When it comes to legacy systems, there are many variables: what hardware you’re using, the legacy operating system running on top of it, and the application(s) running on top of that. You continue to maintain your legacy system for the reason that it is essential to your business. It is likely mission critical, and it enables your employees to accomplish organizational goals.
Yes, there are a lot of variables when it comes to legacy systems. All legacy systems have at least one thing in common, and it’s a very important—perhaps the most important—factor: these legacy systems are aging.
As legacy systems grow older, they become less reliable. The lifetime of the hardware is limited, and the software and applications that run on top of it tend to have substantially longer lifetimes—often as much as three to five times the lifespan of the underlying hardware. You may already be encountering hardware failure or an increased need for hardware support. You may have searched for replacement parts or begun to investigate alternatives. And if you haven’t yet had hardware difficulties, you are aware that it’s only a matter of time.