Refactoring: Automated Conversion with DB-Shuttle


Modern Systems designed and developed a unique patent-pending automated conversion technology called DB-Shuttle, which allows modernization with 100% automation, functional equivalency, and equal or better performance at execution. The Modern Systems teams use it to refactor legacy databases to relational technologies and legacy applications to newer, more open languages, using just a few clicks. Furthermore, Modern Systems guarantees retention of customer business rules and retention of the legacy asset on the new platform.

DB-Shuttle provides automated technology that protects legacy assets, reduces maintenance costs, provides agility and flexibility, and enables Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) within business-critical applications.

DB-Shuttle Overview

DB-Shuttle uses the customer source code as data within its massive SQL Server database. It analyzes and manipulates that data during deconstruction of the legacy databases and applications, and during construction of the replacement relational databases and applications.

The DB-Shuttle technology is unique in the industry because it provides 100% refactoring of both databases and application software. Our competitors say a 100% automated solution is impossible. But Modern Systems achieves 100% automation in its refactoring solutions. Manual intervention is not part of the Modern Systems process.


The primary functions of DB-Shuttle include its ability to:

  • Inventory and assess any mainframe applications in great detail, pin-pointing those areas that require special attention
  • Refactor entire applications to newer languages using customer specific naming rules, standards and requirements
  • Refactor non-relational databases and files to relational technology while preserving all existing data access paths
  • Refactor non-relational data to a relational load format without the data ever leaving the customer environment

How It Works


  • Project Center tracks all information about each refactoring project, including customer information, language targets, naming standards and refactor overrides.
  • Navigator performs a rigorous assessment of the collected customer components, including a full inventory and analysis of the component and their inter-dependencies.
  • SQL Imager de-constructs the non-relational database and file definitions, interprets the data and key relationships, constructs the new DDL to mirror the legacy database structure, and writes all of the COBOL programs required to extract the legacy data to the format required by the relational load utilities.
  • Transporter engine handles the construction of the new applications with their new languages and database access. Depending upon the type of modernization, the application code language may remain the same (COBOL to COBOL) or may change to a completely new language in the target environment.


  • DB-Shuttle is not a database simulator. It is designed for complete intelligent refactoring with rules and code generation leaving no references to legacy technologies. Nor does it simply replace one group of legacy code with another group of code. It contains the intelligence of a complete team of senior database administrators, analysts, designers and developers all in one.
  • DB-Shuttle is rules-based. Rules are kept at a language level for each language and at a customer level for each refactoring exercise. It then uses these rules and the de-constructed customer source code, stored as metadata, to generate high-performance structured programs and components performing the same business functions with newer technologies.
  • DB-Shuttle takes the guesswork out of modernization. It plans and manages each step in the process of refactoring, replacement, and retirement of non-relational applications and databases.
  • Modern Systems provides a cost-effective method for moving from older non-relational technology to newer relational technology. Organizations can save hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in maintenance costs alone. DB-Shuttle allows for modernization at a fraction of the cost and in a fraction of the time expected compared to other solutions.
  • Customers save millions each year by eliminating the high-cost license fees associated with legacy technology. Modern Systems provides a secure abandonment strategy that is low-risk, low-cost, comprehensive, and proven.

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