Vintages (VSO) is the name of the fine wine and premium spirits business unit of the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO). The Vintages website may be viewed at this link.
The project was launched by QLogitek in 2011 to make a wide-ranging set of enhancements to the LCBO’s web-based Vintages sales site. The system uses a Microsoft SQL Server database and runs under the Microsoft .NET environment (the programming language is C#). It also interfaces with an Oracle database that is part of the LCBO’s internal warehouse application.
My role has been to lead the Quality Assurance team. As this system handles a high dollar value of orders each year, it is of great importance to the LCBO. The Quality Assurance team is tasked with ensuring that any defects introduced by the changes are caught and resolved prior to passing the application to the client for acceptance testing.
I had designed and developed custom test case management and defect tracking software for a previous QLogitek project. I modified this system in order to support the unique testing requirements of the Vintages project. The system itself runs on open source software, specifically, the PHP scripting language, and the MySQL database management system.
This application was originally developed by another company. The application was written using the Java programming language and all records were stored in an Oracle database. After several years of development, VSO was still not ready for production use.
In 2008, I shared responsibility for evaluating the above application for conversion to Microsoft .NET (C#) and Microsoft SQL Server 2005. The conversion was approved by the LCBO and the task of rewriting and implementing the system was given to QLogitek. The replacement system incorporated performance and security best practices gained from working with the PCI Level 1-compliant payment system described elsewhere on this site (see “Merchant Payment Portal”).
In addition, we uncovered numerous defects and security flaws in the original system. The rewrite was completed in months (the original system had been in development for several years).
I wrote batch processes to synchronize the content of the online application with an Oracle back-end warehouse database located at the LCBO. I also wrote software to convert the old Oracle database (data and database table definitions) to the new SQL Server 2005 database prior to the beginning of development.
The replacement system has been in production since the Fall of 2008.