Captain
Captain
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Videos on Visual Cobol lacking

Well since i,ve been asking questions about a simple setup, the answers i have received have been very dismal. Go watch the videos. This is like telling a new Stealth Fighter pilot on how to use the Aircraft, to go read up on the Wright brothers page on how to fly a plane. Things changed since those videos, and if you cant get hold of the version of Eclipse with that version of Visual Cobol, you cant follow along. And we should you, there are now major revisions to both of these programs. So here is a simple request, from whomever, A video for beginners, in Micro Focus, how to install it correctly, try and follow the latest manual out there,  the one i followed on how to install it, how it works with one of the later versions of Eclipse, not the Europa version, and how can you access input and output files in Eclipse with the VC Editor, what has to be setup where. Just basic information. Next time you tell someone to watch the videos and get with the program, see if maybe they are not on the same operating system, maybe you are using VC 3 and they are using VC 6, maybe you are using Eclipse Indigo and they are using Jakarta. I would say, be more helpful, and caring, this could help, get more developers to want to join the COBOL JAVA integration migration, as I understand there is a major lack there, not only in people who know legacy COBOL, but even more so, in people who would know how to work with both JAVA and COBOL together using current available tools.

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9 Replies
Micro Focus Expert
Micro Focus Expert

Hello CobolWhiz,

 

Thank you for your feedback on the Visual COBOL for Eclipse in a Nutshell videos on YouTube. It's certainly true that some of the screen layouts have changed in the newer versions of Visual COBOL created since some of the earlier videos were created, and that new features have been added in these newer versions. However, most of the information provided in these videos is still relevant. We are currently looking into updating the videos to reflect changes in the more recent versions of the product.

Blair McDonald

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Captain
Captain

now trust me i know i have been told to watch the videos. indeed they are so so outdated, i have bought every single video known to man on cobol, but there really is nothing out there, that uses the current eclipse, with Micro Focus, or VC, to show you how to use them, writing the simplest programs, with input and output files, how to fix data file with MF  data editor, another big issue, since sometimes the CR and LF causes major      issues, since they are created in a win dos system. also how to connect MF VC to DB2, or even use MF with a connection to IBM Z, using JCL though that not really important. I mean lets get with the program and bring VC back to the future..

Though  im inching along with VC, since yes its really the best out there, right, but nothing out there to guide you, with easy, unless you installed it 5 years ago, and still using that version of VC so VC 3 and some old version on Eclipse, which from the answers im getting here, is most of you.

I still have to do DB2, and maybe TSQL, but even now dealing with files that VC has problems reading, and trying to use the VC data editor was another wreck.

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Captain
Captain

i have all the videos from whats availabe, but most is GNUCOBOL, Z, with mainframe access, there    really isnt a stuctured VC Eclipse program out there, for todays technologies, and i expect there wont be one for years to come, which is why i stimply inch slowly along, of course if people could help here, would be much much appreciated. After all i do believe the company does know how it works well with the latest eclipse, with vc 5 and the PE edition. For me using the MICRO FOCUS 1 monhth trial wont do it, especially if it took me almost a month to figure out how to access a simple file with 2 records, something never an issue in GNUCOBOL, Z or openIDE.

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Micro Focus Expert
Micro Focus Expert

If you are looking to connect to IBM Z or use JCL, CICS or some other mainframe subsystem then you are most likely looking at the wrong product. Our product that provides mainframe compatibility is Enterprise Developer, which is a superset of Visual COBOL, allowing you to run batch programs using JCL or CICS programs running under the Enterprise Server product. You can request a trial version of this product but there is no Personal Edition version available.

For reading the data files with CRLF, assuming these are line sequential files, the default depends on the OS under which you are running, where under Linux/Unix X"0A" is used and under Windows X"0D0A" is used, This is configurable by setting options in a file hander configuration file (extfh.cfg). You can also set how the file handler should treat a X"1A" EOF character if one exists.

LSRECDELIM
LSFILETERM

You can connect to DB2 using Visual COBOL using either the DB2 directive to use the IBM preprocessor or the OpenESQL preprocessor which is from Micro Focus. OpenESQL uses either ODBC, JDBC or ADO.NET depending on the type of object code  to which you are compiling.

There are examples of using these preprocessors in the Samples Browser which is accessible from the Visual COBOL group on the Windows Start menu.

 

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Micro Focus Expert
Micro Focus Expert

"For me using the MICRO FOCUS 1 month trial wont do it, especially if it took me almost a month to figure out how to access a simple file with 2 records..."

This is the reason I've suggested that you request a full product trial, with support (after your request is qualified) during the trial period. Once again, you'd be able to raise Support Incidents for issues you encountered. With help from Customer Support, I'm sure we could have helped you resolve issues like the one mentioned above much more quickly. 

 

 

Blair McDonald

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Captain
Captain

Thanks Blair.

 

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Captain
Captain

Just so you know, all i do all day, is not watch movies, watch news or eat popcorn. all i do is cobol. Now since finding major problems with either not getting it to work, or not getting features to work, since noone bothers to answer simple questions. First what i did, was reformat my pc  twice since, i have then reinstalled microfocus and tried it with eclipse and vs. I must say with all due, eclipse was a a big big waste of time, though i realize it has uses, but the micro it was a big bug full of apples. now with vs wow smooth. Not only did i reinstall all the software, i even bought an ssd disk drive to make things faster. ok so im now well ahead with VC, i can compile i can use files, great. PC works   fast, i realize eclipse is one more headache to solve, of course with no help from this site so far, so i skipped eclipse, since really i just for now need to be proficient with all the tools of cobol, with the right editor, which for now is VC for VS. Now i will say this during my frustrating journey with VC, and by now im like light years ahead, from when i first started, when i couldnt even compile a simple program with VC. I have tried ibm z, and still clueless how to get an account from those guys. I will say this, from MF it was  a breeze, though i couldnt get it to work for a while, but with IBM, i cant even get to base 0. So what is my question, does anyone here know, how to get this z account, or is this the wrong forum for that. I will continue to test MF VC, and when i get to the next bottle neck so far none, i will come back, hoping someone can help. Like i said, im doing VC cobol   24/7 with some rest in between. thanks.

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Micro Focus Expert
Micro Focus Expert

No this would not be an appropriate forum to ask how to get an ID for an IBM mainframe environment.  

Obviously you're relatively new to development with modern IDE's like Eclipse and Visual Studio.  They are very different from each other and each has capabilities and limitations in terms of what Micro Focus can do within each framework.  In both cases we are a plug-in and must play within the rules of each framework.

I'm glad to hear that Visual Studio works well for you.  Did you have the opportunity to download the Learn COBOL material that was available when you downloaded the Personal Edition product.  Going through that from end to end might be useful for you and get you to a point you can be more productive.

One of the challenges in trying to help you is you open numerous threads often cross posting and often it appears not understanding what you've been told.  For instance you misquoted what I told you with regards to COBDATA and Personal COBOL.  I told you there were certain limitations within Personal COBOL and it was possible that COBDATA might not work.  It does in fact work fine with Personal COBOL as I downloaded and installed Personal COBOL on a VM and proved it out.  Some apparently the issue with is how you tried to set it up, not a bug or that it did no work.

You say assigning the dataset names externally won't work for you since you don't adhere to naming conventions in your programs but it fact it should still work fine.

Select outfile assign to dd1   (in program 1 )

select infile assign to indd (in program 2)

can both point to the same file

DD1=d:\data\temp.dat

INDD=d:\data\temp.dat

will work as long as you compile the program with the assign(external) compiler directive.

Perhaps spending some time reading the documentation  around the compiler directive ASSIGN and the section on External File Name Assignment will help you better understand how all  of this works.

 

Lastly uploading a small sample solution or project that can illustrate the issue will make it much easier for us to help you.

 

Good luck as you move forward with learning COBOL

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Micro Focus Expert
Micro Focus Expert

@CobolWiz,

 

I am concerned that you may not be seeing the responses that I (and others) have sent to you from the Community site. In a post late yesterday, you said:

 

" …i realize eclipse is one more headache to solve, of course with no help from this site so far…"

 

Here are the responses that I have sent you this week about concerns and questions that you've raised:

 

Welcome to the site, asking you to detail your contacts with support (and I got no response to this)

https://community.microfocus.com/t5/Visual-COBOL-Forum/Eclipse-and-Visual-Cobol-install-problems/m-p/2848742/highlight/true#M9318

 

Acknowledged your feedback about some of the videos being for older versions

https://community.microfocus.com/t5/Visual-COBOL-Forum/Videos-on-Visual-Cobol-lacking/m-p/2848807/highlight/true#M9320

 

Help with Locating Data Files when Running/Debugging in Eclipse

https://community.microfocus.com/t5/Visual-COBOL-Forum/COBDATA-question/m-p/2848808/highlight/true#M9321

 

Help with Specifying Environment Variables

https://community.microfocus.com/t5/Visual-COBOL-Forum/COBDATA-question/m-p/2848810/highlight/true#M9322

 

Suggestion to obtain an Evaluation, to get additional help

https://community.microfocus.com/t5/Visual-COBOL-Forum/Videos-on-Visual-Cobol-lacking/m-p/2849012/highlight/true#M9327

 

Please let me know if you have any issues reaching the links provided above.

Blair McDonald

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