What is AWS Mainframe Modernization? - Mainframe Modernization

What is AWS Mainframe Modernization?

AWS Mainframe Modernization helps you modernize your mainframe applications to AWS managed runtime environments. It provides tools and resources to help you plan and implement migration and modernization. You can analyze your existing mainframe applications, develop or update them using COBOL or PL/I, and implement an automated pipeline for continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) of the applications. You can choose between automated refactoring and replatorming patterns, depending on your clients' needs. If you are a consultant helping a client migrate their mainframe workloads, you can use Mainframe Modernization tools for all phases of the migration and modernization journey, from initial planning to post-migration cloud operations.

You can use Mainframe Modernization to help you efficiently create and manage the runtime environment on AWS for your mainframe applications, as well as to manage and monitor your modernized applications.

Note

Before you start your mainframe modernization project, we recommend that you learn about the AWS Migration Acceleration Program (MAP) for Mainframe or contact AWS mainframe specialists to learn about the required steps for modernizing a mainframe application.

The features and use cases of Mainframe Modernization support an evolutionary modernization approach, which provides short-term wins by improving agility and plenty of opportunities to optimize and innovate later on. For more information, see Modernization approach.

Features of Mainframe Modernization

Mainframe Modernization features support the following use cases:

  • Assess: Mainframe Modernization offers application intelligence, knowledge, and analysis for migration teams and developers to better understand large application portfolios. The assessment capability can help you assess, scope, and plan a migration and modernization project. It highlights application dependencies, complexities and facilitates the definition of the modernization strategy, including business and technical evaluations.

  • Refactor: Mainframe Modernization offers both automated and manual refactoring capabilities to accelerate the modernization of mainframe and legacy assets. Powered by Blu Age, you can use refactoring to convert legacy application programming languages, to create macroservices or microservices, and to modernize user interfaces (UIs) and application software stacks. It can convert languages such as COBOL, PL/1, NATURAL, RPG/400, and COBOL/400 into agile Java services and Web frameworks. It relies on fully automated refactoring, preserving the investment in business functions while expediting the reliable transition to newer languages, data stores, and frameworks. For more information, see AWS Mainframe Modernization Automated Refactor.

  • Replatform: With Mainframe Modernization, you can replatform COBOL and PL/I applications onto the mainframe compatible managed runtime in the cloud. Powered by Micro Focus Enterprise solution, this project approach is about porting the application where much of the application source code is recompiled without changes. The managed runtime provides the necessary capabilities to execute both online transactions and batch jobs. It preserves the investment in the language and code, while modernizing the underlying infrastructure for on- demand resources, elastic scaling, and DevOps best practices. For more information, see AWS Mainframe Modernization Replatform.

  • Developer IDE: Mainframe Modernization offers an on-demand integrated development environment (IDE) so developers can write code quicker with smart editing and debugging, instant code compilation, and unit testing. You can also use the IDE to develop and enhance enterprise applications running on the Mainframe Modernization Managed Runtime. The Developer IDE is available on-demand for both the refactor and replatform patterns.

  • Managed runtime: The Mainframe Modernization managed execution environment continually monitors your clusters to keep enterprise workloads running with self-healing compute and automated scaling. The managed runtime is built for business-critical enterprise applications requiring high availability, reliability, and security. It is available on-demand for both the refactor and replatform patterns. The managed runtime includes extensive automation and managed infrastructure resources which you can operate via the AWS console, the AWS Command Line Interface (CLI), and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). This removes the burden and undifferentiated heavy-lifting of managing a complex infrastructure. It allows you to spend time and focus on innovating and building new capabilities.

    The following table summarizes the benefits of a managed runtime versus a runtime deployment on-premises or on Amazon EC2.

    Mainframe Modernization managed runtime Runtime deployment on-premises or on Amazon EC2

    Administration

    Native AWS console administration

    Included

    Not available

    Native AWS API and CLI administration

    Included

    Not available

    Managed resources

    Managed runtime compute

    Included

    Not available

    Managed runtime storage

    Included

    Not available

    Managed runtime caching

    Included

    Not available

    Managed runtime internal database

    Included

    Not available

    Automation

    Built in high availability across Availability Zones

    Included

    Manual

    Deployment infrastructure resources

    Included

    Manual

    Automatic deployment of application resources

    Included

    Manual

    Built in application versioning

    Included

    Manual

    Built in dataset management

    Included

    Manual

    Batch runtime management

    Included

    Manual

    Built in scale up and scale out

    Included

    Manual

    Automatic installation of middleware and dependencies

    Included

    Manual

    Automatic patching of middleware and operating system

    Included

    Manual

    Automatic configuration of runtime components

    Included

    Manual

    Automation for deploying globally in minutes

    Included

    Manual

    Built in best practice security configuration

    Included

    Manual

    Automatic self-healing in case of server or AZ disruption

    Included

    Manual

    Built in packaged CI/CD pipeline

    Included

    Manual

    Integrations

    Native integration for logging with CloudWatch logs

    Included

    Not available

    Native integration for monitoring with CloudWatch

    Included

    Not available

    Native integration for security with IAM and Cognito

    Included

    Not available

    Native integration for billing and licensing

    Included

    Not available

    Native integration with CloudFormation

    Included

    Not available

    Pre-packaged integrations with databases and third party solutions

    Included

    Manual

    Middleware

    Runtime middleware software

    Included

    Included

    Runtime middleware license

    Included

    Not included

    Runtime middleware and resources pay-as-you-go pricing

    Included

    Not available

    Runtime middleware and resources commitment pricing

    Included

    Manual

  • Continuous integration and delivery (CI/CD): CI/CD introduces automation to boost agility and release velocity across every stage of the development and test pipeline. Mainframe Modernization helps application development teams deliver code changes more frequently and reliably, which accelerates migration speed, increases quality, and helps reduce time-to-market for releasing new business functions. CI/CD pipelines are available for both the refactor and replatform patterns.

Patterns

The Automated Refactoring pattern, powered by Blu Age, is focused on accelerating modernization by converting the complete legacy application stack and its data layer into a modern Java-based application while preserving functional equivalence. During this automated transformation, it creates a multi-tier application with an Angular-based front-end, an API-enabled Java backend and a data layer accessing modern data stores. The refactoring process provides equivalent functionality to the legacy stack to increase project automation resulting in speed, quality, and lower cost for achieving business benefits quicker. For more information, see AWS Mainframe Modernization Automated Refactor.

The Replatforming pattern, powered by Micro Focus Enterprise suite, is focused on preserving the application language, code, and artifacts in order to minimize the impact to the application assets and teams. It helps customers maintain the application knowledge and skills. While the application changes are limited, this pattern also facilitates a modernization of the infrastructure and the processes. The infrastructure is changed to a modern cloud-based managed service while the processes are changed to follow best practices for application development and IT operations. For more information, see AWS Mainframe Modernization Replatform.

How to get started with Mainframe Modernization

Try it! We offer tutorials and sample applications to help you get a sense of what Mainframe Modernization offers. Choose either the Tutorial: Managed Runtime for Blu Age or the Tutorial: Managed Runtime for Micro Focus for a complete, step-by-step tutorial. If you are interested in automated refactoring, check out the Blu Age tools at BluInsights. You can also set up AppStream 2.0 to access the Blu Age Developer IDE, or the Micro Focus Enterprise Analyzer and Micro Focus Enterprise Developer tools.

The tutorials and sample applications only give you a sense of what Mainframe Modernization provides. When you are ready to start a modernization project, see Modernization approach for details about the stages and tasks of a modernization project.

In addition to BluInsights for automated refactoring, you can use the following AWS services with Mainframe Modernization.

  • Amazon RDS for hosting your migrated databases.

  • Amazon S3 for storing application binaries and definition files.

  • Amazon FSx or Amazon EFS for storing application data.

  • Amazon AppStream for access to the Micro Focus Enterprise Analyzer and Micro Focus Enterprise Developer tools.

  • AWS CloudFormation for the automated DevOps pipeline that you can use to set up CI/CD for your migrated applications.

  • AWS Migration Hub

  • AWS DMS for migrating your databases.

Accessing Mainframe Modernization

Currently, you can access Mainframe Modernization through the console at https://console.aws.amazon.com/m2/. For a list of regions where Mainframe Modernization is available, see AWS Mainframe Modernization endpoints and quotas in the Amazon Web Services General Reference.

Are you a first-time Mainframe Modernization user?

If you are a first-time user of Mainframe Modernization, we recommend that you begin by reading the following sections:

Pricing

Mainframe Modernization charges for the usage of instances supporting the managed runtime environments. In addition, Mainframe Modernization offers some tools without additional charges. You are responsible for fees incurred for other AWS services that you use in connection with Mainframe Modernization. AWS will provide 30 days' notice before any pricing changes take effect for use of Mainframe Modernization. For more information, see Mainframe Modernization with AWS.