Mantrax was engaged to modernize mission-critical applications and infrastructure for a business management company in the financial services industry.
The client had a monolithic application built using a PHP framework that was abandoned years ago. It was not maintained by anyone and the developer who built this system had abandoned them to seek a full-time opportunity elsewhere.
To make things worse, they were running off a decades old database technology that was not supported and was very poorly designed.
These types of applications could abruptly stop working if any of the system administrators updated the operating system or even applied a patch without understanding the consequences. Even worse, this software system did not receive any security updates for years and was vulnerable to various cyber-attacks.
With such legacy systems, there is a lot of resistance to change. It was natural for our client to feel anxious about making drastic changes to existing systems. There was a fear of a scenario where the legacy application modernization won’t go smoothly and their business processes would come to a screeching halt.
One ideal approach would have been to go through a complete redesign of the application including re-architecting the database. However, given the tremendous amount of stress our client was enduring, and budget considerations, we took the “good solution today” approach.
Decide on the new technology stack which was best suited for their business
Create a list of all database objects (tables, stored procedures, user-defined functions) which needed to be migrated
Have a senior developer work on this project – one who knew the PHP framework as well as the new framework chosen for this application (Angular / Express JS)
Rebuild the application one screen at a time (to get a realistic estimate of time and effort remaining). In parallel, migrate the database objects to a newer supported platform
Maintain the current production application to ensure business continuity