WebSphere Application Server & Liberty

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What's new in the WebSphere Migration Tools

By Liam Westby posted Fri June 10, 2022 01:18 PM


After the special release of our Transformation Advisor scanning feature, the WebSphere Application Server Migration Tools are back with a regularly-scheduled release. These tools provide you with the ability to analyze the contents of your application and determine what changes may be needed to get that application running on Liberty, move it to a newer release of WebSphere traditional, or even run it on a new version of Java.

If you're looking for information on how to use these tools, browse the WebSphere Application Server Migration Toolkit documentation. If you're looking for an introduction to application modernization with Liberty, follow the Modernizing applications to use WebSphere Liberty learning path.

The tools are comprised of the Migration Toolkit for Application Binaries (binary scanner) command-line tool and the Migration Toolkit for Application Source (source scanner) Eclipse plug-in. This quarter's release focuses on the binary scanner, with several improvements to application scanning and reports. Give them a try!

Inventory Optimizations and Improvements

We updated the Inventory report scan to look more closely at your application and better identify archives that aren't needed by your code. These updates also reduced overall scan time: while scan time depends on many factors (including the size of an archive), our testing has found the release to generate inventory reports of some larger applications 15% faster than earlier releases!

A screenshot of an inventory report file structure compared between binary scanner and In's report, more archives are annotated as

In this example, the scan identifies multiple unused archives that the scan did not flag. Unused modules are annotated with a (5).

These improvements will lead to better advice and quicker reports when using the binary scanner's --inventory, --all, --all-separate-reports, or --ta scans.

JAX-RPC Conversion Tool Pre-validation

This year IBM released the new WebSphere Liberty JAX-RPC Conversion Tool  to validate and convert applications that use JAX-RPC into applications that use JAX-WS using byte-code modification. The JAX-RPC Conversion Tool is available to licensed WebSphere Application Server Liberty users.

In, we've integrated the validation functionality of that tool directly into the Analysis scan to give you immediate feedback if your application is a candidate for conversion by the tool.

A screenshot of an analysis report showing a rule

Now, with one Analysis scan, you can see if your application uses JAX-RPC technologies that will need to be replaced to run on Liberty and whether those technologies can be automatically replaced using the JAX-RPC Conversion Tool. You can use this feature to identify JAX-RPC applications that are closer to running on Liberty than expected. We've also updated the relevant Analysis rules and help text to explain how to use the JAX-RPC Conversion Tool.

These improvements apply when using the binary scanner's --analyze, --evaluate, --all, --all-separate-reports, and --ta scans when the target application server is Liberty.