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ChangeBASE 6.2.2 - Prerequisites and Getting Started Guide


Dell™ ChangeBASE is a leading provider of automated application compatibility analysis, remediation and conversion.

ChangeBASE can assess and fix application compatibility issues automatically prior to migration to the latest Microsoft platforms and virtualized package environments. ChangeBASE also enables you to virtualize your packages automatically.

ChangeBASE is based on a thin client-server model in which most of the processing is carried out by a central service. Compatibility assessment checks against the selected migration platforms are carried out automatically by default, whenever packages are imported into a ChangeBASE database.

ChangeBASE version 6.1 introduces the ability to create links to external data source. This allows you to expand your application assessment to include information on how the applications are being used within the environment. Once the link has been created, it will be maintained and refreshed to ensure that the most up-to-date data is used within custom checks and for reports. Tapping into external data gives you insights to help plan for migration projects.

The guide is intended for network administrators, consultants, analysts, and any other IT professionals who are responsible for setting up ChangeBASE.

Key Phases of a Migration Project

  • Identify: The first step is to identify both the managed and unmanaged packages across the enterprise. Dell™ Asset Manager can be used to perform this step.
  • Plan/Rationalize: Once the packages have been identified, the best practice is to rationalize packages that have similar functionality and/or have multiple versions. This approach means that only the latest versions of software are being submitted to the migration project. Once the number of packages has been defined, the amount of project resources can also be planned.
  • Import and Assess: The list of packages collated during the rationalization phase should be imported into ChangeBASE in order to test compatibility with the target platform(s). The packages are automatically assessed against the relevant checks. Once the compatibility results are visible, packages can undergo another round of rationalization to ensure that effort is only spent on packages that will work on the target platform(s). Incompatible packages should be upgraded, redeveloped or retired.
  • Fix: ChangeBASE assesses packages according to a Red/Amber/Green (RAG) system. ChangeBASE can automatically remediate many Amber issues, and some Red issues, by means of MST (Transform) files. The underlying packages and installations are never modified directly. ChangeBASE can also fix compatibility issues through the use of additional files such as Manifests and runtimes to allow packages to run correctly on the new Platform. By using Transform files, subsequent upgrades or patches can still be applied while allowing you to maintain support for the particular packages.
  • Virtualize: ChangeBASE can automatically create a virtualized package in a number of formats, including Microsoft’s App-V, Symantec Workspace Virtualization (SWV), and VMware’s ThinApp.
  • UAT: The fixed package is now ready for User Acceptance Testing (UAT). Package owners can test in the target environment.
  • Deploy: The package and fixes are deployed to the target environment.
  • Manage: There is a 'Patch Assessment' report that rolls up Microsoft Patch Tuesday updates from July 2013 onwards. When you run the report, it shows the packages in your database on which the updates are likely to have an impact. The current RAG statuses of your applications remain unaffected by the report.

Assessment Capabilities

ChangeBASE provides automated application compatibility testing and fixing for the following:

  • Windows XP, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • Windows 7, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • Windows 8, 32-bit and 64-bit
  • Windows Server 2003 32-bit and 64-bit (including R2)
  • Windows Server 2008 32-bit and 64-bit (including R2)
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Microsoft Office 2007, 2010 and 2013 dependencies
  • MSI Installer Integrity - ICEs (Internal Consistency Evaluators) checking and fixing
  • Microsoft App-V, Microsoft Server App-V, VMware ThinApp, Citrix XenApp and Symantec SWV

Note: Browser Compatibility also allows the automated testing of Web applications for compatibility with Internet Explorer 8, 9 and 10, and Firefox. Refer to Web Capture.

Features and Benefits

  • True Client/Server Model
    • Multi-threaded imports across all the CPU resources in parallel, allowing the import and simultaneous assessment of high volumes of packages.
    • Import from all shared resources across a network, with simultaneous viewing of the assessment results.
  • Instant Multi-Platform Compatibility Assessment
    • Identify compatibility issues instantly on import into ChangeBASE, across a wide range of specified target platforms. So, for example, you can simultaneously see the issues that would be affected by deploying packages on both Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8.1, and arrive at accurate and informed decisions on the timeframes and costs of such deployments, in order to prioritize packages for relicensing, replacement and testing.
    • Repackage non-standard or legacy packages prior to import so that you can test your entire inventory of packages for compatibility issues.
  • Auto-Fix Compatibility Issues
    • Resolve application compatibility issues prior to deployment with minimal manual effort, to avoid repeated assessment cycles and to substantially accelerate package delivery. Reduce post-migration support issues.
  • Virtual Compatibility Assessment
    • Determine which packages you can virtualize within seconds, and track middleware dependencies, saving days of testing time.
  • Package Virtualization
    • Automatically virtualize your packages. Save time, avoid errors and meet demand more quickly than with manual conversions.
  • Auto-Fix for Virtual Platforms
    • Evaluate packages for compatibility issues with virtual target platforms, and fix them in just a few simple steps.
  • Automate Corporate Packaging Standards
    • Test for issues related to in-house and packaging (MSI) standards and apply automated fixes to ensure compliance. Develop and customize QA checks and related remedies in order to achieve significant time and cost savings compared to manual checking.
  • Ongoing Management
    • Introduce changes quickly, easily and reliably, with the highest degree of confidence.

    • Reduce security risks and deployment times by the periodic running of an assessment report that shows the likely impact of past and present Microsoft updates on your package estate.
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