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Migrate 32 bit to 64 bit

Hello All,

I'm working on a new project with Micro Focus Cobol! Here is what I have:

TWOS is a Time and Work Order Management System developed by Ford. It is written in Micro Focus Cobol and runs on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 11 SP4.

This is what I need:

1. Upgrade the OS to SLES 15 SP1

2. Upgrade the application to the latest version of Micro Focus Cobol

3. Migrate the application from 32 bit to 64 bit

This is what I know:

Micro Focus

1. Visual COBOL installs fully only on 64-bit Windows platforms. On 32-bit Windows, the setup file does not install some of the components.

Visual COBOL enables you to produce both 64-bit and 32-bit applications on 64-bit operating systems.

2. As 64-bit architecture is becoming increasingly prevalent, the consideration of moving towards producing 64-bit applications is also increasing. Many of the major operating system vendors now default to 64-bit support, and whilst still supporting the running of 32-bit applications, have signaled intent to stop supporting the building of 32-bit applications on future platforms. In fact, certain platforms (for example, SUSE SLES 12, service pack 2) are only supported in 64-bit by Micro Focus products.


1. SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for the 64-bit platforms POWER, IBM Z and AMD64/Intel 64 is designed so that existing 32-bit applications run in the 64-bit environment “out-of-the-box.” The corresponding 32-bit platforms are ppc for POWER, and x86 for AMD64/Intel 64. This support means that you can continue to use your preferred 32-bit applications without waiting for a corresponding 64-bit port to become available. The current POWER system runs most applications in 32-bit mode, but you can run 64-bit applications."

If Micro Focus is able to build and deploy 32-bit apps successfully to other 64-bit platforms, then the restriction seems to be on the SLES 15 side, not Micro Focus (unless Micro Focus has purposely decided not to provide certain SLES runtime support during install). If so, what is missing in SLES 15 support?

Here is the current line of thinking as a potential intermediate step in getting to 64-bit:

a. Don't know if in answering the question Micro Focus presumed build environment is same as runtime going forward (SLES 15).
b. If we build the application from a special build machine that supports a 32-bit build (i.e. Windows VDI or other) and deploy to SLES 15, would SLES 15 be able to run in 32-bit mode?
c. If some runtime libraries are missing from SLES 15 that prevents 32-bit execution of Micro Focus, can these libraries be installed from the CLI to make them run?

Thanks for your help!