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RE: Re: [open-cobol-list] cobol compilation

From: William M. Klein
Subject: RE: Re: [open-cobol-list] cobol compilation
Date: Mon Dec 8 18:32:02 2003

The "valid" values for Special-Names "thingies" is at: 

I asked in one of the IBM mainframe groups exactly what "Skip to Channel
1-12" means or what "Pocket select 1-5 on punch devices" means - where these
are documented.  The following is the (semi-)useful reply that I received.

">I know that these are "historical" features - but I was wondering if
>could point me to WHICH manual (in the IBM bookshelves) would actually
>"describe" these features?
couple of places:
In SC26-7408 DFSMS Macro Instructions for Data Sets, see Appendix C,
"Control Characters".  This is what those Cobol options translate to.
In SC26-7414 DFSMSdfp Utilities, see the descriptoin of IEBIMAGE to
create a FCB (forms control buffer).
In SC26-7400 DFSMSdfp Advanced Services, see the references to FCB.

Brief history, since the manuals for the printers and punches that led
to the terminology are no longer in print:
for punches, it is pretty obvious: they had several pockets for punched
cards, you could direct each card to a specific pocket.
for printers, the early printers, e.g., 1403, had a paper "carriage"
tape for forms control, with 12 channels (columns) on it, and a row for
each line on the printed paper.
A punch in channel 1 indicated the "top of form", first line of the
page, and the length of the tape defined the length of the page (e.g.,
66 lines for standard paper).  Other channels were used on special forms
to position to specific places on the form.  You could also sense that a
punched channel was passed, and channel 12 was usually used to indicate
"bottom of form".  Occasionally the tape would wear out and break, with
sometimes spectaciular results like feeding a whole box of paper without
stopping.  Woe to the operator who didn't have a spare carriage tape
ready to go.
The fallable paper tape was replaced with a software FCB which serves
the same function.  When mounting a special printer form, you can
specify the FCB to use.

In Cobol, SKIP TO CHANNEL 1 would position to top of page, other
channels would be used only for specially designed forms."

> -----Original Message-----
> From: address@hidden 
> [mailto:address@hidden On 
> Behalf Of David Korn
> Sent: Sunday, November 30, 2003 11:51 PM
> To: address@hidden
> Cc: address@hidden
> Subject: Re: Re: [open-cobol-list] cobol compilation
> > > 004500 SPECIAL-NAMES.  C01 IS NEW-PAGE.
> > > The IBM Cobol manual says the C01-C012 means skip to 
> channel 1 through
> > > 12 respectively.
> > Sorry for late reply, but what is "channel 1"?
> I assume that it is the carraige control character for the printer and
> that NEW-PAGE would cause a 1 to be written in column 1
> so that it will cause a form feed.   I beleive that the asa
> program defined by the posix fortran extension converts 
> channel control
> characters to unix control characters.
> David Korn
> address@hidden
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