A management and IT consultancy from Munich harmonizes, consolidates and migrates all applications of a large group to accelerate digitization.This management and IT consulting firm is responsible for all IT services of an internationally active insurance group and manages several units worldwide with almost 270,000 employees. It uses offered synergies and potentials as well as cooperation to establish standards for IT services.
In order to go one step further and work agile in a standardized form and to harmonize the delivery processes, an IT master platform was introduced 3 years ago. All applications / tools, including XRAY - the testing tool for IT projects with JIRA - have to be migrated to the master platform. Parallel to various important development projects, these migration projects should take place smoothly and transparently.
A team from anarcon (now part of Scandio) was entrusted with implementing this requirement.
Perfect integration of XRAY on the global platform - without manual resources
XRAY has been used in the group for a long time. XRAY is one of the leading quality assurance and test management apps for Jira and covers the entire test life cycle: test planning, test specification, test execution, and test reporting. XRAY uses Jira's own activity types such as test, test plan, test set, and test execution for seamless integration with Jira.
XRAY issues were generated in various projects and in various Jira instances. The content of these various issues should be migrated sequentially from local instances to the master platform into a new target structure. The solution should be able to transfer all issues directly and automatically (without manual processing for export/import) without downtime during ongoing operations.
Furthermore, the different target instances should be structured according to the running projects and should not hinder the work of the teams in the meantime. The quality of the original XRAY issues should be 100 percent available in the target instance to ensure the ongoing operation of the projects.
The biggest challenge was to migrate all data, not forgetting anything and not migrating duplicate values. XRAY extends Jira with the following issue types: Precondition, Test Set, Test Plan, Test Execution and XRAY Sub Test Execution. In addition, XRAY provides a so-called Test Repository in Jira. Each issue type just mentioned is structured differently and has different data, which had to be downloaded for the migration, temporarily stored in the script and finally uploaded to the new instance.
A script for automation
As a solution, the experts from anarcon/Scandio created a script using Python to automate this export/import. With that, the XRAY issues were downloaded from each instance and re-imported on the master platform. The automation allowed the transfer of 15,000 issues in about 4–5 hours. The entire process was implemented overnight, so it went completely unnoticed by the teams.
During the development of the script, a concept was developed to ensure that even in case of a server failure, the script would recognize which data had already been migrated and would not create duplicates when the script was restarted.
Using the Configuration Manager plug-in, the XRAY projects were migrated piece by piece from one instance to the other. However, the "Configuration Manager" cannot migrate XRAY-specific data, which is why the target instance initially contains XRAY issues without content after the migration. This is where the script comes in.
The script fetches the XRAY-specific data for each XRAY issue from the source instance and stores it internally. If the keys of the projects should have changed between the source and target instance, this can be specified in the script and the script changes the keys of the issues automatically and finally uploads the XRAY data into the target instance under the new project key.
Benefits and advantages
- No downtime
- Reduction of manual effort (export of XRAY data per issue as a CSV file and import of the CSV file into the target instance)
- Speed of processing, preservation of data quality as no manual errors can occur as the script runs fully automated
Conclusion & Outlook
The IT consulting company relies on the automation processes implemented by Scandio (formerly anarcon), especially when dealing with complex technical structures such as an international context or different formats in different countries.
The consulting firm will therefore continue to harmonize and migrate other tools with Scandio. The challenges are manifold and depend on the strategic decisions, the tools used, and the schedules to be considered for migrations and releases.
We already provides support as part of IT project management, brings the necessary experience and expertise for the planned digitization and, as a point of excellence with Jira, can ensure a fully automated and secure connection for all units.
Then read how our Atlassian expert Angela helps Germany's largest university work with XRAY. To the article!