Dealing with Legacy Systems

No discussion of Business Solutions , or attempts to effect business transformation is complete without taking into consideration the very relevant topic of how to make it easier to deal with legacy systems.

Legacy Systems ? in Year 2015 ?

Why Legacy Systems are still here .

Is your business one of them?
The reason that such " dinosaurs" still exist are :
1. Advantages :
Legacy systems continue to provide a competitive advantage through :

  • a)supporting unique business processes and
  • b)containing invaluable knowledge and historical data.
2. Indisputable Fact.

These legacy systems run the business. Perhaps past customizations have locked the business into a specific software, or version. Replacing these systems comes with considerable cost and risk.They’re locked .

3. It is working and has been working.

Businesses do not want to fix something that " has been working for the past 20 years ". CIOs struggle with the problem of modernizing these systems while keeping their functionality intact

Legacy Applications running on legacy systems still run many businesses . Some still run on software created 20-30 years ago. Because they generally carry a lot of important historical data that is often associated with a company;s core business , they remain difficult to remove .

  • Legacy Systems are not very good at printing .
  • Legacy Systems are not very good at imaging .
  • Legacy systems contain a lot of valuable information, but cannot :
    • Get that data into user's useful applications accurately .
    • Get that data into user's useful applications Fast enough .
    • Get that data into user's useful applications in a cost effective manner.


      Worse , Cannot "
    • Get that data into user's useful applications at all .

Report Mining for Legacy Systems

  • There is a lot of Business Data in Legacy Systems .
  • There is probably a lot of useful historical data in Legacy systems .
  • Forwards documents without delay to each successive phase .
  • Data is very text based

Tools to deal with systems data from Legacy systems Legacy Desktop Report Mining Software - This solves one of the most technical challenging tasks facing organizations : On top of handling Report Mining , Datawatch Monarch also :

  • Is able to automate this on a big scale using Datawatch Automation Server ( Formerly called Datawatch Data Pump )>
  • Is able to combine data from the oldest legacy systems with data from multiple sources ,
  • Is able to perpare and add more data like calculated fields to the collected information .
  • Is able to do Excel-like functions like Sort , Filter , Summarize , and conditional formatting .
  • All manipulations done with the files can be saved as a model file and there is no need to redo this process . When the data changes , all the user needs to do is to open the data file , and then apply the model file .

Imaging and Legacy Systems
Legacy Systems are very text based and do not see or handle images well . And yet , for businesses to be able to move towards better efficiency , what better way than to quickly enable imaging , workflow and ECM applications to be completely integrated into your legacy systems . Onbase has integrated with many systems and these include text based legacy systems .

OnBase has integrated with more than 500 different applications with no time or money spent on custom coding, making it one of the easiest and fastest ECM solutions with which to integrate. OnBase also provides flexibility to create your own integrations with our APIs and Web Services.

Integrate without custom code

Hyland provides a seamless, easy-to-use integration tool called Application Enabler. This integrates OnBase with your business applications with literally just a few mouse-clicks. Instead of weeks or months, most customers complete integrations in a matter of hours. And because there is no custom coding needed, you can upgrade your other business applications without worrying how it will affect OnBase. Don’t let the simplicity fool you. Application Enabler is about more than just accessing documents. Using information on the application’s screen, OnBase can automatically fill out E-forms, launch workflows, print barcode cover-sheets for scan jobs, dynamically compose documents (such as offer letters and policies) and more. One long-time customer integrated OnBase with 12 different applications in one day!

Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)

Every organization is different, and unique business problems often require unique solutions. What if you could completely customize your solution to make it exactly what your users need? The OnBase suite of APIs gives you that flexibility. Your programmers are provided with access points to create custom applications and integrations with OnBase documents and automated processes. Because programming interfaces are provided for industry standard languages – Web Services, .Net, COM, Java – your developers won't have to struggle learning yet another proprietary platform. Unique problems, unique solutions – through the OnBase APIs.

Web Services

Do you need to provide real-time information to customers, business partners, and systems outside of your organization? Do you need to provide your remote offices with system information?

Onbase by Hyland has comprehensive integrations with Microsoft Sharepoint . The discussion topic is a subject by itself , please contact us if you need any further information

Tools for Legacy Systems Bardimm is a very powerful standalone printing tool that goes far beyond printing of barcodes , and is a very useful tool to unlock the secrets towards handling legacy systems printing . we can only afford a brief description .

  • Bardimm provides the ability to handle all the following that legacy systems struggle with :
    • An Freescape Feature to deal with legacy systems' lack of ability to handle Escape Sequences .
    • Barcode Capabilities.
    • Two Dimensional Barcode Capabilities .
    • Manufacturing symbol capabilities .
    • Electronic symbol capabilities .
    • Odette symbol capabilities for the automotice industry .

Foreign language printing and Legacy Systems We provide a series of double byte printer based fonts for the printing of Simplified and Traditional Chinese and other languages .

  • In Printer Based Language Fonts that we provide :
    • Simplified Chinese.
    • Traditional Chinese.
    • Japanese .
    • Korean .
    • Thai .
    • Combined 2 language Fonts .
    • Combined 3 language Fonts .( HP LaserJet only 2 USB Slots , sometimes )
    • Combined 4 language Fonts .( HP LaserJet only 2 USB Slots , sometimes )
    • Combined 5 language Fonts .( HP LaserJet only 2 USB Slots , sometimes )

Graphical Document Creation tool for Legacy Systems- Megaform

  • MegaForm® : Multi-platform electronic forms
    • Producing high-quality business forms is a fundamental part of the professional presentation of your company. The content must be correct, but the presentation is just as important in determining how your contacts perceive your organisation. All too often your applications fail you by not providing you with the ease and flexibility you need to create printouts that project your image. MegaForm is the easy way to escape limitations in your applications. It provides a quick, programming-free method of replacing old, impact printers and preprinted forms with fast, high quality, laser-printed forms, with no or minimal modification to existing applications.

      How Megaform is well suited for handling complexity of legacy printing :

    • Source - Legacy System text spool files .
    • Destination - Modern Office Laser And High End PCL5 Inkjets .
    • Potential Interim Destination - External Program to pre-Manipulate print file .
    • WYSWYG Designer.
    • Complex Formatting .
    • Sends Tray selection , duplex , Page Orientation Commands .
    • Splits large files .

Replacing Legacy Impact Printers

  • The negative impact of impact printers
    • First Negative Business Impact - Automation
      Using Impact Printers severely limits your automation options . Automation can include:
      • Bar coding documents for better filing and retrieval
      • Using Digital signatures to reduce manual repetitive and stressful work
      • Using Postal Codes to save postage costs
      • Using OMR to automate Mailing
      • Using Intelligent Tray selection and electronic forms to reduce paper handling and manual reloading of forms
      • Using Stapling and offset functions of laser printers
    • Second Negative Business Impact – Unprofessional looking correspondence.
      The documents that your organization produces define who you are to your customers as well as your business suppliers and partners. To produce exceptionally professional looking documents from any business application or platform , you need an E-Forms application , not possible on impact printers
      • Impact Printers have limited fonts , limited font sizes
      • Impact printers print at best 24 pin
      • When attempting to print documents with some kind of formatting , like Bold or underline , the noise level increases and the Printer speed slows down .
    • Third Negative Business Impact – Inability to respond to change demanded by today’s business climate.

      3 important groups of people may demand and expect immediate changes to your existing forms layout . The first could be Government , statutory or regulatory bodies , who for example may require you to add antifraud capabilities to your documents . The second group could be your customer’s , who for example may ask you within a week to add barcodes to your documents , and finally the third group are your own business users who may need changes to forms or even simply paper sizes .
      • Impact printers use preprinted media and result in delays and additional costs when changes to forms need to be made
    • Fourth Negative Business Impact – Use of impact printers slow down your business response.
      • Impact printers print at maximum 2000 lpm.
      • Print Speeds diminish whenever you print graphics , lines or bold or underline.
      • Print speeds are unacceptable when printing barcodes.
      • Forms need to be loaded every time you change from printing invoices to printing cheques or other instruments.
      • It takes an hour to do a print head replacement on higher models.
    • Fifth Negative Business Impact - Impact printers have multiple technical limitations that does not help
      • Cannot print Duplex
      • Cannot Orientate – Portrait or Landscape
      • Cannot Staple
      • Noise Levels exceed 55 decibels
      • Cannot Print Color
      • Expensive to maintain
      • Unfriendly to operate