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THE DATA CENTER NEWSLETTER NUMBER 200 AUGUST 2006
OPERATING SYSTEM UPGRADE: A SKIP AND A JUMP
The Data Center recently distributed the following message to
is a publication of the
various Help Desks and posted it on our Web site:
“The Data Center continues to test a new release of the enterprise
server’s operating system software. We currently use Version 1,
Office of Technology
Release 4 of z/OS. Version 1, Release 7 is pending.
“We have made good progress in preparing for the new release,
but considering the remaining tasks and the forthcoming annual
disaster recovery test (when we need to have a stable
Joe Manchin III
environment), we have decided that Version 1, Release 4 of z/OS
will remain in production until sometime after the October 7-10,
2006, disaster recovery test.”
Robert W. Ferguson, Jr.
That wasn’t an idle comment about good progress: we really have
been doing well with the new release. But the DR exercise is the
toad in our road. There are just enough loose ends on the new
Chief Technology Officer
release that we won’t be finished by mid-September, when we
have to “freeze” our software products at their existing release
Helen K. Wilson
levels. Either that, or risk wholesale confusion during the test.
CIO, Department of
We systems folk are not an adventurous lot. We have seen the
fruits of IT misadventures. We will exercise caution in this case,
too, i.e. we will continue to work on the upgrade for the next
Manager, Data Center
several weeks, pause for the DR exercise, then resume work on
the upgrade in mid-October.
COBOL TEST JCL PROCEDURES AVAILABLE
email@example.com Following is the text of a recent memo from Mart Denison, Data
Center manager, to selected IT contacts.
“The Data Center has installed a new version of the COBOL Compiler. The new version is
called Enterprise Cobol for z/OS, Version 3.4.1. In order to begin testing the product, we need to
provide the users with a list of changes/enhancements and test procedures (Procs) to execute the
“I have attached two exhibits:
“Exhibit A is a summary of the major changes to Enterprise COBOL since we last upgraded the
“Exhibit B is a list of Batch, CICS and DB2 procedures that may be used to test the software.
You will notice the columns on the left marked “Current Proc” and “Test Proc”. Current Proc is
the name of the current supported procedure name and Test Proc is an equivalent procedure with
the new software.
“Please share this information with your workgroup. It is critical that all users test their COBOL
programs using the new compiler. If you, or they, have any questions or encounter any problems
with the new release or procedures please call Dave Nearhoof at 558-5914 ext. 8903.
“Unless there are numerous problems during the test period, we plan to change all current
COBOL procedures to use the new compiler on September 24, 2006.
“Thank you for your cooperation. ”
Following are the two exhibits referred to in the memo:
MAJOR CHANGES TO ENTERPRISE COBOL
Summary of Changes:
Following are the major changes that have been made to the Enterprise COBOL for z/OS
product since IBM COBOL for OS/390 & VM Version 2 Release 2. Technical changes are
marked in the text by a change bar in the left margin.
Version 3 Release 4, July 2005
• | Several limits on COBOL data-item size have been significantly raised,
| for example:
o | The maximum data-item size has been raised from 16 MB to 128 MB.
o | The maximum PICTURE symbol replication has been raised to
o | The maximum OCCURS integer has been raised to 134,217,727.
| This support facilitates programming with large amounts of data, for
o | DB2/COBOL applications that use DB2 BLOB and CLOB data types
o | COBOL XML applications that parse or generate large XML documents
• | Support for national (Unicode UTF-16) data has been enhanced. Several
| additional kinds of data items can now be described implicitly or
| explicitly as USAGE NATIONAL:
o | External decimal (national decimal) items
o | External floating-point (national floating-point) items
o | Numeric-edited items
o | National-edited items
o | Group (national group) items, supported by the GROUP-USAGE
| NATIONAL clause
• | Many COBOL language elements support the new kinds of UTF-16 data, or
| newly support the processing of national data:
o | Numeric data with USAGE NATIONAL (national decimal and national
| floating point) can be used in arithmetic operations and in any
| language constructs that support numeric operands .
o | Edited data with USAGE NATIONAL is supported in the same language
| constructs as any existing edited type, including editing and
| de-editing operations associated with moves .
o | Group items that contain all national data can be defined with the
| GROUP-USAGE NATIONAL clause, which results in the group behaving
| as an elementary item in most language constructs. This support
| facilitates use of national groups in statements such as STRING,
| UNSTRING, and INSPECT.
o | The XML GENERATE statement supports national groups as receiving
| data items, and national-edited, numeric-edited of USAGE NATIONAL,
| national decimal, national floating-point, and national group
| items as sending data items.
o | The NUMVAL and NUMVAL-C intrinsic functions can take a national
| literal or national data item as an argument.
| Using these new national data capabilities, it is now practical to
| develop COBOL programs that exclusively use Unicode for all
| application data.
• | The REDEFINES clause has been enhanced such that for data items that
| are not level 01, the subject of the entry can be larger than the data
| item being redefined.
• | A new compiler option, MDECK, causes the output from
| library-processing statements to be written to a file .
• | DB2 coprocessor support has been enhanced. COBOL zoned decimal (USAGE
| DISPLAY SIGN LEADING SEPARATE) data items and numeric Unicode (USAGE
| NATIONAL SIGN LEADING SEPARATE) data items can be used as DB2 host
| variables. The characters "@", "#", and "$" can be used in EXEC SQL
| INCLUDE file names. XREF is improved.
• | The literal in a VALUE clause for a data item of class national can be
| alphanumeric .
Version 3 Release 3, February 2004
• XML support has been enhanced. A new statement, XML GENERATE, converts the
content of COBOL data records to XML format. XML GENERATE creates XML
documents encoded in Unicode UTF-16 or in one of several single-byte EBCDIC or
ASCII code pages.
• The compiler has been enhanced to support new or improved features of Debug Tool:
o Performance is improved when you use COBOL SYSDEBUG files.
o You can more easily debug programs that use national data: When you display
national data in a formatted dump or by using the Debug Tool LIST command,
the data is automatically converted to EBCDIC representation using the code page
specified in the CODEPAGE compiler option. You can use the Debug Tool
MOVE command to assign values to national data items, and you can move
national data items to or from group data items. You can use national data as a
comparand in Debug Tool conditional commands such as IF and EVALUATE.
o You can debug mixed COBOL-Java applications, COBOL class definitions, and
COBOL programs that contain object-oriented syntax.
• DB2 Version 8 SQL features are supported when you use the integrated DB2
• The syntax for specifying options in the COBJVMINITOPTIONS environment variable
Version 3 Release 2, September 2002
• The OPTIMIZE compiler option is now fully supported for programs containing object-
oriented syntax for Java interoperability.
• How Unicode and EBCDIC code pages are specified when using SQL statements in
COBOL programs has been enhanced:
o When Unicode host variables (declared with USAGE NATIONAL) are used in
SQL statements, it is no longer necessary to specify the Unicode CCSID (1200)
explicitly for the variables using the SQL DECLARE VARIABLE statements.
o The CCSID in effect through the CODEPAGE compiler option now applies to
single- or double-byte EBCDIC host variables used in SQL statements without
explicit SQL DECLARE VARIABLE statements for the host variables.
Version 3 Release 1, November 2001
• Because of support for POSIX threads and asynchronous signal toleration, an application
can contain COBOL programs running in multiple threads within a process. The new
compiler option in support of threads and asynchronous signal toleration is:
• A new national data type, national literals, intrinsic functions, and two new compiler
options provide basic runtime support for Unicode. The new compiler optio n in support
of the interoperation of symbols used in literals and PICTURE clauses is:
The new compiler option in support of national data types and literals is:
• Object-oriented syntax now facilitates the interoperation of COBOL and Java programs.
• Basic XML capabilities are added to COBOL.
• The CICS translator has been integrated with the compiler. The new compiler option in
support of integrated CICS translation is:
Test JCL Procedures
Current Test Pre
Procname Procname Description Batch CICS DB2 Compiler Translator
COBC COB34C Batch Compile Y N N N N
COBCG COB34CG Batch Compile and Go Y N N N N
COBCL COB34CL Batch Compile and Link Y N N N N
COBCLG COB34CLG Batch Compile, Link and Y N N N N
DFHTSCOB DFHTST34 CICS Translate, Compile N Y N N Y
DFHTSCOI DFHTS34I CICS Translate, Compile N Y N N Y
and Link with InterTest
None DFHTSC34 CICS Compile and Link N Y N N N
DSNHTSCI DB2TSITO CICS Transaction Server N Y Y Y Y
with InterTest using the
original DB2 pre-
compiler and CICS
None DB2TSIT CICS Transaction Server N Y Y N N
with InterTest using the
DB2 coprocessor and
integrated CICS translator
DSNHTSCO DB2TSO CICS Transaction Server N Y Y Y Y
without InterTest using
the original DB2 pre-
compiler and CICS
Current Test Pre
Procname Procname Description Batch CICS DB2 Compiler Translator
None DB2TS CICS without InterTest N Y Y N N
using the DB2
integrated CICS translator
DSNHCOM DB2BATO DB2 Batch with original Y N Y Y N
None DB2BATCH DB2 Batch with DB2 Y N Y N N
The CICS translator is built into the COBOL compiler, therefore there is no need for the translate
step prior to the COBOL step. You can still use the translate step if you wish and your compile
will continue to work as usual. In order to take advantage of the built- in translator you must
change a couple of items.
1. The // PARM.COB override DD card must use the compiler parameter CICS(“…”).
Insert the translator overrides inside the quotes.
2. Because you are not using the Translator, you will need to use //COB.SYSIN DD…
instead of //TRN.SYSIN DD… for the source input to the compiler.
//STEP1 EXEC DFHTSC34,PARM.COB='NONUMBER,MAP,OFFSET,XREF,CICS("SP")'
The NOOPT parameter is no longer supported and results in a translator return code of 4.
It is now possible to perform DB2 precompile functions with either the traditional DB2
precompiler or using the COBOL SQL statement coprocessor. The coprocessor performs
DB2 precompiler functions at compile time. In addition, the SQL statement coprocessor lifts
some of the DB2 precompiler’s restrictions on SQL programs.
The procedures DB2TSIT, DB2TS, and DB2BATCH no longer require the DB2 precompiler
and/or the CICS translator steps but they do require COBOL parameter changes. If you override
the procedure parameters or make a copy of one of these procedures, please be aware of the
impact of modifying the SQL and CICS parameters.
If you are not using one of the new Data Center supplied compile procedures and you wish to
take advantage of the COBOL SQL statement processor, please modify your jobstream in the
1) remove the pre-compile step (EXEC DSNHPC)
2) remove any PARM.PC DD override cards
3) Add the COB parameter ‘SQL(“….”)’
// PARM.COB=(APOST,NONUMBER,LIB,'SQL("HOST(COB2) APOST APOSTSQL")')
For more information on these and other parameters please refer to the DB2 UDB for OS/390
and z/OS V7 Application Programming and SQL Guide, CICS TS for z/OS: CICS Application
Programming Guide, and Enterprise COBOL for z/OS V3.4 Programming Guide.
Here are the links for your convenience:
The DB2 v7 library can be found @
DB2 UDB for OS/390 and z/OS V7 Application Programming and SQL Guide is @
The CICS v2.2 library can be found @
CICS Application Programming Guide is @
Enterprise COBOL for z/OS V3.4
DATING THE DR TEST
The Data Center recently sent memos to select user-agency IT contacts, inviting them to One
Davis Square on September 19 to hear our plans for this year’s disaster recovery exercise.
We will hold an all- inclusive pre-test conference call with SunGard Availability Services about a
week before, on September 13. (It may seem odd for SunGard to put so much store in one
telephonic meeting, but they assemble a large cast, they’re much-practiced, and they know what
As noted here last month, the annual mainframe systems / campus backbone network disaster
recovery exercise will start at 8:00 a.m., Saturday, October 7, and end at 8:00 a.m., Tuesday,
October 10. We have been busily preparing for the test, everything from paperwork to network
engineering. So far, so good.
NEW VERSION OF QUICK-REF AVAILABLE
The Data Center rolled out a new version of the MVS/Quick-Ref database on August 29th. The
new version includes the most recent messages and codes for products running on the
mainframe, such as language syntax for TSO CLIST, REXX, COBOL, JCL, etc.
Quick-Ref has proven to be a popular tool with applications folk and systems folk alike.
NANCY STARK: ADMIN EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH
The Department of Administration recently issued the following press release:
“Nancy Stark, a Program Analyst II for the Office of Technology, is our August Employee of
the Month. A 10-year employee of state government, Nancy is responsible for computer
programming, for which she designs and troubleshoots programs for various agencies. She also
assists in the training of agency personnel.”
Nancy was honored at a special ceremony at 11 a.m. on Thursday, August 3, 2006, at the Office
of Technology’s One Davis Square location. Among the attendees was Nancy’s mother,
Josephine Fish. Josephine was the Data Center’s secretary for many years, and mother to us all.
We were thrilled to see her again.
Congratulations, Nancy. Your mother is proud of you. We all are.
UPS & DOWNS
The enterprise server system experienced no unscheduled outages during the month of July.
There were isolated problems, of course, but not many. We’ve noted over the years that we tend
to have fewer problems during the dog days. Must be the thick air and sluggishness.
Our primary mail inserter system failed repeatedly, for various reasons. Pitney Bowes
technicians performed considerable service on the system, and we hope we’re past this wave of
trouble. We can’t be confident about that. Such systems are complex, ultra- mechanical, and
surprisingly sensitive. We’ve relied heavily on our old backup inserter this summer
CICS region RK ? a DHHR region ? failed to come up on the morning of Wednesday, July 26.
We had made a cataloging error, but once DHHR alerted us to the problem we quickly corrected
it. The region was back up before 8:00 a.m.
WHAT & WHEN
New COBOL rolling to production September 24
User-testing of V1R7 of the enterprise server’s October-November
z/OS operating system
Annual disaster recovery exercise October 7-10
Shared Logic on the Web: www.state.wv.us/admin/isc/slogic/defaultf.htm
Data Center on the Internet: http://wvisc.state.wv.us