Known issues and limitations

The IBM Z® Open Editor extension has some known issues and limitations. This page provides the status of the current release. Also review the list of open issues and enhancement requests in our Github repositoryopen in new window. It might list issues that are not yet documented here.

Java™ 11 64-Bit JRE or SDK required

If the right version of Java cannot be found in the current user's path or if no JAVA_HOME environment variable was defined, you might see error messages in the Output view of VS Code. Such errors could also be caused by other reasons such as not enough free memory for Java on your system.

Go through all the steps described in the Getting Started page for configuring Java to try out different options.

Resetting Language Servers or VS Code

It might happen that the language servers provided by IBM Z Open Editor become inconsistent and do not behave as expected. For example, a language server might stop reporting syntax errors, or it cannot resolve copybooks anymore. Instead of quitting and restarting VS Code completely, you can try pressing the F1 key and type the following commands to reset one or more language servers.

  • IBM Z Open Editor: Pause the COBOL Language Server: Stops the COBOL language server and restarts it when you open a COBOL file again.
  • IBM Z Open Editor: Pause the PL/I Language Server: Stops the PL/I language server and restarts it when you open a PL/I file again.
  • IBM Z Open Editor: Pause the Assembler Language Server: Stops the HLASM language server and restarts it when you open an HLASM file again.
  • IBM Z Open Editor: Pause the REXX Language Server: Stops the REXX language server and restarts it when you open a REXX file again.
  • IBM Z Open Editor: Reload Zowe Profiles: If you have changed the password of your Zowe CLI profile that is used to load your remote include files such as copybooks, you need to run this command to refresh the Zowe profile.
  • Developer: Reload Window: Restarts the current VS Code window and all of its extensions. If you have many editor windows open at the same time, you can use this command to reset just the current window in which you run the command.

Limitations for Visual Studio Code Multi-Root Workspaces

IBM Z® Open Editor supports VS Code multi-root workspacesopen in new window, but there are some limits or special rules on how ZAPP files and settings are used in a multi-root workspace:

  • Property Groups: the multi-root workspace can load multiple zapp files located in the top-dir of each workspace. We search for property groups in each of these zapp files in the order the workspaces are listed in the .code-workspace .code-workspace file when resolving include files.
  • For user build the DBB ZAPP profile located in the workspace of the program being built is being used. The application-conf files (additional files listed in zapp profile) also need to be in the root of the workspace with the program.
  • For Z Open Editor's user buildopen in new window, local copybooks and include files that need to be uploaded to USS for build can be located in any other workspace of the multi-root workspace. The location of the copybooks and include files must be specified in the ZAPP file of the workspace in which these include files are located in. A ZAPP file cannot provide property groups that point to locations outside of its workspace. The exception would be using absolute path names, but those might break the ability to share the ZAPP file with other team members as they might have their files in different locations.

Limitations of using Z Open Editor with Eclipse Che and Red Hat CodeReady Workspaces

Almost all capabilities described in this documentation are available when you use IBM Z Open Editor with Eclipse Che or Red Hat CodeReady Workspaces. However, note the following limitations.

  • Code snippets: Eclipse Theia, Eclipse Che or Red Hat CodeReady Workspaces do not provide a code snippet gallery as VS Code has. Therefore, you cannot easily define your own custom code snippets with the Theia editor. However, the extensive IBM Z Open Editor code snippet library is available via the code completion function using the Ctrl+Space shortcut. Typically, you find the code snippets by scrolling down or typing any substring such as CICS to filter down the list to the available CICS code snippets.

  • Zowe CLI secure credentials are currently not supported with Z Open Editor on Eclipse Che and Ret Hat CodeReady Workspaces. The Zowe Explorer setting "zowe.security.secureCredentialsEnabled": false must be used in these environments. See the section Setting up integrations to interact with z/OS > Managing credentials unsecured

  • Path names specified for property groups in ZAPP files are always case-sensitive, even if the setting "zopeneditor.enforceCaseSensitiveIncludeFileNames" is set to false. However, this setting works for the file names that get matched in the folders that match the property groups.

  • See a full list of Red Hat CodeReady Workspaces 2.3 issues in Release Notes and Known Issuesopen in new window.

Language-specific features and limitations

JCL

There is currently no language server for JCL. When you open JCL files, syntax highlighting is enabled, but no additional language server capabilities are available for these files. The observable limitations include:

  • No contents are shown in the Outline view.
  • Ctrl+Space shows code templates, but no syntactical completions.
  • Many menu options are unavailable.

COBOL

The following lists show the implementation status of the COBOL language server. Use these lists to check that the feature that you are looking for was implemented or is regarded as a known issue. Let us know if you have any additional issues.

Enabled features of COBOL program files

  • Syntax highlighting
  • Syntax errors
  • Document highlighting
  • Hover
  • Go to declaration
  • Find all references in file and across the multiple files
  • Peek references in file and across the multiple files
  • Rename symbol in file and across the multiple files
  • Outline view
  • Code completion
  • Snippets
  • Copybook resolving and copybook hover support
  • Document link support to open copybook by using Ctrl+Click (Windows) or Cmd+Click (Mac)
  • Embedded languages support such as SQL, CICS®, and DLI
  • Renumber and Unnumber sequence numbers
  • COBOL 6.3 support
    • New DATETIME functions
    • UUID4 function
    • JSON GENERATE/PARSE options
  • COBOL 6.4 supportopen in new window
  • Syntax highlighting support for Sequence Numbers (1-6 and 73-80 columns)

Limitations of COBOL program files

  • False unreachable code warnings: In some cases, the editor incorrectly reports that code is unreachable in embedded SQL and CICS statements such as EXEC CICS HANDLE. One such case is reported in this issueopen in new window. You can use a user setting to disable warnings for unreachable code completely as described in Enabling and disabling unreachable COBOL code warnings.
  • Incomplete support for conditional compilation: Our community has reported various issuesopen in new window when programs contain conditional compilation statements. These types of programs are currently not fully supported.
  • Keyword based COBOL code folding: Currently VS Code default code folding is based on indentation levels, not keywords.
  • COBOL copybooks are requested by the language server one at the time, which does not lead to optimal performance. For COBOL programs that load a large number of copybooks from MVS consider as a workaround the user setting "zowe.files.temporaryDownloadsFolder.cleanup": false that will not re-download the files between editing sessions.

Enabled features of COBOL copybook files

  • Syntax errors
  • Find all references in file
  • Peek references in file
  • Rename symbol in file
  • Outline view
  • Syntax highlighting
  • Code completion
  • Snippets
  • Embedded languages support such as SQL, CICS, and DLI

Limitations of COBOL copybook files

  • No support for Hover
  • No support for Go to declaration
  • No support for Find all references across the multiple files
  • No support for Peek references across the multiple files
  • No support for Rename symbol from a copybook to the files that include it

PL/I

The following lists show the implementation status of the PL/I language server. Use these lists to check that the feature that you are looking for was implemented or is regarded as a known issue. Let us know if you have any additional issues.

Enabled features of PL/I program files

  • Syntax highlighting
  • Syntax errors
  • Document highlighting
  • Hover
  • Go to declaration
  • Find all references in file and across the multiple files
  • Peek references in file and across the multiple files
  • Rename symbol in file and across the multiple files
  • Outline view
  • Code completion
  • Include file resolving and include file hover support
  • Document link support to open include file by using Ctrl+Click (Windows) or Cmd+Click (Mac)
  • Embedded languages support such as SQL, CICS, and DLI
  • *process (or %process) compile options statements, such as:
  • PL/I 5.3 new functions support
    • NULLINIT
    • REINIT
    • REGEX
    • SUBTO
    • XMLIGNORE
  • PL/I 6.1 supportopen in new window
  • Keyword based PL/I code folding is supported for the following keywords:
    • DO
    • IF/ELSE
    • IF
    • ELSE
    • SELECT
    • PROCEDURE
    • PACKAGE
    • BEGIN
    • WHEN
    • ON

Limitations of PL/I program files

  • No support for macros
  • The left margin is currently not fully configurable. The minimum value required is 2.
  • PL/I 6.1
    • No support is included for the MAXRUNONIF compiler option.
    • No support is included for the PROCINC directive. An alternative way to accomplish the purpose of the PROCINC directive is to use the PROCESS directive with the compiler option from the data set that you want to add for the PROCINC directive.
  • PL/I include files are requested by the language server one at the time, which does not lead to optimal performance. For PL/I programs that load a large number of include files from MVS consider as a workaround the user setting "zowe.files.temporaryDownloadsFolder.cleanup": false that will not re-download the files between editing sessions.

Enabled features of PL/I include files

  • Syntax errors (lexing and parsing)
  • Find all references in file
  • Peek references in file
  • Rename symbol in file
  • Outline view
  • Syntax highlighting
  • Code completion
  • Embedded languages support such as SQL, CICS, and DLI

Limitations of PL/I include files

  • No support for showing syntax errors for resolving variables
  • No support for Hover
  • No support for Go to declaration
  • No support for Find all references across the multiple files
  • No support for Peek references across the multiple files
  • No support for Rename symbol across the multiple files

HLASM

The following lists show the implementation status of the HLASM language server. Use these lists to check that the feature that you are looking for was implemented or is regarded as a known issue. Let us know if you have any additional issues.

Enabled features of HLASM program files

  • Syntax highlighting
  • Syntax errors, which currently only include the following:
    • Copy statements not resolved
    • Spaces in continuation line
  • Document highlighting
  • Hover on operations and operands
  • Go to declaration
  • Find all references in file
  • Peek references in file
  • Outline view for macros, CSECTs, and DSECTs
  • Code completion
  • Copybook file resolving and copybook file hover support
  • SYS1.MACLIB Macro remote file resolving and content hover support
  • Document link support to open copybook file by using Ctrl+Click (Windows) or Cmd+Click (Mac)
  • Quick fix hints for lines that are too long and spaces in the continuation line

Limitations of HLASM program files

  • Code completion does not support symbols defined in copybooks outside of SYS1.MACLIB
  • Limited syntax checks such as no errors for undeclared variables
  • Syntax highlighting limitations on multi-line strings
  • Syntax highlighting limitations on non-continuation lines that begin at column 16
  • Syntax highlighting does not recognize continuation lines that begin at column 17 and later as comments
  • When a CSECT has the same name as the TITLE, the CSECT is not displayed correctly in the Outline view
  • Keyword based HLASM code folding: Currently VS Code default code folding is based on indentation levels, not keywords.

REXX

The following lists show the implementation status of the REXX language server. Use these lists to check that the feature that you are looking for was implemented or is regarded as a known issue. Let us know if you have any additional issues.

Enabled features of REXX program files

  • Syntax highlighting
  • Syntax errors
  • Hover
  • Find all references
  • Outline view
  • Code completion
  • Include control directive resolution

Limitations of REXX program files

  • No support for the 'END' keyword as a variable
  • No support for embedded languages
  • Code Completion and Hover do not support keywords that are not keyword instructions
  • Some color themes may not highlight all symbols correctly
  • Keywords that follow a mixed-case keyword might not be colored correctly. For example, a keyword that follows the keyword 'ADDRess' will be colored as a variable
  • Files that contain the replacement character (�) are not parsed correctly
  • The simple symbol, constant symbol, compound symbol, stem, and internal routine suggestions are restricted to the current file in the editor
  • Code Completion inserts an extra pair of parenthesis when an existing function call in the editor is replaced with a built-in function
  • Hovering over a resolved include control directive does not show a preview of its contents
  • Changing the contents of a resolved include control directive will not necessarily clear errors
  • The language features do not consider the contents of a resolved include control directive
  • Keyword based REXX code folding: Currently VS Code default code folding is based on indentation levels, not keywords.

IBM RSE API Plug-in for Zowe CLI

Known issues and limitations for IBM RSE API Plug-in for Zowe CLI (RSE CLI plug-in)

HTTP protocol support for RSE profiles

As of Zowe CLI 6.31.0, HTTP support is not available for RSE profile connections. There is a Zowe CLI issueopen in new window that can be tracked for solution to bring this support back.

npm WARN for peer dependencies

When installing RSE CLI plug-in, you may encounter an npm WARN for an unmet peer dependency of Zowe CLI even though you have an accommodating version installed. There is due to a known bug in npm versions prior to 7. Having the warnings will not interfere with the successful installation of the plug-in; however, these warnings can be eliminated by running the command npm install npm@latest -g to obtain the latest version of npm.

RSE CLI plug-in with ZAPP

  • When using the --mappings-file tag to state the location of a mappings file to use for upload and download of MVS files, if you state a zapp.json with a zapp.yaml in the same directory, the zapp.yaml will take precedence over the JSON file. It is recommended that you have only one zapp.yaml or zapp.json file when using ZAPP files at a project level.

RSE CLI plug-in with Zowe Secure Credential Store plugin

  • For Mac users with Zowe SCS plug-in, the user will be prompted 2 times for credentials due to 2 secure fields (user and password) within the RSE profile.

RSE CLI plug-in with JSON Web Tokens

  • JSON Web Tokens are not supported by Zowe Explorer 1.9.0 or previous versions.
  • If you created an RSE profile by using Zowe Explorer 1.11.1 or lower and left the username and password values blank and have empty strings stored within the profile's YAML, you will be required to add the --user and --password tags with the appropriate values when you use command line operations with that profile, even if a JWT has been issued for the profile at this time. We recommend creating the profile using command line operations or editing the profile with Zowe Explorer 1.12.0 or higher to omit the empty strings in the profile's YAML file.
  • The JWT logout command zowe rse auth logout is not supported by the host component RSE API 1.0.0.
  • If VS Code is opened during the auth login and auth logout is submitted using the CLI command, a refresh of VS Code is required to grab the changes to the profile's YAML file for profile updates to be used in Zowe Explorer.
  • Login and Logout via Zowe Explorer for project level configuration files is not working. For these profiles users can login and logout via the CLI command.

RSE CLI plug-in TSO and UNIX commands

  • The command zowe rse issue command {COMMAND}, which can be used to issue a TSO command, is not supported by the host component RSE API 1.0.0.
  • Issuing a UNIX command with an RSE profile via Zowe Explorer is not supported yet.

RSE CLI plug-in support in the Zowe Explorer VS Code extension

  • Uploading USS files in Zowe Explorer does not recognize the profile's default encoding at this time.

  • If a default profile is not set for RSE CLI plug-in, Z Open Editor will not activate with Zowe Explorer. You can see if a default profile is set by issuing the command:

    zowe profiles list rse

    If a default profile is set, then (default) should show up next to the default profile's name. If no default profile is set, you can issue the following command, replacing <profileName> with the name of the profile you would like to be the default:

    zowe profiles set-default rse <profileName>

MVS

The following features are not implemented yet:

  • Create a Binary Data Set type

JES

The following features are not implemented yet:

  • Issue a Modify command
  • Issue a Stop command

Known issues with USS

  • USS does not accept the upload of a directory or file names with spaces in them.

  • An error occurs when you specify USS paths in a Window's Bash terminal (for example: /u/userid). To solve the issue, create an environment variable MSYS_NO_PATHCONV with a value of 1 in User Variables and restart the terminal.

Known issues for user build

Using an older version of IBM Dependency-Based Build

IBM Z Open Editor v3 is optimized for working wit IBM Dependency-Based Build (DBB) v2. However, it can also still work with DBB v1. To be able run builds with v2 you need to use the main branch of the https://github.com/IBM/dbb-zappbuildopen in new window zAppBuild git repository. To build with DBB v1 you must checkout the branch called zAppBuild_2_x. Here the 2 stands for zAppBuild version 2 as the latest version in the main branch of zAppBuild is v3, which is the one that works with DBB v2.

Using an older version of DBB zAppBuild

If you are not using the latest branches of zAppBuild or have your own fork that was based on an older version than DBB zAppBuild 2.3.0 then consider the following. The encoding of the dependency file generated during an IBM User Build was recently changed from IBM-1047 to a standard UTF-8 encoding. This change means that if the latest version of IBM Z Open Editor is not paired with DBB zAppBuild 2.3.0 or greater you will have to add the previously required IBM-1047 encoding to the dependency file being generated, by adding the following to your .gitattributes file in your project in order to run an IBM User Build successfully:

*.userbuilddependencies zos-working-tree-encoding=ibm-1047 git-encoding=utf-8

Other known issues

  • Currently you cannot upload and build programs that start with a $ in their name.
  • The ZAPP code snippet for user build profiles misses a mandatory property. Manually add the application property after inserting the snippet.
  • Some programs fail building on z/OS with the error Missing required dependency file field 'isCICS'. when using the --dependencyFile ${dependencyFile}" build script arguments in the ZAPP profile. As a workaround remove this parameter for now until we can provide a fix. This parameters is an optional performance improvement. Builds can work without it as well.
  • When local program files are managed as lowercase files a logFilePatterns with the expression "${buildFile.basename}.log" will not work as dbb-zappbuild will generate the log file with an uppercase name.

Reporting issues

If you want to provide feedback or report an issue, open an issue in the GitHub repositoryopen in new window. Any report and feedback is appreciated.

Last Updated:
Contributors: Billie Simmons, Shi Kun Li, Greg Lambert, Peter Haumer, Lauren Li, Min Huang, Billie Simmons, Bradley Knaysi, Lauren Li, Peter Haumer, BillieJean-Simmons, Rudy Leonel Pichola Flores, Saile, Billie Jean Simmons, Prasang-A-Prajapati, kmaselli, Arvin Bhatnagar, Lauren K Li, PrasangAPrajapati, shikunli, Keng-Hui Beall