Taffe SA transitions from ACUCOBOL-GT to COBOL-IT



Marine insurance



Online and Batch Programs


COBOL-IT Solutions :

COBOL-IT Compiler Suite Enterprise Edition



HP Server, Dual Core / SCO UNIX



HP Server, Dual Core / Linux Red-Hat 4







Taffe SA, French Marine Insurance Broker since 1851, selected COBOL-IT running on RedHat Linux as a replacement to ACU-COBOL-GT running in SCO UNIX. Taffe SA sought to rehost their application after both ACUCOBOL-GT and SCO UNIX announced end of support. The COBOL-IT Compiler Suite allowed them to preserve existing functionality, while achieving considerable cost savings.

“With the help of SOGETI and the COBOL-IT Technical team, Taffe SA was able to successfully transition from ACUCOBOL-GT to COBOL-IT, retaining all of the functionality of our application, without having to endure any down time.”, said Lionel Taffe, Managing Director of Taffe, SA.

Taffe, SA

Taffe, SA is has been providing consultancy and marine insurance out of Marseille since 1851. Taffe, SA evaluates their Customers’ needs for insurance on both the goods they are shipping, and on their Ship’s hull and machinery. Taffe, SA then takes out insurance policies with leading providers in the French, European and International markets on their Customers’ behalf. In addition to securing the necessary Insurance policies, Taffe SA also provides their Customers with services in the area of legal defense, to further protect their Customers, and further minimize the financial consequences of Claims when they do occur. providing services for over 150 years in the Marseille area, Taffe, SA prides themselves on their competitive prices, and responsive agents. Taffe, SA is a member of the ASSUREX GLOBAL insurance broker network.

Taffe’ software application

Taffe’s software application stored data in a C-ISAM file system, and interfaced with the UNIPLEX suite of Office Management software products. Their application was hosted on an SCO UNIX operating system, and was compiled with the ACUCOBOL-GT compiler. The application, initially developed in 1981, started using the ACUCOBOL-GT compiler in the early 1990’s. The ACUCOBOL-GT graphical technology was not used.

Critical to the success of the conversion were compatibility, performance, and interoperability with C-ISAM and UNIPLEX. COBOL-IT proved to be highly compatible, and provided excellent performance. COBOL-IT engineered support for C-ISAM through EXTFH, and no data migration was required, though Taffe SA was required to upgrade their C-ISAM to the latest version prior to performing the transition to the COBOL-IT Compiler Suite. The interface with UNIPLEX was not problematic.

Simultaneous end-of-Life pressures force move

Since the bankruptcy of SCO UNIX was announced, COBOL providers started to reduce their support for the operating system, which had been a very popular choice for cost conscious ISVs for years. ACUCOBOL-GT, owning the largest share of the COBOL market in SCO UNIX, continued to provide support, but eventually end-of-lifed support for the operating system, which was no longer supported by the vendor.

COBOL-IT proved to provide the best value, considering the low price, and highly responsive and expert technical staff.

Taffe SA considered rewriting their application, but determined that a move to another COBOL compiler on another operating vsystem would be preferable. COBOL-IT was selected largely on the basis of cost, but Taffe, SA attributed the success of the migration to the high performance of the software, responsive service of the technical teams, and required interoperability with C-ISAM and UNIPLEX. Taffe SA completed the transition to COBOL-IT running on an HP Server with RedHat Linux 4, C-ISAM, and UNIPLEX, in less than a year.

The decision to use COBOL-IT

With the end-of-life of both SCO UNIX and ACUCOBOL-GT, Taffe needed to find a low-cost solution that would meet their performance and interoperability requirements. The most obvious choice, Micro Focus, was not feasible for budgetary reasons.

COBOL-IT proved to provide the best value, considering the low price, and highly responsive and expert technical staff. Questions were answered quickly, and when requested, technical staff aided by making a connection to the development network from Brussels, and providing expert assistance. Neither interoperability nor performance ever surfaced as a problem.

COBOL-IT provides cost-effective solutions to smaller companies

“COBOL-IT can provide cost-effective solutions to small ISVs as well as large corporate end-users… We spent some time with the customer making sure that their data connection was completely supported, and some time on minor compatibility issues, but other than that, the conversion went quite smoothly. Taffe SA achieved their goal of preserving all of their existing functionality with a new compiler on a new operating system, and saved a considerable amount of money.”

Stephane Croce, CEO of COBOL-IT.


ChallengeSolutionCustomer Benefits
End of life of Compiler for Operating System no longer supported by vendor.Migrate to COBOL-IT Compiler Enterprise Edition, running on an HP Server with RedHat Linux 4.Preserve functionality, with no downtime.
Save money with Open Source solutions.
Data stored in C-ISAM file system, accessed through proprietary file system interface.Use COBOL-IT’s EXTFH interface to interface with the latest version of the C-ISAM file system.No data migration necessary. C-ISAM upgrade done on ACUCOBOL-GT system prior to change of compiler and OS.
Replicate all functionality, with equivalent or better performance.Heavy benchmarking of COBOL-IT solutions, both for data-intensive, and computationally intensive modules.Limit migration risks.