Transforming COBOL into Java

The white paper explores the key business drivers for making the step from COBOL to Java, and how Anubex’s CodeTurn makes this transition possible. It explains the solution's added value over other approaches, and demystify the migration process.

COBOL To Java Transformation Research Paper
COBOL to Java Transformation Research Paper
For a more detailed documentation on how COBOL can be transformed into working, maintainable Java code, please request a copy of our Research Paper here.

Why transform from COBOL to Java?

There are many good reasons to make the move to Java from COBOL, but the following are the largest concerns for businesses today:

  • High (and rising) maintenance and runtime fees for the existing COBOL products
  • Shrinking availability of COBOL developers and lack of interest in COBOL from young developers
  • End-of-life scenarios for certain COBOL technologies
  • Lack of application extensibility and interoperability with other, non-COBOL applications

Java offers answers to all of the above concerns:

  • Support fees are negligible when compared to COBOL, even with the updated Oracle licensing policies.
  • Java is one of the most widely-used programming languages today (1), and it is the language of choice for instruction in the IT programs of many schools. Documentation of the language, software libraries, and development tools are also available free of charge.
  • While not an ISO standard like COBOL, Java is very formally specified. In contrast to ISO specifications, the Java Language Specification can be accessed and downloaded free of charge, the language specification can be downloaded from Furthermore, the Java platform has an open membership community process, with companies as diverse as HP, Cisco, IBM, Hitachi, Boeing, and Oracle working together to adapt the technology to new computing demands. The portability of the technology and its suitability to internet-computing have been defining features from the very first versions, ensuring the language is dialect-free, despite it having multiple implementations on multiple platforms.
  • Its interoperability and portability are unsurpassed when compared to other technologies: it operates with practically all database and middleware technologies in use today and runs on everything from smartphones to washing machines to mainframes.

Next to that, moving to Java also means:

  • Enabling the use of state-of-the-art IDEs, such as Eclipse and IntelliJ IDEA, with extensive debugging, refactoring, profiling and (unit)testing support
  • Enabling the use of thousands of third-party libraries, covering almost all imaginable computing needs:  UI development, database interaction, mail/ftp/http/… communication, parsing, xml processing
  • Enabling the use of modern application architectures (multi-tier, SOA or micro-service based) and deployment techniques (cloud, docker)
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COBOL to Java White Paper
COBOL to Java Transformation White Paper
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