School of Computing

Legacy System Anti-Patterns and a Pattern-Oriented Migration Response

A Lauder and S Kent

In P Henderson, editor, Systems Engineering for Business Process Change, pages 182-196. Springer Verlag, 2000.


Mature information systems grow old disgracefully as successive waves of hacking result in accidental architectures which resist the reflection of on-going business process change. Such petrified systems are termed legacy systems. Legacy systems are simultaneously business assets and business liabilities. Their hard-won dependability and accurate reflection of tacit business knowledge prevents us from undertaking green-field development of replacement systems. Their resistance to the reflection of business process change prevents us from retaining them. Consequently, we are drawn in this paper to a controlled pattern-oriented legacy system migration strategy. Legacy systems exhibit six undesirable anti-patterns. A legacy system migration strategy must focus upon the controlled elimination of these anti-patterns by the step-wise application of six corresponding desirable patterns. Adherence to this migration strategy results in adaptive systems reflecting purposeful architectures open to the on-going reflection of business process change. Without such a strategy there is a very real danger that legacy system migration will occur all too literally. That is, the old legacy system will be migrated to a new legacy system albeit it one using the latest buzzword-compliant technology.

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Bibtex Record

author = {A Lauder and S Kent},
title = {{Legacy System Anti-Patterns and a Pattern-Oriented Migration Response}},
month = {unknown},
year = {2000},
pages = {182-196},
keywords = {determinacy analysis, Craig interpolants},
note = {},
doi = {},
url = {},
    booktitle = {Systems Engineering for Business Process Change},
    editor = {P Henderson},
    publication_type = {incollection},
    publisher = {Springer Verlag},
    submission_id = {10185_950005190},

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