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Issue Date: March 2008

Software AG extends SOA into mainframe environments

27 March 2008

Software AG has introduced the webMethods Application Modernisation Suite as a comprehensive product suite for revitalising and extending mainframe applications.
Available versions include a Web Edition for low-risk, non-invasive Web enablement; a new SQL Edition for standards-based mainframe data integration; and a new SOA Edition for service enablement, governance, and deployment of mainframe assets within an enterprise-scale SOA.
Enterprises can use the webMethods Application Modernisation Suite to redeploy existing mainframe functionality and data to meet new business requirements more easily and quickly. As it embraces a more holistic and universal approach addressing a broader variety of mainframe-related requirements, enterprises can deploy the webMethods Application Modernisation Suite as their total solution for application modernisation.
The webMethods Application Modernisation Suite is further differentiated by its inclusion of the webMethods ESB and CentraSite as key components of the SOA Edition. The addition of an industry-leading enterprise service bus (ESB) and a top-ranked service registry/repository/lifecycle governance solution provides enterprises with a more comprehensive solution for enabling, managing and governing an SOA utilising mainframe assets. This is in stark contrast with competitive offerings that simply seek to service enable existing mainframe applications.
"For too long, enterprises have been left to address their application modernisation requirements tactically with stopgap solutions. With mainframe systems here to stay, we believe that a more strategic approach is required," said Dr. Peter Kürpick, president and chief product officer for the webMethods division and member of the Software AG Executive Board. "While Web enablement and data integration address significant requirements, long-term business agility can only be achieved when an organisation can leverage its mainframe assets within an enterprise SOA. This ensures that critical functionality is readily accessible across all of the core business processes of the enterprise."
Application modernisation emerges as an enterprise priority
According to a recent global survey, CIOs rank 'legacy modernisation, upgrade or enhancement' as their fourth highest IT priority for 2008. The survey was conducted by Gartner and reflects the buying decisions of 1500 CIOs worldwide.
Software AG has identified a number of factors driving this widespread interest in application modernisation. For CIOs tasked with doing more with less, spending millions to replicate existing functionality cannot be justified when these core transactional systems continue to outpace rivals in terms of performance, scalability, reliability and security. Furthermore, there is the additional risk associated with 'rip and replace'. This is driving organisations to adopt 'leverage and extend' strategies focused on modernising existing applications as an alternative to wholesale replacement.
The webMethods Application Modernisation Suite
The webMethods Application Modernisation Suite is the industry's most complete and easiest-to-use solution for application modernisation. The current release includes new products, significantly updated and improved Software AG tools, and recently acquired webMethods assets. It uniquely brings together within a single product suite a low-risk, non-invasive Web enablement solution, a standards-based mainframe data integration solution, and technologies for enterprise-scale SOA enablement, governance, lifecycle management and deployment.
By replacing a variety of disparate, non-integrated tools with a single solution, enterprises can streamline and accelerate their deployment of new solutions, simplify training, minimise maintenance requirements, and more fully-leverage existing enterprise functionality. Recognising the predominant role that SOA will play in application modernisation going forward, it also focuses on helping users go beyond simple service enablement to embrace a lifecycle approach to service management.
The webMethods Application Modernisation Suite is available as follows:
Web Edition: builds upon the proven performance of webMethods ApplinX to transform 'green screen' applications into user-friendly Web interfaces.
SQL Edition: based on newly introduced webMethods ConnecX adapters, provides users with a unified, 360° realtime view of enterprise data from within nearly any enterprise application or reporting tool. It provides realtime, SQL-based access and a unified view of one or more relational and non-relational data sources including Adabas, VSAM, C-ISAM, DISAM, RMS, DataFlex, Powerflex, Oracle, DB2, SQL Server, Rdb, Sybase and Informix.
SOA Edition: lays the foundation for a true SOA by helping customers manage services across their lifecycle for optimal performance and maximum return. This new product bundle includes webMethods ApplinX (service enablement of application screen flows), webMethods EntireX (service enablement of programming logic - see below), the webMethods ESB (service orchestration and runtime deployment), and CentraSite (service governance and lifecycle management). Together, they work to support the creation of high-level business services; provide guidance and infrastructure for governing SOA assets to streamline and simplify re-use; maximise quality of service (QoS) and availability through orchestration and run-time policy enforcement, and help to ensure that business systems consistently meet service level agreements (SLAs).
As a key component of the SOA Edition, webMethods EntireX v8.0, features significant upgrades. New features include out-of-the-box integration with the webMethods ESB, support for large CICS message sizes, enhanced COBOL support, reliable and asynchronous service calls, and simplified configuration. As a result, developers can use EntireX to quickly and easily encapsulate programming logic into ready-to-use .NET, J2EE or Web services without changes to the underlying source code.
"Many enterprises have traditionally taken a piecemeal or reactive approach to application modernisation. However, this is changing with the increased importance of application modernisation as a key contributor to business process improvement," said Joe Gentry, senior vice president and CTO for Enterprise Transaction Systems at Software AG. "What is ultimately needed is a more systematic, enterprise strategy for extending the boundaries of SOA and business process management to fully-encompass the mainframe environment. In this context, organisations can eliminate existing silos and create a level playing field in which both new and old applications can interact freely and fully. This is the need that the webMethods Application Modernisation Suite targets."
The webMethods Application Modernisation Suite is available immediately with pricing available from an authorised Software AG sales representative. Additional information on the webMethods Application Modernisation Suite can be found at www.SoftwareAG.com/AppMod.


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