Making JCL code changes

In addition to COBOL, PL/I, REXX, and High Level Assembler (HLASM), IBM Z® Open Editor supports z/OS MVS JCL editing. You can use the following features to edit JCL programs effectively.

With the syntax highlighting capability, you can quickly distinguish the comments, job, step (exec) and DD statements in a JCL program.

The editor provides the following features and capabilities:

Browsing code by using the Outline view

As you view the source, you can use the Outline view to efficiently explore and navigate the code of the program. By looking through the items in this view, you can see the Jobs, Steps, DD statements and directly navigate to one by selecting it.

JCL Outline

How to use it

You can use the Outline view only after you have opened a file or program. If the Outline view is not already expanded, you can open it by clicking View > Open view > Outline.

You can use this view to:

  • Recognize internal routines quickly via the icons in the outline view.
  • Go to a wanted location in the code by clicking the section header in the view.
  • Sort by Position or Name.
  • Search for identifiers within the outline by pressing Ctrl+Shift+O (Windows), or Cmd+Shift+O (Mac) within the Editor window.
  • Select the entire step/job/DD statement by double clicking on the symbol in the outline view.

When you move your cursor over the program, outline nodes are automatically selected. To toggle this and other features related to the Outline View, hover over the upper right corner of the Outline View. You can see the option ..., where you can click to find multiple options to organize your outline view such as Follow on Cursor, Filter by Type and Sort by Name, Position, and Type.

Code completion

The code completion feature suggests simple symbols, constant symbols, jobs, steps, DD statements, keyword instructions, and built-in functions. The editor applies a suggestion to the file based on the context of the cursor position. For a cursor position inside a stem, the suggestion replaces the entire symbol. For a cursor position inside the tail of a compound symbol, the suggestion replaces a segment of the symbol. The casing of the suggestion replaces the casing of the symbol in the file. The code completion suggestions are not filtered by case.

Code Completion

How to use it

The code completion suggestion is displayed automatically while you are typing outside of any comments or strings.

Syntax checking

The syntax checking feature underlines unrecognized statements and expressions in red, which helps you to make quick corrections and reduce compile errors.

How to use it

To see all the syntax errors in the open files, open the Problems view through the View menu or by clicking the error and warning icon in the status bar. Double-click the list item to directly go to the problem.

Undoing and redoing

Undo your changes by pressing Ctrl+Z (Windows) or Cmd+Z (Mac). Redo your changes by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Z (Windows) or Cmd+Shift+Z (Mac).

Commenting and uncommenting JCL code

You can comment out one or multiple selected lines of code or a selected section of code by using the toggle comment function.

How to use it

To toggle comment for one or multiple selected lines of code, press Cmd+/ (Mac) or Ctrl+/ (Windows), or go to Edit > Toggle Line Comment.

To toggle comments for a selected section of code, press Option+Shift+A (Mac) or Alt+Shift+A (Windows), or go to Edit > Toggle Block Comment.

See the following example where we first toggle line comment on a single line, then toggle line comment on multiple selected lines, and finally toggle block comment on a selection:

jcl toggle comment

Last Updated:
Contributors: Prasang Prajapati, Prasang-A-Prajapati