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Test Automation and Source Code Analysis for IBM i: why bother enforcing a new quality gate?

By Nick Blamey | November 27th 2018

Quality Gate

What’s in it for the developers and why is it needed for DevOps – a thought inspiring blog by ARCAD’s Director of Northern European operations, Nick Blamey

The business problem:  Continuous Quality of applications depends on implementing policies that enforce immediate validation.  But CIO’s responsible for diverse application assets are lacking code guidelines from where to start measuring code quality and also the resources to allocate on this activity.

Continuous Quality (CQ) and DevOps

Software defects drastically increase the cost of application development. Finding and fixing errors in production is often 100 times more expensive than finding and fixing it during the design and coding phases.  It is vital that teams incorporate quality into all phases of software development and automate quality verification as far as possible to locate defects early in the process and avoid repeat effort.  This is what is meant by “Continuous Quality” or CQ, which forms an essential safeguard – or quality gate – in the rapid delivery cycles in DevOps and CI/CD workflows today.

Which techniques are available for Continuous Quality?

Static code analysis is the simplest and most effective method to prevent defects and harden code while accelerating application delivery.

Automating the code analysis as early as the build or Continuous Integration phase means your team can find and fix systemic defects when the cost of remediation is at its lowest.  After the initial investment in configuring rules and metrics the gains in efficiency become exponential over the development lifecycle.

To achieve continuous quality, organizations can employ a number of strategies.

  • Static analysis of source code to identify complexity hotspots, deviations from standards, security loopholes, etc.
  • Peer reviews to check code written by one’s equals (peers) to ensure it meets specific criteria.
  • Unit testing to execute and scrutinize the individual modules, or units, of an application, for proper operation.
  • Regression testing to repeat a set of test scenarios on a new application release to identify any deviations from normal operation.
  • Monitoring of the application in production to ensure it is operating correctly after each update and at all times.

To be effective in a DevOps environment each of the above techniques must be both automated and continuous, integrated within the CI/CQ/CD workflow.

How important is Source Code Analysis (SCA) for DevOps?

Source code Analysis:  what alternatives?

Faced with the challenge of auditing an existing IBM i code base for quality, CIOs have a limited number of choices:

  • Complex peer review process: even supported by collaborative tooling, the manual effort involved in a peer review can be difficult to manage across large teams with a range of expertise.
  • External audit of source code by experts: lacking in application knowledge, the learning curve for external code auditors is often steep, making this an expensive option with often unquantifiable benefits.
  • Continuous source code analysis using an automated solution designed specifically for an IBM i RPG code base

The cost of defects in application development

A study in software quality from Capers Jones in 2008 came to two very important conclusions:

  • Development “wastage” and defect repairs (from deployed code) absorbed almost two-thirds of the US software workforce – leaving only one third for productive work on new projects.
  • 50% of software development project budgets are spent fixing poor quality code; fewer than 6% of organizations have clearly defined software management processes in place; and software projects of 100,000 function points in size have a failure rate of 65%.

More recent articles on this topic suggest that for many organisations the statistics remain very much unchanged today.

Since DevOps has now taken over as the key driver in most development shops there is a massive potential for optimisation to eliminate the challenges described above and make developers more efficient in their work by spending more time coding and less time fixing defects.

The limitations of functional testing

Most organizations perform functional testing of their applications through the UI, required for compliance reasons.  However, like black box testing, since each and every defect needs to be diagnosed from the UI, this approach brings little information to help developers to actually fix problems.  The result is typically a constant stream of defects classified as:

  • cannot reproduce the issue
  • test environment not set up correctly
  • require more information

With poor information for developers, the challenges are pushed downstream.  Projects face delays due to lengthy code understanding and a sub-optimal debugging approach. This severely limits the ability for any IBM i development team to maintain the “speed of delivery” required for meeting their DevOps targets.

Static Code Analysis: Who does it and why

There are 3 main approaches to static code analysis in the multi-platform world: Static Analysis for Security, Static analysis for Code Complexity and Static Analysis for Code Quality.

Many products exist to perform this task and the market is large and expanding with a few dominant players. The solutions are often extremely expensive and tend to be less relevant on the IBM i which is less susceptible to security issues than other platforms.

IBM AppScan Source is the best example of the market leader for Code Security but MicroFocus also offer the Fortify Security Suite with a number of additional tools available from other vendors e.g. CheckMarx, Klocwork, CA Veracode.

For Code Complexity metrics, the key players include CAST and McCabe but neither offer support for RPG on the IBM i.

Why do IBM i Developers need Source Code Analysis?

Given the multiple variants of RPG and the sheer longevity of applications, developers on IBM i face a unique challenge with legacy code bases containing millions of lines of code that have been maintained for sometimes thirty years by successive developers.  It is laborious to understand program logic and assess the quality of code – resources are diverted to address the “technical debt” of the code base.  The challenge is greater still given the ever-growing shortage of RPG skills in the market.  The new Free Form RPG syntax has changed the game, offering a means of onboarding a new generation of developers – making the conversion of RPGLE applications to Free Form the “burning platform” of our day.

Source Code Analysis as key part of any “legacy code base Audit”

Source Code Analysis has the potential to be delivered as part of a wider code audit process.  Companies like ARCAD have built solutions that generate a complete metadata overview of the entire code base, enabling a deeper level of analysis and integrity checking.  Here source code analysis is delivered as part of the code audit and rules and metrics are used to enforce local standards.

ARCAD CodeChecker can create a Code Quality Baseline from which the RPG Code Base can be continually improved through accurate and regular measurement of code quality. This allows CIOs and Development leads to show application owners that they are consistently delivering against ISO 27001 continual improvement goals of the wider organisation.

Widen your net to catch Code Quality issues for RPG

As described above, RPG is a special case in the development world.  Among the standard source code analysis tools, a few (such as SonarCube) are able to perform a simple RPG Code Review and Static Quality Analysis, but they are severely limited in their coverage (for example, lacking support for the many RPG variants) and the number of rules they can enforce (limited to around 30 mainly code documentation guidelines).

The potential business risk of these limited tools is that:

  • They are not really usable for code quality guideline enforcement for RPG specifically
  • They tend to create a number of false positives which limits their effectiveness and could in theory eliminate any value introduced in the Peer Review process by forcing developers to debug issues which are caused by the tool itself.

Modern DevOps organizations are now looking for an “industrial strength” solution to this challenge to ensure that an implementation an open source Source Code Analysis tool doesn’t itself become a bottleneck in the DevOps workflow.

The design goals of ARCAD Code Checker from ARCAD have been therefore to fit with modern large DevOps oriented IBM i RPG development teams, emphasizing:

  • Rapid scan of an entire code base
  • Auto-Tune the Quality rules for enforcement on a code base by code base, stage by stage basis
  • Provide real value to the developers performing the coding work in rapid feedback to the standard of their work after each and every edit. (see section below)
  • Seamlessly integrate into a wider ARCAD DevOps tools chain offering, Rapid and complete x-referencing and Auditing, Source Code Management, Dependency Building, Automatic Testing (with deep dive diagnostics of errors) and Deployment and Release Automation for IBM i LPAR environment management.

RAPID VALUE from ARCAD CodeChecker for your CodeBase

Productivity gains through Source Code Analysis Quality Gate enforcement

Typically, if a developer knows within a few minutes of writing code that a guideline has been breached with a desktop code checking product like ARCAD CodeChecker, they can fix issues immediately with minimal impact on quality. If Code is “peer reviewed” a developer could be waiting for days even weeks for feedback by which time the developer has moved to other tasks. The best analogy for this would be a grammar checker with word processing i.e. if you know immediately as you write text that you have made a grammar error, you can fix it immediately whilst the sentence is still in your mind – compared with the time it takes if you perform a grammar check 2 weeks after you wrote the sentence. In this case of course the writer of the text will spend 90% of the grammar check and correction time trying to understand the context of what he/she wrote 2 weeks before.

Driving enforcement of Code Quality by offering real and immediate value to Developers

Many Source Code Analysis tools have a bad reputation. CIOs and Development management must constantly make risk management decisions between: slowing down the development process and the resultant business owner pressure to maintain the speed of delivery vs. introduction of technical debt which could cause a large business risk in the future if Code Quality Guidelines are not enforced.

Code Checker from ARCAD has been designed to add immediate value right at the developer’s workspace / desktop through its integration with RDi and SEU. ARCAD designed Code Checker to cope with the regular comments from RPG developers “If you are going to Mark my homework, at least time me how you are going to judge my success of failure”.

In addition to the optimisation of the Peer Review process through Automatic Code Quality Static Analysis, ARCAD CodeChecker can offer value to developers and your inflight projects:

  • Creation and enforcement of Source Code Quality guidelines delivered automatically eliminates the need for Peer Review: allowing developers to focus on Coding more quickly vs peer review.
  • Putting in a process through Source Code Analysis for the elimination of technical debt means that IBM i RPG team can stay up to speed with other teams within organisation in a DevOps world.

Combining Source Code Analysis with Testing Automation, Database integrity checking and helping Developers to debug complex issues more rapidly.

Modern Development Teams face this problem

DevOps Bottleneck effect from manual Source Code Analysis, Testing, and Debugging, re-test cycle

DevOps Bottleneck effect from manual Source Code Analysis, Testing, and Debugging, re-test cycle.

To cope with an acceleration of the DevOps cycles from a few releases per year to more regular releases i.e. monthly or even weekly releases, organizations are driven to perform more regular testing, normally delivered through automation.  They are also impelled to eliminate a lot of the effort which goes into the “localisation of defects” to their root cause, to ensure that developers can drive higher quality code without an impact on the timeframes required by application owners.

Shift left as Key Driver for DevOps:

The graph below shows a typical IBM i / RPG Defect graph i.e. the amount of defects which occur over the time from the start of the project to the actual release date.

Cost of defects across the development lifecycle

Cost of defects across the development lifecycle

Though typically 85% of defects are introduced in the early coding phases of the DevOps cycle, the cost to repair defects grows exponentially through the later phases of test and delivery, reaching inestimably high costs when a defect is found in production, with potentially a significant impact on business bottom line and reputation.

It is clear to see that by “shifting left” the detection of defects, their cost and impact is minimized.

ARCAD Software, through their work with many development teams on RPG have seen that developers perform a number of tasks to advance the detection of errors. These include:

  • Hand Coding unit tests themselves to exercise individual program functionality and make sure that they haven’t created defects as they develop.
  • Testing individual Batch processes are still working after any changes are made to specific programs.
  • Re-setting and working with complex Test Data including Anonymisation requirements.
  • X referencing defects across a multitude of components / programs to understand the impact of each code change across other RPG programs and also NON -IBM i x references.
  • Scripting the deployment of new code once compiled onto the different LPARS (dev, QA, Prod etc.) and then performing a manual check that once deployed each of the LPARS is fully functioning. This process is typically referred to as “test environment assurance”.
  • Preparing the LPAR for a full end to end test execution including load testing and end to end functional testing.

Yet from ARCAD’s experience, each of these processes when performed manually causes additional cost, effort and risk of bottleneck in a DevOps deployment process.

To cope with these challenges, ARCAD offer a number of tools in addition to CodeChecker (Source code analysis) to eliminate bottlenecks in the DevOps process and provide a frictionless process from Functional Specification through to Coding, Unit Testing, Compilation, Build, End to end Functional Test and Production deployment :

  • ARCAD Verifier (BATCH and UI Testing)
  • ARCAD DOT Anonymizer,
  • ARCAD Observer for X-referencing and
  • ARCAD Builder and Drops for deployment automation and Release Management.

Each of these solutions can add additional value to your Development Process, shifting left to reduce overall cost in the development cycle:

Contribution of ARCAD solutions to a “shift left” of development costs

Contribution of ARCAD solutions to a “shift left” of development costs

SpareBank Success Story

SpareBank reduced costs of environment management & compliance by 70%

Case Study

For example, SpareBank1 is one of ARCAD’s leading customers and managed to achieve a 70% elimination of Test Environment Assurance effort through the use of the ARCAD suite

Read the Story

ARCAD view and positioning

As a company ARCAD began its evolution fixing the Source Code analysis problem of Year 2000 date format changes. Since then ARCAD have provided solutions to the most burning and current challenges our 350+ customers face with their RPG code bases: X referencing, Auditing, Source Code Management, Building, Testing and Deploying.

ARCAD for DevOps: suite of solutions integrated over a repository core

ARCAD for DevOps:  suite of solutions integrated over a repository core

ARCAD Steps

Suggested next step:

An Audit process using ARCAD expertise and tooling is an excellent starting point to your journey to a quality DevOps process.

To find out more about how ARCAD have designed their solutions to fix the next problem in Source Code Analysis. Contact ARCAD and see how CodeChecker and other ARCAD DevOps tools for IBM i can help with your CodeReview, Audit, Testing and DevOps processes.

Nick Blamey

Nick Blamey

ARCAD’s Director of Northern European operations

Nick Blamey joined ARCAD from IBM where he was responsible for DevOps and Rational solutions in various roles across Europe. Previously Nick worked for other software development tools orgainsations including: HP / MicroFocus, Fortify Software (acquired by HP), Empirix (acquired by Oracle), Radview and Segue (now Microfocus). Nick is a thought leader in the areas of Static Code Analysis, Testing Automation, DevOps and Shift-Left strategies.

2018-11-29T12:00:30+00:00 Blog|

ARCAD Software launches “Pay-per-Use” system for DROPS, their flagship Application Release Orchestration (ARO) solution

ARCAD Software launches “Pay-per-Use” system for DROPS, their flagship Application Release Orchestration (ARO) solution

Annecy, France and Peterborough, NH, USA – 12 November 2018 – ARCAD Software, market leader in Enterprise DevOps and Modernization solutions, today announced the launch of a new Pay-per-Use pricing system for DROPS, their flagship Application Release Orchestration solution.

(more…)

2018-11-14T17:29:29+00:00 Press Articles|

Getting Progressive About Regression Testing

Getting Progressive About Regression Testing

If you want to employ modern software development and testing techniques, you have to move on from simple unit testing by developers and implement regression testing in your quality assurance (QA) organization. This is perhaps the best way to take the risk out of continuous development – something that companies have to embrace if they are to remain competitive.

The difference between regression testing and normal testing is that in the most common model, the developer has a request to fix a problem or to add a feature, and they make their changes and do unit testing, where they come up with test cases that will test the problem or the feature before they pass it off to QA to essentially run the same tests. Developers make a change and they know what result they are supposed to get back. If you add 2 plus 2, you know you are supposed to get 4. If 2 plus 2 equals four, then unit testing is successful, whereas regression testing is testing all of the functionality, and this is much broader. Unit testing is not looking for broader impacts.

Read the whole Article
2018-10-26T09:38:08+00:00 Press Articles|

Continuous Testing (CT) in your DevOps Strategy

Continuous Testing (CT) in your DevOps Strategy

As DevOps drives faster and more frequent software delivery, the greater the pressure on testing staff. Each update needs to be regression-tested to avoid the risk of downtime. At this rate of change, manual testing becomes a bottleneck, and is often the first task to be sidelined.

If you are testing manually, watch our Webinar to learn how to automate the process of Continuous Test, to catch errors as early as possible in the cycle :

  • Increase your team’s productivity
  • Shorten time to delivery
  • Increase application reliability in production
  • Reduce IT costs

We will demonstrate how easy it is to record test scenarios from your 5250, client/server and web interfaces. Learn how to automatically replay all scenarios impacted by a software change, and quickly identify errors via graphical reports.

Whether you have 2 Testers or 40 Business Analysts performing regression testing, watch it now!

Watch the Replay

(more…)

2018-10-26T15:07:58+00:00 On-demand Webinars|

ARCAD releases new CodeChecker module to guarantee software quality and reduce DevOps risk

ARCAD releases new CodeChecker module to guarantee software quality and reduce DevOps risk

Peterborough, NH and Annecy, France – 16 September 2018 – ARCAD Software, leading vendor in DevOps and Enterprise Modernization solutions for IBM i, today announced the release of a new module in its DevOps suite: ARCAD-CodeChecker, for continuous source code quality analysis.

(more…)

2018-10-02T11:34:27+00:00 Press Articles|

DevOps Facts & Predictions – Infographic

by Olivier Bourgeois | September 6, 2018

DevOps adoption is growing faster than ever. Check out our infographic to discover the latest DevOps predictions, and how this agile corporate culture improves efficiency in all lines of business!

Infographie - Faits et Prédictions DevOps
DevOps for IBM i White Paper thumbnail

Improve your DevOps skills!

White Paper

This White Paper describes the opportunity, the challenges and the solutions offered by DROPS as you rollout a DevOps strategy in your multi-platform environments.

Download the White Paper

2018-11-28T15:25:32+00:00 Blog|

Secure the missing link in your Application Release process

Secure the missing link in your Application Release process.

Deployment is by far the most critical phase in software delivery. Any incident can have costly consequences on the availability of applications and even your company’s reputation.

Many organizations already automate application deployment, but still run a major risk:  Reliability in Production.

Whatever the technologies you employ – in our webinar, you’ll learn how to:

  • Secure the deployment process
  • Minimize the risk of errors in production
  • Keep operational control over application availability
  • Safeguard against costly downtime

Protect your business’s bottom line. Watch our Webinar!

Demonstration

Whether you run your business on Windows, UNIX, Linux, IBM i (aka iSeries, AS/400) or mainframe z/OS platforms, application reliability in production is a critical and constant concern.

In our Webinar, you will learn how to rapidly:

  • Return to a previous stable application state in the case of error,
  • Rollback your database upgrades,
  • Check the integrity of your deliveries before triggering a deployment,
  • Integrate your entire application portfolio, including software packages,
  • Manage all architectures (Legacy, Web, Mobile, Cloud) with one single tool,
  • Comply with regulations re. separation of roles and responsibilities,
  • Coordinate deployment with other daily operations tasks.

With concrete examples we’ll show how you can complete your DevOps strategy using existing enterprise tools (GitHub, Jira, Jenkins, Ansible, Docker, etc.).

 

Watch the replay

Presenters

Floyd Del Muro

Business Development Manager, ARCAD Software

With 26 years of consulting experience in software development, Floyd is DevOps Advocate for the ARCAD Software group.  In his role at ARCAD Software, Floyd has been extensively involved in the management of DevOps migration and Enterprise Modernization projects, from planning stages through to delivery.  Drawing on his experience in managed services and the introduction of agile methods, Floyd is a trusted advisor and speaker on the subjects of CI/CD, Test Automation and Application Lifecycle Management.

Ray Bernardi

Senior Consultant, ARCAD Software

Ray Bernardi is a 30-year IT veteran and currently Senior Consultant for ARCAD Software, international ISV and IBM Business Partner.  Ray has been involved with the development and sales of many cutting edge software products throughout his career, with specialist knowledge in Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) covering a broad range of functional areas including enterprise modernization, CI/CD and DevOps.  In addition, Ray is a frequent speaker technical conferences around the world and has authored articles in several publications on the subject of application analysis and modernization, DevOps, and business intelligence.

About ARCAD Software

CreaARCAD Group logoted in 1992, the ARCAD Software group is leading international vendor in integrated DevOps and Enterprise Modernization solutions, with subsidiaries in Europe, USA and Asia, supporting 1000+ installations across 35 countries. ARCAD solutions are distributed by IBM worldwide.  ARCAD’s DevOps technology is positioned in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Application Release Automation (ARA).

North America – ARCAD Software Inc.
1 Phoenix Mill Lane, Suite 203
Peterborough NH 03458
Toll free: 800.676.4709
Phone: 603.371.9074
sales-us@arcadsoftware.com
Europe – ARCAD Software
55, rue Adrastée – Parc Altaïs- F-74650 Chavanod/Annecy
Phone: +33 450 578 396
sales-eu@arcadsoftware.com
Asia – ARCAD Software Asia
Room 22, Smart-Space 3F – Units 908-915, Level 9, Cyberport 3
100 Cyberport Road – Hong Kong
Phone: +852 3618 6118
sales-asia@arcadsoftware.com

2018-10-26T11:59:37+00:00 On-demand Webinars|

Orchestrate a CI/CT/CD pipeline for IBM i using Git, Jenkins and JIRA

Orchestrate a CI/CT/CD pipeline for IBM i using Git, Jenkins and JIRA

Looking to orchestrate a continuous delivery pipeline for all your IBM i code – RPG, CL, DDS or COBOL – using the same tools as on your open systems?

…Automate the integration, test, and delivery of your RPG changes?
…Share a common source code repository between your IBM i and open-systems developers?
…Ensure that continuous test is an integral part of your CI/CD workflow ?

In our Webinar, we’ll demonstrate how you can achieve all this with an integrated CI/CT/CD pipeline on IBM i using your standard enterprise tools Git, Jenkins and JIRA:

  • continuous integration (CI) and dependency build of RPG, CL, DDS, …
  • continuous “regression” test (CT)
  • continuous deploy (CD) & rollback on error

Simplify your DevOps toolchain across IBM i and open systems.  Watch the Webinar!

Watch the replay

Presenters

Floyd Del Muro

Business Development Manager, ARCAD Software

With 26 years of experience on the IBM midrange platform, Floyd is Business Development Manager for the ARCAD Software group.  In his role at ARCAD Software, Floyd has been extensively involved in the management of DevOps and Enterprise Modernization projects on IBM i, from planning stages through to delivery.  Drawing on his experience in managed services and the introduction of agile methods, Floyd is a trusted advisor and speaker on the subjects of DevOps, Test Automation and Application Lifecycle Management.

Ray Bernardi

Senior Consultant, ARCAD Software

Ray Bernardi is a 30-year IT veteran and currently a Pre/Post Sales technical Support Specialist for ARCAD Software, international ISV and IBM Business Partner.  Ray has been involved with the development and sales of many cutting edge software products throughout his career, with specialist knowledge in Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) products from ARCAD Software covering a broad range of functional areas including enterprise IBM i modernization and DevOps.  In addition, Ray is a frequent speaker at COMMON and many other technical conferences around the world and has authored articles in several publications on the subject of application analysis and modernization, SQL, and business intelligence.

About ARCAD Software

CreaARCAD Group logoted in 1992, the ARCAD Software group is leading international vendor in integrated DevOps and Enterprise Modernization solutions, with subsidiaries in Europe, USA and Asia, supporting 1000+ installations across 35 countries. ARCAD solutions are distributed by IBM worldwide.  ARCAD’s DevOps technology is positioned in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Application Release Automation (ARA).

North America – ARCAD Software Inc.
1 Phoenix Mill Lane, Suite 203
Peterborough NH 03458
Toll free: 800.676.4709
Phone: 603.371.9074
sales-us@arcadsoftware.com
Europe – ARCAD Software
55, rue Adrastée – Parc Altaïs- F-74650 Chavanod/Annecy
Phone: +33 450 578 396
sales-eu@arcadsoftware.com
Asia – ARCAD Software Asia
Room 22, Smart-Space 3F – Units 908-915, Level 9, Cyberport 3
100 Cyberport Road – Hong Kong
Phone: +852 3618 6118
sales-asia@arcadsoftware.com

2018-09-07T16:53:05+00:00 On-demand Webinars|

2018 will undoubtedly mark the advent of the digital era

Dear customer / Dear partner,

2018 will undoubtedly mark the advent of the digital era. All companies have understood that they have to adapt to this new world or risk outright disappearance. The good news is that they have the means and the motivation to do so and many have already targeted their investments in this direction.

Entering the digital era is first and foremost a realization that future users, customers or partners will be those young generations who are entering the job market, infused with digital in their daily lives, and who are revolutionizing all established codes.

The digital age means thousands of new mobile applications that need to interact with the core systems. It’s also thousands of webservices developed and web interfaces with an enriched user experience.

This new mix of technologies and the necessary adaptations in the information system make DevOps an essential strategy for all IT organizations, large and small.

If many companies are already mature in the implementation of their “DevOps journey”, it is often applied only over their new technologies. This is far from the case when we observe their so-called “legacy” systems. The new challenge for them is to extend the DevOps approach across their entire information system. Here again, the adaptation of their IT organization to younger generations. Without that shift, who will maintain these critical applications at the very core of the company’s business?

We live in an exciting era of profound change and opportunity. The strength of Arcad’s enterprise and technology is its ability to be credible to populations that are so different in terms of culture, age and experience. We were the first to integrate within our offering all the tools, open source or not, from the open world and which are already very popular on the market. This approach makes it possible to generalize a DevOps strategy, whatever the technologies and the languages ​​used. It brings credibility to the use of these tools in the legacy world, while trivializing legacy platforms within the entire information system. The transitional phase will probably be long, but at least it gives a very clear strategic direction. 2018 will be, we are convinced, the advent of the “DevOps for legacy” era.

You will find in this newsletter many examples that illustrate my point.

Yours sincerely,

Philippe Magne

Philippe Magne

CEO And Chairman

2018-02-14T16:48:58+00:00 Miscellaneous|

Employee spotlight – Interview of our Indian developers

Discover the interview of developers joining recently Arcad (more…)

2018-11-28T15:24:23+00:00 Blog|

What is Source Code Management?

by Ray Bernardi | February 8, 2018

Source Code Management process
I’m old. Let’s get that established right up front. I have been around longer than sand, or at least that’s how it feels sometimes. You would think someone who has been in the industry for as long as I have would have a simple answer to a simple question. What is source code management? My reply? Well, that depends.

(more…)

2018-11-28T18:16:14+00:00 Blog|

Modernization process, application modernization roadmap

by Ray Bernardi | February 2, 2018

Automating IBM i Modernization in 3 steps
It’s 2018 – Have you modernized yet ? If not, you must be waiting for some kind of invitation. Consider this a formal invitation. You need to get with the times.

If you haven’t noticed, over the past few years there have been some significant changes in the IBM i landscape, changes for the better. I used to hear people talking about how the days of the IBM i were numbered, that it was antiquated and that the people working on it were all dinosaurs. That’s simply not true.

(more…)

2019-01-08T10:32:16+00:00 Blog|

Transforming The Art Of Code And The Face Of IBM i

ARCAD has been in business for 25 years, and we have done a lot of technical innovation over those years. We started our business with traditional software change management, on the software change management at that time, which is the combination of having a set of tools to manage developer work and then to transfer from development to test to production. At that time, of course, it was only for OS/400 and then IBM i production platforms. There are some customers with many production machines, but the typical case involves two machines: one for development and test, and the other for production.

(more…)

2018-01-25T09:52:41+00:00 Press Articles|

Continuous Integration/Deployment (CI/CD) for IBM i, using Git, Jenkins and JIRA

How can traditional IBM i development languages, like RPG, CL, DDS or even COBOL, be integrated into the continuous workflows used by open systems teams, with Jenkins, Git and JIRA?

Learn how to bring these typically disparate teams into sync, using the same tools and delivering changes together.

We’ll take you through each phase of the DevOps cycle and see how to accomplish this integration and what the challenges are, using open source tools across both IBM i and open systems. In particular, we’ll demonstrate how you can automate the most complex tasks like:

  • dependency build (CI) of specific IBM i technologies, e.g. ILE and DB2 SQL
  • code quality check (CQ)
  • regression test (CT)
  • continuous deploy (CD) & rollback on error

 

Watch our Webinar to improve your open source tool skills on IBM i!

Watch the replay

Presenters

Floyd Del Muro

Business Development Manager, ARCAD Software

With 26 years of experience on the IBM midrange platform, Floyd is Business Development Manager for the ARCAD Software group.  In his role at ARCAD Software, Floyd has been extensively involved in the management of DevOps and Enterprise Modernization projects on IBM i, from planning stages through to delivery.  Drawing on his experience in managed services and the introduction of agile methods, Floyd is a trusted advisor and speaker on the subjects of DevOps, Test Automation and Application Lifecycle Management.

Ray Bernardi

Senior Consultant, ARCAD Software

Ray Bernardi is a 30-year IT veteran and currently a Pre/Post Sales technical Support Specialist for ARCAD Software, international ISV and IBM Business Partner.  Ray has been involved with the development and sales of many cutting edge software products throughout his career, with specialist knowledge in Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) products from ARCAD Software covering a broad range of functional areas including enterprise IBM i modernization and DevOps.  In addition, Ray is a frequent speaker at COMMON and many other technical conferences around the world and has authored articles in several publications on the subject of application analysis and modernization, SQL, and business intelligence.

About ARCAD Software

CreaARCAD Group logoted in 1992, the ARCAD Software group is leading international vendor in integrated DevOps and Enterprise Modernization solutions, with subsidiaries in Europe, USA and Asia, supporting 1000+ installations across 35 countries. ARCAD solutions are distributed by IBM worldwide.  ARCAD’s DevOps technology is positioned in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Application Release Automation (ARA).

North America – ARCAD Software Inc.
1 Phoenix Mill Lane, Suite 203
Peterborough NH 03458
Toll free: 800.676.4709
Phone: 603.371.9074
sales-us@arcadsoftware.com
Europe – ARCAD Software
55, rue Adrastée – Parc Altaïs- F-74650 Chavanod/Annecy
Phone: +33 450 578 396
sales-eu@arcadsoftware.com
Asia – ARCAD Software Asia
Room 22, Smart-Space 3F – Units 908-915, Level 9, Cyberport 3
100 Cyberport Road – Hong Kong
Phone: +852 3618 6118
sales-asia@arcadsoftware.com

2018-09-04T09:47:31+00:00 On-demand Webinars|

GitHub: How Developers Got to Run the World (sic)

Of the world’s most visited websites this month, GitHub rates 59 and climbing. Not bad considering that GitHub’s appeal is limited to software developers, whereas the other popular sites like Google and Amazon have a planetary audience. Is software becoming as important as the written word?

Probably not, but with the power of open source and a distributed software hub, there are ways to shape and improve our world far more quickly than before. GitHub is home to 24M developers and is THE place developers go when they need something.

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2018-01-30T17:14:47+00:00 Press Articles|

ARCAD Procures Funding To Fuel Expansion

The financial incentives instigating investors to back companies that create software and provide services to the IBM i community continue to raise eyebrows and elicit surprise among those unfamiliar with the innovation taking place in the so-called legacy netherworld.

Another glimpse of this appeared last week when ARCAD Software announced it received a € 2.5 million ($2.95 million in US currency) investment from the European equity firm Alto Invest. ARCAD develops and markets DevOps and modernization solutions for platforms that include IBM i, Unix, Linux, Windows and z/OS. This is the first external funding ARCAD has received during its corporate history that includes more than 25 years in the IBM midrange market.
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2018-01-30T17:23:32+00:00 Press Articles|

Arcad Software, a world leader in Application Lifecycle Management solutions, announces a € 2.5M fundraising from Alto Invest

Arcad Software, a world leader in Application Lifecycle Management solutions, announces a € 2.5M fundraising from Alto Invest

 

Annecy and Paris, 27 November 2017

Created 25 years ago and present in Europe, USA and Asia, Arcad Software is among the top 3 global vendors specializing in Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) and Enterprise Modernization for IBM i (aka iSeries, AS/400) environments.
(more…)

2018-01-30T17:21:33+00:00 Press Articles|

How Git can be used as the source repository for your native IBMi code? – Part 1

Git started with GitHub and ARCAD on IBM i

by Ray Bernardi | November 14, 2017

I have been experimenting with Git as the repository for IBMi native source like RPG, CLP and so on. Git seems to be the source repository of choice at the moment and using it for native code seems to open up a whole new world to IBMi developers. Imagine being able to branch and merge IBMi code as easily as you do your PHP code. Imagine adopting agile methodologies for native development, builds and deployments. Imagine never having to “check-out” code and jump through those hoops. That’s what Git allows, and it’s really not that hard to accomplish. (more…)

2018-11-28T18:15:43+00:00 Blog|

Webinar: DevOps for IBM i using GitHub, JIRA and Jenkins

How can traditional IBM i development languages, like RPG, CL, DDS or even COBOL, be integrated into the modern or open source tools used by other development teams, like Jenkins, GitHub, and JIRA?

In our Webinar, you will see how to bring the different teams into sync, using the same tools and delivering changes together.

Properly configured, these open source tools make development much easier on IBM i.

We will demonstrate how to:

  • Automate a complete DevOps cycle, using open source tools across both IBM i and distributed systems
  • Manage all your source code (RPG, .NET Java, PHP…) in the same repository
  • Simplify the most complex tasks, like the “smart build” of ILE and DB2 SQL
  • Work with concurrent versions and “branches” that are safe and easy to manage

Learn from our DevOps tips and techniques for IBM i.  Watch the replay!

Watch the replay

Presenters

Floyd Del Muro

Business Development Manager, ARCAD Software

With 26 years of experience on the IBM midrange platform, Floyd is Business Development Manager for the ARCAD Software group.  In his role at ARCAD Software, Floyd has been extensively involved in the management of DevOps and Enterprise Modernization projects on IBM i, from planning stages through to delivery.  Drawing on his experience in managed services and the introduction of agile methods, Floyd is a trusted advisor and speaker on the subjects of DevOps, Test Automation and Application Lifecycle Management.

Ray Bernardi

Senior Consultant, ARCAD Software

Ray Bernardi is a 30-year IT veteran and currently a Pre/Post Sales technical Support Specialist for ARCAD Software, international ISV and IBM Business Partner.  Ray has been involved with the development and sales of many cutting edge software products throughout his career, with specialist knowledge in Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) products from ARCAD Software covering a broad range of functional areas including enterprise IBM i modernization and DevOps.  In addition, Ray is a frequent speaker at COMMON and many other technical conferences around the world and has authored articles in several publications on the subject of application analysis and modernization, SQL, and business intelligence.

Vitor Monteiro

Solutions Engineer, GitHub

Vitor has been an Engineer for most of his professional career. He worked in the Portuguese IT HealthCare and UK Finance Services industries as an Engineering Lead before fulfilling a lifetime passion in joining GitHub. He’s now an Architect Solutions Engineer helping customers lead the industry in the way of Version Control and Source Code Management.

Alex Purkiss

Strategic Alliances at GitHub

Alex Purkiss is the Strategic Alliances lead for GitHub in EMEA.  An industry veteran and evangelist, he started his IT career in IBM.  A long career has included major roles at at Documentum and EMC.  Since 2016 he has worked for GitHub inc, the world leading web hosted and on prem code collaboration platform.

About ARCAD Software

CreaARCAD Group logoted in 1992, the ARCAD Software group is leading international vendor in integrated DevOps and Enterprise Modernization solutions, with subsidiaries in Europe, USA and Asia, supporting 1000+ installations across 35 countries. ARCAD solutions are distributed by IBM worldwide.  ARCAD’s DevOps technology is positioned in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Application Release Automation (ARA).

North America – ARCAD Software Inc.
1 Phoenix Mill Lane, Suite 203
Peterborough NH 03458
Toll free: 800.676.4709
Phone: 603.371.9074
sales-us@arcadsoftware.com
Europe – ARCAD Software
55, rue Adrastée – Parc Altaïs- F-74650 Chavanod/Annecy
Phone: +33 450 578 396
sales-eu@arcadsoftware.com
Asia – ARCAD Software Asia
Room 22, Smart-Space 3F – Units 908-915, Level 9, Cyberport 3
100 Cyberport Road – Hong Kong
Phone: +852 3618 6118
sales-asia@arcadsoftware.com

2018-09-04T09:39:18+00:00 On-demand Webinars|

Gartner’s Magic Quadrant – DOT-Anonymizer – DevOps

ARCAD is currently experiencing what is surely the greatest transformation in its history.  The most significant symbol of this change is our official entry into the Gartner’s famous Magic Quadrant in the “Application Release Automation” category.  Some may point out that we should be aiming for another area of the quadrant, but we see this as only the beginning, and a recognition of our potential.  We are also aware that it is very rare for a French vendor to be selected.  We are proud to be seen as major player in Release Management, which is, and will always be, at the very heart of our business.

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2018-03-22T17:53:13+00:00 Miscellaneous|

With the recent security breach at Equifax…

With the recent security breach at Equifax, many are concerned with the true security of their critical information.   Your customers and your employees provide you with their imperative information.  It is crucial to ensure that this information is as secure a possible.  Depending on where your company conducts its business you could be at risk for governmental fines (such as the General Data Protection Regulation, the GDPR) if not complying as well.

ARCAD Software’s DOT-Anonymizer can assist in one more step in helping you, make your data more secure.  Features of DOT-Anonymizer are:

  • Data masking for sensitive information
  • Irreversible anonymization algorithms
  • Preservation of data format and type
  • Anonymized data remains readable and usable for testing
  • Security of test data
  • Ensures compliance in the event of an audit
  • Customized management of fields to be anonymized
  • APIs can be easily integrated into the systems that perform data transfers
  • Extendable algorithm library (scrambling, masking, directories/dictionary, programs, scripts)
  • Works on all operating systems and database types (DB2, ORACLE, MySQL, MongoDB, MariaDB, SQL Server, etc.)
  • Centralized management of all anonymization rules for all databases

Learn more by watching this Webinar on DOT-Anonymizer

Watch the webinar
2017-10-03T14:15:18+00:00 Miscellaneous|

GitHub: How Developers Got to Run the World (sic)

by Olenka Van Schendel | September 27, 2017

GitHub: How Developers Got to Run the World

Of the world’s most visited websites this month, GitHub rates 59 and climbing.  Not bad considering that GitHub’s appeal is limited to software developers whereas the other popular sites like Google and Amazon have a planetary audience.  Is software becoming as important as the written word? (more…)

2018-11-28T19:05:02+00:00 Blog|