realization. Our tooling approach focuses on 3 important aspects:
  • It should enable insights in addition to providing data
  • It should be non-intrusive
  • It should significantly reduce SME dependency
Our knowledge curation platform which is a key component of knowledge discovery has adopted these three key aspects of the approach. Some of our clients prefer the knowledge discovery to be done within mainframe as they are not comfortable moving the mainframe components outside the mainframe boundary. The platform, therefore has been designed to be able to work within and outside mainframe boundary. The platform is built on three components:

Extraction Engine: This component consists of multiple point tools which extracts metadata from various mainframe components which comprises of operations, workload, interface, and code details.

Knowledge Repository: This component stores the knowledge extracted from the mainframe landscape. 

Infosys Modernization Portal: This is our window to the knowledge repository which can consume information from the repository and can present it in a meaningful way.


In simple terms, the extraction engine is like the sensory organs, Knowledge Repository is the brain and the Infosys Modernization Portal is like the eyes and ears of the solution. We take an "onion-peel" approach towards knowledge discovery. We start from the portfolio and gradually unearth knowledge from the subsequent layers. However it does not stop us to start at any layer. It also provides us flexibility to use a part or the entire solution based on the context of the client. Recently this solution has helped us create an accurate inventory while creating a rehosting solution for a No. 1 food mail order catalog company in the United States. For an electric utility company, we have used this solution to list all tape and disk datasets as well as a list of all active online volumes. We were able to discover this knowledge without any SME dependency. This has helped us accurately estimate and develop a credible business case.

Apart from knowledge curation, we have standardized tool sets across all the three solution levers of our mainframe modernization solution:
                2. ToolSet.png

Some of the most notable ones are our optimization tool kit which can not only identify the high CPU consuming resources but can also identify the anti-patterns which leads to such in-efficiencies and high CPU consumption. The SMF Log analytics tool from the optimization kit can extract and present meaningful insights from mainframe SMF logs. We have leveraged our optimization tool kit for a US based managed health care company and have significantly reduced mainframe operations cost. Infosys DevOps platform accelerates deployment of changes that helps optimize the mainframe operations. Our robust home-grown migration and testing tools validates the migration and significantly reduces the risk of migration. We also have minimally invasive rehosting solutions that minimizes migration costs and overall TCO for our clients.

Hope you enjoyed this series of blogs explaining how non-disruptive mainframe modernization is possible and the key factors of success. We touched upon 3 strategies one can choose from to modernize mainframe - accelerate, renew and transform concluding with the last post in theisseries about the tool that can help accelerate the journey. We would be happy to hear your thoughts around these topics and experiences from your modernization initiatives. Stay tuned for more.

Blog co-authored by:
Rajib Deb and Sanjay Mohan, Infosys

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