Patching AngularJS

2021 is a very unusual time to be returning to use AngularJS. This is the version of Angular that is going out of support at the end of this year! However I have a client that has a very large codebase that needs to be moved to the latest stable version before they start the move to a more modern Angular version.

A key feature of AngularJS is that it is built using a dependency injection framework. This means that it is possible to replace parts of the supplied libraries with alternative versions. For this codebase this can mean an older version of one of the system components. For example the $http component changed it’s call interface between 1.5.6 and 1.6.0. It would be great to move the entire codebase to the more standards compliant promise library, but this is just not feasible for the size of the codebase. There are thousands of uses of the old syntax.

This does allow us to take advantage of working on a library that has been abandoned – we know all of the changes that the later versions have made and also know what the replacement looks like. This gives us a chance to look at the direction we need to take the code before we migrate. This is not going to be quick.

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