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RE: ASCII support in z/OS

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July 26, 2016 13:30
RE: ASCII support in z/OS
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It depends,
I know I use no ASCII in any scripts (no need for it)  I'm using perl for system usage.   I'm working with z/OS EBCDIC Datasets, RACF and other files that are native EBCDIC. I need my files stored and maintained as EBCDIC.  If it doesn't break that, I have no opinion.   If it breaks that and starts creating files in in ASCII on z/OS then I have a problem.

Websphere is a royal PITA due to its asci support.


-----Original Message-----
From: Yaroslav Kuzmin [] 
Sent: Tuesday, July 26, 2016 7:44 AM
Subject: ASCII support in z/OS

Hi All,

IBM offers  all tools  build with 'ASCII support' for  USS z/OS.

Enhanced ASCII support is a collection of services and options for dealing with the EBCDIC/ASCII problem. :

    Files can be "tagged" (using chtag ) to indicate whether or not they are pure text files, and if they are, the character set (CCSID) used to encode them. The typical values will be "1047" (for ibm-
1047) or "819" (for iso8859-1).
    C/C++ programs can be compiled such that all the character and string constants in the program are compiled into ASCII (or other code page, for that matter), rather than EBCDIC.
    C/C++ programs are marked with a "program CCSID" that indicates the character set the program uses internally. Note that all programs have a program CCSID,
    Given a tagged file, data can automatically be converted from one code page to another when the file is read or written.

    Unix System Services Planning
        Chapter 11 (Converting files between code pages), section "Using Enhanced ASCII" (http://www, provides an overview of how to setup and use Enhanced ASCII support.
    Unix System Services (USS z/OS) Command Reference contains details on these commands:
        chtag - query/change the file type (binary/text) and codeset information for a file.
        ls - the -T flag can be used to display file tag information.
        pax - interchange portable archives. pax can record (on archive) and honor (on restore) file tag information.
        tar - similar to pax. z/OS tar supports processing of file tags.
    XL C/C++ Programming Guide
        Chapter 11 (Performing z/OS UNIX file system I/O operations), section "File tagging and conversion" (
1p273.htm), discusses file tagging, the notion of a program's CCSID, and various facilities related to enhanced ASCII support
        Chapter 32 "Using environment variables" (
BW_2.2.0/ has very good information and descriptions of specific environment variables (see below).

    XL C/C++ Runtime Library Reference
        Appendix B (Function support table), section "Enhanced ASCII support" (
pport/knowledgecenter/en/SSLTBW_2.2.0/ has a good discussion of the feature test macros defined for various levels of enhanced ASCII support and a large table describing the level of support for enhanced ASCII for nearly all runtime functions.
     z/OS Language Environment Programming Reference
        Chapter 2 (Using the Language Environment runtime options) describes the FILETAG runtime option
    z/OS Language Environment Programming Guide
    This manual describes how to control runtime options using environment variables (_CEE_RUNOPTS) and compile-time pragmas (#pragma runopts).

    UNIX System Services z/OS Version 1 Release 7 Implementation Redbook, Chapters 10.13 (Enhanced ASCII functionality), 10.14 (Automatic conversion) and 10.15 (File tagging) are good, but old (2006).

If all tools will work with ASCII support system, the z/OS can use the ISO-8859-1 character set
(ASCII) instead of IBM-1047 (EBCDIC) and is VERY VERY GOOD.

We are now build bash-4.3 and git-2.4.0 with ASCII support , we test these tools. But to complete the work git needed  perl c ASCII support. And so we want to build perl with ASCII support.

So :
 1 how to make a branch hints/ or in file hints/  ?

 2 Should to support two branches perl-zOS-ebcdic и perl-zOS-ascii or only support one perl-zOS- ascii ?

 3 I have the first progress for version perl-zOS-ascii.



Yaroslav Kuzmin
Developer C/C++ ,z/OS , Linux
3 Zhukovskiy Street · Miass, Chelyabinsk region 456318 · Russia
Tel:  +7.922.

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