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I built a real-time ERP software for a client that has been running since the last 3 years.

The front end of the project is a Windows Forms desktop application built in VB.NET (in Visual Studio 2017). And the back-end is in MS SQL Server 2016.

The project has around a hundred reports developed in SAP Crystal Reports and the output dataset of each report comes from a stored procedure created in the back-end SQL Server database.

Now I want to convert this project into a web application that will run in a web browser. While the database will remain the same, no change is required in database.

I know that a Windows Forms desktop application cannot be converted directly to a browser-based web application, I will have to do a new development and coding.
But there will be no change in algorithm and business logic as this project meets the client's requirement 100%, so the only thing is to convert the project to a browser-based web application from a Windows Form desktop application. All the modules, features and functions will remain the same with appropriate interface changes and enhancements.

And I also want all the reports in the new web application to be designed in the same way as they are in the old desktop application because the client runs all their business on the basis of these reports.

Now what would be the best platform for me to convert (redevelop) the front-end interface of my Windows Form desktop application into a web application including all reports without making any changes to the database.

What I have tried:

I did not try for my required conversion.
Updated 2-Oct-23 3:41am

1 solution

It really depends now how you wrote the original application - if it's organised as separate modules: Presentation Layer, Business Layer, and Data Layer as separate Assemblies for example then it should be pretty simple to just respecify the PL and recode for the Client browser instead of Winforms.

If it isn't, and all the code is mixed together in one assembly then it's probably going to be a PITA to separate out the BL and DL stuff as it's likely to be very dependant on the PL controls and often is coded into the control event handlers directly.

In the later case, I'd start with a conversion of the existing app into a modular form still running as a WinForms application (so it's easy to both test and "parallelize" the eventual Web and Windows applications with regard to changes mods and bug fixes.

When that's sorted, you are in a good position to add a second PL for your web version to the new specification.

The alternative is to just spec up and write a new app from scratch, with "glances" at the original code as needed to sort out the algorithms and data use. But that would be a pretty major job for any significant sized existing app.

But ... you know your code, and we have no access - so it's going to be your decision.
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Maciej Los 1-Oct-23 8:10am    

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