Two Days Reviving Legacy Code Workshop

Often developers shy away from making changes to existing (legacy) code base due to the fear of breaking existing functionality. While the team agrees that refactoring is the only solution, no one wants to take charge. Refactoring code without having automated tests can be scary. And quite often, it ends up being an egg-and-chicken problem. .i.e. to write tests one needs to refactor the code. But to refactor the code, we first need tests.

This hands-on workshop will equip you with the necessary skills to confront legacy code. It teaches you how to use Test Driven Development and Refactoring practices to add new code to existing systems and make existing code more maintainable. Learn how to use an IDE to perform safe refactoring, while breaking dependencies and writing first few tests. These techniques are very useful to get existing code safely under test for refactoring. Learn to use these techniques in conjunction with TDD to breathe new life into large existing code bases.

The Legacy Code Workshop teaches how to effectively understand and improve legacy code by offering a hands-on introduction to the tools, tactics and techniques for reviving legacy code.

Legacy Code Long Methods

Legacy Code Stats

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand when to refactor and when to rewrite parts of your legacy system.
  • Learn how to choose from various strategies to confront legacy code.
  • Understand to quickly write characterization or scaffolding tests.
  • Learn how to find and secure an inflection point
  • Pickup refactoring tools/techniques to evolve/improve the design of your code.
  • Learn how to make classes testable by breaking dependency between them.
  • Visualize the health of your codebase using C3.
  • Accommodate changing requirements without the fear of damaging your design.

Code Clean Up Before and After

Course Outline

  • Demo: Using Test as a Probe
  • Testing Concepts and Patterns
    • Unit testing with xUnit
    • Measuring test coverage
    • Test doubles
    • Mocking Frameworks
    • Testing patterns
    • Characterization tests
  • Refactoring Legacy Code
    • Identifying code smells
    • Simplifying code structure
    • Organizing data and methods
    • Simplifying and encapsulating logic
    • Extracting subclasses and interfaces

Legacy Code Complex Code

  • Changing Legacy Code
    • Identifying the change point
    • Finding interception points
    • Breaking internal and external dependencies
    • Writing a scaffolding test
    • Test-Driving the change
    • Removing the scaffolding test
  • Seam Model: Finding or Creating a Seam for Changes
    • Safely Cutting into a Living System
    • Sprout Method
    • Sprout Class
    • Wrap Class
    • Building Seems for Expansion and Testing
  • Using Design Patterns to Break Dependencies
    • Adapter
    • Strategy
    • Command Design Pattern
    • Parameterize constructors and methods
    • Extract and over-ride
    • Self-Shunting
    • Non-OO techniques to break dependencies
    • Hidden and global dependencies
    • Singleton Pattern
    • Inaccessible methods
    • 3rd Party Library dependencies
    • Dealing with constraints imposed by your Framework

Strongly Recommended

  • 1 or 2 Days of Mentoring via Pair Programming with Developers on your code base
    • To get your team kick-started with the learning from the workshop, we recommend, that our trainer spends a day or two, working with your team on your code base.
    • Each day will be reserved for 4 pair programming sessions. During these sessions, the workshop participants will take specific examples from their projects, where they are finding it difficult to apply any of the practices learned in the workshop. The trainer will then pair with an individual to show how to resolve those challenges.
    • At the end of the day, the 4 volunteers will summarize their learning by showing before and after code from their respective pairing session to the rest of the group.
  • Pre-Post Programming Assessment
    • The goal of these programming assessments is to identify real and quantifiable measures for the learning achieved through our workshop.
    • Objective:
      • Get a quick understanding of your knowledge and skill level with respect to Designing & Programming
      • Establish a baseline against which the effectiveness of the workshop may be measured
      • Customize our workshop based on specific areas identified in this assessment
    • Pre-Assessment: Before the workshop, we'll send a problem description, your developers will spend max 4 hours and solve the problem and send us the code. We'll evaluate the code and send you detailed feedback about the code, including areas for improvement. We can send different types of problems (fresh development, cleaning up existing code and so on.)
    • Post-Assessment: 2 week after the workshop, we send another problem and evaluate the solution code. A comparison between the Pre and Post Assessment should be able to clearly quantify per-participant level improvement.
    • Click on the image to download the sample report...

Programming Assessment Sample Report

Method of Instruction

  • Interactive Dialogues, Programming Exercises, Demos, and Instructional Games

Transfer %

  • Knowledge: 40%, Skill-Building: 60%

Target Audience

  • Primary: Sr. Object-Oriented Programmers, Architects, and Designers
  • Secondary: Technical Managers, Business Analysts, Testers, Technical Writers

Course Level

  • Intermediate to Advanced

Course Prerequisites

  • Required: some understanding of OO concepts and an OO language
  • Highly Recommended: basic understanding of the life-cycle of software project

General Requirements

To ensure a successful class, we require the following facilities:

  • VGA projector (1024x768 minimum) & Projector screen
  • 1 White board & Dry erase markers
  • Cluster seating with 5-6 people on each table
  • 1 Flip chart with the stand and marker pens for each table
  • Notepad and Pen for each participant
  • Ample room for students in terms of room size and set up
  • For Dev trainings: at least one powerful workstation between two programmers

Development Tools

Java C# JavaScript C/C++ Ruby PHP Flex

Testimonials

"Inversion of Software Development", that's what Naresh gave me through his 5 days workshop at Amazon. He is one of the best mentors I encountered in my career.

The way he tries to explain TDD and Design principles with practical approaches, always challenging the concepts which we used to think were industry standards. Learning through his workshop, now coding is like blogging, drop dead simple, and you don't look back.

I hope we had more dojos like Naresh mentoring people in Indian Software Industries to let them know what real clean software development is all about. To sum up he instilled the idea - "Perfection isn't the goal, it's the baseline." about software development in me.


-- Rajat Talwar, Software Engineer II, Amazon


I recently met Naresh Jain during Test Driven Development(TDD) training at my current organisation. He is very knowledgeable and also very effective as a trainer. His enthusiasm and confidence is a game-changer when it comes to motivating the workshop participants.

I've really benefited from his training and by applying TDD in my day-to-day work . It was a great experience and I wish, I could get a chance to work with him on a real project.


-- Lokesh Gaur, Technical Lead,Samsung Research


It's been 3 weeks since I had the opportunity to attend a 3-Day TDD workshop followed by a 3-Day Design Patterns workshop by Naresh Jain. Post the workshops; I was able to fully test drive a feature that is already in production.

I had many take-away from his workshops, but the most important ones were - 1. It gave me the confidence that with TDD you can come up with good designs, 2. Learnt refactoring techniques and IDE tricks, 3. Got a deeper understanding of design values, principles and patterns. 4. Identifying code smells (the codes that I was proud of, now all I see there is code smells :P). But thanks to Naresh I know how to make it right.


-- Chandan Kumar, Software Development Engineer, Amazon


Rarely have I met a trainer who was truly hands-on. The depth of knowledge and on-field experience of Naresh Jain is truly inspiring. His proficiency in agile techniques and TDD is bleeding edge.

We have benefited immensely in barely three days of TDD training with him. We wish he was on our team here in EMC2.


-- Vimal Kumar, Principal Software Engineer, EMC2


Recently I attended Naresh's workshop on Test Driven Development (TDD) at Amazon, Hyderabad. It was a great learning experience and an eye-opener in few cases.

He is very involved with the Agile community and has worked with a lot of industry experts. That's the best part of getting trained by him. He is up-to-date with the latest trends and his skills are very relevant.

Naresh's in-depth knowledge and great attitude, fueled by his passion for technology makes him a great techie to work with. I had a great experience and would highly recommend him for training/coaching or even just to have good discussions.


-- Akshay Johri, Software Development Engineer, Amazon

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