Case study

Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. moves from PVCS to Dimensions CM for even faster development


The bank realized that it needed a consistent approach for managing software versions, so the firm implemented Micro Focus PVCS. PVCS gave developers a place to store their code, track their changes, and effectively create releases by which the change management group could deploy those changes to both test and production environments.

While PVCS helped this customer streamline version management, after a few years, it realized that it needed a solution that was more integrated with the overall development environment. As development became more distributed, the company also needed a solution that was extremely fast and responsive for globally dispersed team members. While they considered Subversion, the speed and integration capabilities of Micro Focus Dimensions CM were a better fit. And because the company had been using Micro Focus ChangeMan ZMF for mainframe development, using Dimensions CM would help them move closer to a single code repository across all development platforms and environments.


Because of the size and complexity of the history contained in original projects, the IT organization realized that the migration from PVCS to Dimensions CM could be moderately difficult. The conversion tool itself was relatively easy to use, but when dealing with several binary revisions, they knew that the conversion could take a while. In addition, IT had to plan carefully to find the right time to pause development to perform some of the conversions. IT leaders spent the necessary time up front gathering information such as how much history development wanted or needed to carry over to Dimensions, what they could safely retire, and when it could be done, such as off hours or during a weekend. In addition, the company followed these key steps before the migration to Dimensions CM:

  • Prior to any migration, coordination between change management and the respective development was key.
  • All administrators enrolled in Micro Focus training.
  • The company trained those which were being converted a week prior to the conversion and then converted their applications the following week.
  • The company utilized Micro Focus Professional Services to help build out the Dimensions CM environment and customize it to its needs.

Even though Dimensions CM provides a single global repository, the product’s flexibility enables this customer to vary development approaches across teams:

  • Different user interfaces for different users: Most developers primarily use the Dimensions CM web client, but the full client is installed on certain development groups’ desktops so they can take advantage of streaming for concurrent development and Agile methodologies. Dimensions CM also provides integrations with popular IDEs (like IBM Rational Application Developer and Microsoft Visual Studio), so developers have source control and change management capabilities directly in the tools they use.

  • Project versus product breakdown: Administratively, IT would prefer to keep a development group within one product and several projects for each application below the product. However, IT realizes that there are cases where developers need to create multiple products for a single development group, such as keeping Rational Application Developer code separate from Visual Studio.


With Dimensions CM, this customer is already realizing significant benefits with application development. First and foremost is the speed over PVCS. IT is further ramping up developer productivity by improving how developers use version control and how they interact with Dimensions CM via their IDE plugins.

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Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. (BBH) case study

release-rel-2020-7-1-hotfix-4741 | Fri Jul 10 14:28:05 PDT 2020
Fri Jul 10 14:28:05 PDT 2020