Automated Refactoring

Our Automated Refactoring solution delivers modern, Cloud-enabled applications and databases that are functionally equivalent to their legacy counterparts. This reduces cost, allows for deeper integration, and enables customisation to meet business requirements. This solution is great for moving legacy mainframe applications to Cloud-native languages such as Java and C#, and legacy databases to relational models.

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Discussing the 2022 Mainframe Modernisation Report

60 minutes

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Why modernise?


Scarcity of domain expertise

Developers and database administrators who understand legacy mainframe technology are reaching retirement age, resulting in a steadily diminishing talent pool. As this shortage grows, the costs and risks of relying on their languages and databases will continue to rise.

Limited flexibility

Companies are now leveraging modern environments and practices such as DevOps and the Cloud, while mainframes and the languages and databases that support them were not designed for modern IT, often resulting in difficult integrations and limited flexibility.

Exorbitant costs

Mainframes cost as much as 4,500 per cent more to operate than equivalent cloud counterparts, a figure compounded by a scarcity of development resources and rising licensing and maintenance fees for ancillary mainframe utilities, applications, and databases. 

Automated Refactoring


To thrive in today's digital world, organisations must develop a mastery of rapid response, effortless course correction, and unencumbered agility in the face of competitive innovation. This is particularly difficult for large firms with rich heritage because of their reliance on inflexible IT systems such as legacy mainframes. These mission-critical systems are increasingly expensive to run and contain unique intellectual property and business processes developed over decades, rendering them difficult to replace by traditional means.

Automated refactoring with Advanced provides a turnkey modernisation of your procedural codebase (or 4GL) to object-oriented Java or C# and your non-relational database to a relational model; deployed to the Cloud or in open systems on premises.

Once the legacy applications and databases are refactored, developers can extend application functionality for Cloud optimisation using standard DevOps tools and CI/CD concepts that simply aren’t available for legacy mainframe applications. Precious business logic from the legacy system is preserved, while levels of optimisation can be applied to deliver efficiencies and business benefits such as elasticity, granular service definition, and easy integration with Cloud-native services.

Automated Refactoring with Advanced unlocks a whole new world of quality and scalability from automated testing to quality assurance, and the ability to leverage containerised deployments and orchestration with Docker and Kubernetes.

Many code transformation solutions create structurally similar programs in the target language, but require additional re-engineering efforts to yield desired results. Our solution is completely automated, removing the risk associated with the post-refactoring tweaks that go into other offerings.

Refactoring a 4GL or procedural language to object-oriented Java or C# presents many challenges. As such, Advanced's automated refactoring process was designed with the following requirements in mind:

  • Refactored applications must remain functionally equivalent to their original counterparts
  • Refactored applications must be easily maintainable, attain SonarQube A ratings, and follow object-oriented concepts and paradigms
  • Refactored applications should perform as well as, or better than, the original applications
  • Refactored applications should be cloud-ready and delivered using a standard DevOps toolchain and best practices

Automated Refactoring is available for most languages, databases, and platforms, including IBM z/OS, OpenVMS, and VME.

Over 35 years of mainframe modernisation experience

More than 500 successful modernisation projects completed

Over 2.5 billion lines of code refactored through automation

Intelligent Modernisation, Unparalleled Experience


Additional resources to help you modernise



The New York Times: COBOL to Java

Advanced's Automated Refactoring solution enabled The New York Times to completely migrate their core IT system to an AWS platform.

Read case study





Desjardins General Insurance Group

This Automated Refactoring project completely migrated Desjardins' systems from an MVS/IDMS platform to a new Windows/Oracle platform.

Read case study





2022 Mainframe Modernisation Report

Exploring the impact of the new era of digitalisation and change on the current state of legacy systems and organisations' modernisation plans.

Read report



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7 Oct 2022 by Rob Anderson, Vice President of Marketing and Product, Advanced

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31 Aug 2022 by Rob Anderson, Vice President of Marketing and Product, Advanced

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19 Aug 2022 by Rob Anderson, Vice President of Marketing and Product, Advanced

News & Opinions

BLOG // 13-02-2024

How DevOps is influencing mainframe modernisation strategies

by Tim Jones, Managing Director - Application Modernisation

How DevOps is influencing mainframe modernisation strategies