Title page for ETD etd-12062003-115402

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Kothapalli, Malini
Author's Email Address mkothapa@vt.edu
URN etd-12062003-115402
Title Automated Conversion of Structured Fortran 77 code Into Object-Oriented C++ Code
Degree Master of Science
Department Computer Science
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Bohn, Jan Helge Committee Chair
Arthur, James D. Committee Co-Chair
Edwards, Stephen H. Committee Member
  • automated conversion
  • legacy code
  • structured
  • object-oriented
Date of Defense 2003-05-08
Availability unrestricted
The maintenance of legacy software systems that were developed using a procedural

design approach is becoming increasingly expensive. The procedural approach is often

ill suited for complex systems that need to integrate with other codes. Furthermore, these

legacy systems are usually written in FORTRAN, for which there is increasingly less

personnel available compared to, say, C++. While it would be desirable to convert these

legacy systems into object-oriented codes described in C++, such a conversion process is

nontrivial. Currently, the structural design must be manually examined, interpreted, and

converted into an object-oriented design described in an object-oriented language.

Therefore, the conversion process is likely to introduce numerous new inconsistencies

and errors, which degrades the software's quality and increases its costs.

The preferred solution would be to automate this conversion process. Automation

would promote consistency by eliminating the manual variations in interpretation and

implementation. It would therefore maximize the likelihood that the converted code does

not introduce new errors relative to the original code.

The work presented here automates the conversion process from procedural

design described in the FORTRAN77 language into object-oriented design described in

the C++ language. It demonstrates the extraction of object-oriented elements using

FORTRAN common block structures and FORTRAN subroutine and function-calling

hierarchies. The result is a consistent, first-cut converted design, which enhances cohesion within classes and reduces coupling between classes. This result is described in

the contemporary, broadly used computer language C++, which integrates with adjacent

modules that might still remain procedural and described in FORTRAN.

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