December 2, 2009
- Veryant, the COBOL and Java technology innovator, announced that i-Modulas Software BV has used Veryant's isCOBOL Application Platform Suite (APS) to preserve its COBOL assets and reduce COBOL licensing costs, provide the modern technology advantages of Java, insure cross-platform portability and Web-enablement, and offer enhanced graphical user interface (GUI) capabilities.
These improvements were necessary for i-Modulas, which provides specialized ERP software for rental companies and project-based organizations, to continue growing. Without them, customers might turn to other ERP software vendors.
The company found that only Veryant's isCOBOL APS was able to help retain i-Modulas' valuable legacy COBOL applications and offer its customers the modern technology advantages of Java on multiple platforms.
Using a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model, i-Modulas offers an Internet-based software rental option to insure that complex organizations with multiple offices, warehouses, and other facilities can provide the right information for hundreds of employees to work together simultaneously.
Originally using character-based COBOL, the software was platform independent, which was important for i-Modulas to appeal to a greater share of the ERP software market. However, most options tied the software to a specific platform and the company did not want to trade platform independence for modern technology.
As an interim step, the company used AcuCOBOL-GT to offer Web integration, but because the AcuCOBOL Thin Client model only supported Windows, i-Modulas had to rely upon an outdated terminal emulator to run on Linux. It was costly for the firm to put extra staff resources into maintaining different platform deployment options. Using AcuCOBOL-GT also restricted i-Modulas to using dated CGI technology for Web programming. i-Modulas found CGI programs to be slow and resource intensive because they require significant memory and processing resources to execute.
When i-Modulas learned that isCOBOL APS could support a character-based interface and meet all of its needs, the company knew it had found the right solution. isCOBOL technology enabled i-Modulas to quickly move from using cumbersome CGI programs to 'next generation' Java Servlets for its Web programming needs.
"By using isCOBOL APS, we can offer SaaS without having to install proprietary software and platform-specific client software," explained René
van Oevelen, software architect at i-Modulas Software BV. "In addition, Veryant lets us update our existing applications and development products very affordably."
The i-Modulas application consists of 200 online COBOL programs and 200 batch COBOL programs, with 200 files, 500 screens, and 1.8 million lines of code. The applications support functions such as planning, sales, rental, accounting/finance, buying, equipment maintenance, shop management, and customer service, in a variety of industries, including financial services, retail, construction, equipment manufacturing, and more.
The company easily completed the migration to isCOBOL and had its first users online within a year. Today, all users are on the Java technology.
i-Modulas reached its goals of cross-platform application portability, Java technology, an improved GUI, and now enjoys easier installation of software. Van Oevelen said the Veryant team has been very helpful and very responsive.
to read the i-Modulas case study.