GUI tools combine to speed Java migration

Getting into the Java migration business wasn't something Imperial Software Technology (IST), Palo Alto, Calif., had planned on. But in the midst of an industry-wide push to move legacy applications over to Java, the company found that its 12-year-old X-Designer utility had some new and unexpected uses in that area.

''We added a capability that allows you to take the user interface from an existing application, pull it into X-Designer's GUI-builder environment and then generate code from it,'' said Neil Smyth, director of business development at IST. ''And we suddenly realized we had a migration solution on our hands.'' Classes provide Java equivalents to toolkit features that are unique to Motif.

Smyth said the utility allows for the rapid and automated conversion of legacy C/C++/Motif-based applications to the Java platform by recreating both the user interface and the needed back-end code. Developers have the option of maintaining back-end code in familiar C/C++ formats.

Also in the works is a migration solution for companies who want to move Windows-based applications over to Linux, which, Smyth says, should be out in six months.

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