JCL Interivew Question - 1



1. What is primary allocation for a dataset?

The space allocated when the dataset is first created.

2. What is the difference between primary and secondary allocations for a

Secondary allocation is done when more space is required than what has
already been allocated.

3.How many extents are possible for a sequential file ? For a VSAM file ?

16 extents on a volume for a sequential file and 123 for a VSAM file.

4. What does a disposition of (NEW,CATLG,DELETE) mean?

That this is a new dataset and needs to be allocated, to CATLG the dataset if
the step is successful and to delete the dataset if the step abends.

5. What does a disposition of (NEW,CATLG,KEEP) mean?

That this is a new dataset and needs to be allocated, to CATLG the dataset if
the step is successful and to KEEP but not CATLG the dataset if the step abends.
Thus if the step abends, the dataset would not be catalogued and we would need
to supply the vol. ser the next time we refer to it.

6. How do you access a file that had a disposition of KEEP?

Need to supply volume serial no. VOL=SER=xxxx.

7. What does a disposition of (MOD,DELETE,DELETE) mean ?

The MOD will cause the dataset to be created (if it does not exist), and then
the two DELETEs will cause the dataset to be deleted whether the step abends or
not. This disposition is used to clear out a dataset at the beginning of a job.

8. What is the DD statement for a output file?

Unless allocated earlier, will have the foll parameters:

9. What do you do if you do not want to keep all the space allocated to a

Specify the parameter RLSE ( release ) in the SPACE e.g.


This is a new file and create it, if the step terminates normally, pass it to
the subsequent steps and if step abends, delete it. This dataset will not exist
beyond the JCL.

11. How do you create a temporary dataset? Where will you use them?

Temporary datasets can be created either by not specifying any DSNAME or by
specifying the temporary file indicator as in DSN=&&TEMP.

We use them to carry the output of one step to another step in the same job.
The dataset will not be retained once the job completes.

12. How do you restart a proc from a particular step?

In job card, specify RESTART=procstep.stepname

where procstep = name of the jcl step that invoked the proc

and stepname = name of the proc step where you want execution to start

13. How do you skip a particular step in a proc/JOB?

Can use either condition codes or use the jcl control statement IF (only in

13a. A PROC has five steps. Step 3 has a condition code. How can you
override/nullify this condition code?

Provide the override on the EXEC stmt in the JCL as follows:

//STEP001 EXEC procname,COND.stepname=value

All parameters on an EXEC stmt in the proc such as COND, PARM have to be
overridden like this.

14. How do you override a specific DDNAME/SYSIN in PROC from a JCL?

//<stepname.dd> DSN=...

15. What is NOTCAT 2 ?

This is an MVS message indicating that a duplicate catalog entry exists.
E.g., if you already have a dataset with dsn = �xxxx.yyyy� and u try to create
one with disp new,catlg, you would get this error. the program open and write
would go through and at the end of the step the system would try to put it in
the system catalog. at this point since an entry already exists the catlg would
fail and give this message. you can fix the problem by deleting/uncataloging the
first data set and going to the volume where the new dataset exists(this info is
in the msglog of the job) and cataloging it.

16. What is 'S0C7' abend?

Caused by invalid data in a numeric field.

17. What is a S0C4 error ?

Storage violation error - can be due to various reasons. e.g.: READING a file
that is not open, invalid address referenced due to subscript error.

18. What are SD37, SB37, SE37 abends?

All indicate dataset out of space. SD37 - no secondary allocation was
specified. SB37 - end of vol. and no further volumes specified. SE37 - Max. of
16 extents already allocated.

19. What is S322 abend ?

Indicates a time out abend. Your program has taken more CPU time than the
default limit for the job class. Could indicate an infinite loop.

20. Why do you want to specify the REGION parameter in a JCL step?

To override the REGION defined at the JOB card level.

REGION specifies the max region size. REGION=0K or 0M or omitting REGION
means no limit will be applied.

21. What does the TIME parameter signify ? What does TIME=1440 mean ?

TIME parameter can be used to overcome S322 abends for programs that
genuinely need more CPU time. TIME=1440 means no CPU time limit is to be applied
to this step.

22. What is COND=EVEN ?

Means execute this step even if any of the previous steps, terminated

23. What is COND=ONLY ?

Means execute this step only if any of the previous steps, terminated

24. How do you check the syntax of a JCL without running it?

TYPERUN=SCAN on the JOB card or use JSCAN.

25. What does IEBGENER do?

Used to copy one QSAM file to another. Source dataset should be described
using SYSUT1 ddname. Destination dataset should be decribed using SYSUT2.
IEBGENR can also do some reformatting of data by supplying control cards via

26. How do you send the output of a COBOL program to a member of a PDS?

Code the DSN as pds(member) with a DISP of SHR. The disp applies to the pds
and not to a specific member.

27. I have multiple jobs ( JCLs with several JOB cards ) in a member. What
happens if I submit it?

Multiple jobs are submitted (as many jobs as the number of JOB cards).

28. I have a COBOL program that ACCEPTs some input data. How do you code the
JCL statment for this? ( How do you code instream data in a JCL? )


input data

input data


29. Can you code instream data in a PROC ?


30. How do you overcome this limitation ?

One way is to code SYSIN DD DUMMY in the PROC, and then override this from
the JCL with instream data.

31. How do you run a COBOL batch program from a JCL? How do you run a
COBOL/DB2 program?

To run a non DB2 program,


To run a DB2 program,





PLAN(.....) LIB(....) PARMS(...)


32. What is STEPLIB, JOBLIB? What is it used for?

Specifies that the private library (or libraries) specified should be
searched before the default system libraries in order to locate a program to be

STEPLIB applies only to the particular step, JOBLIB to all steps in the

33. What is order of searching of the libraries in a JCL?

First any private libraries as specified in the STEPLIB or JOBLIB, then the
system libraries such as SYS1.LINKLIB. The system libraries are specified in the

34. What happens if both JOBLIB & STEPLIB is specified ?

JOBLIB is ignored.

35. When you specify mutiple datasets in a JOBLIB or STEPLIB, what factor
determines the order?

The library with the largest block size should be the first one.

36. How to change default proclib ?


37. The disp in the JCL is MOD and the program opens the file in OUTPUT mode.
What happens ?

The disp in the JCL is SHR and the pgm opens the file in EXTEND mode. What
happens ?

Records will be written to end of file (append) when a WRITE is done in both

38. What are the valid DSORG values ?

PS - QSAM, PO - Partitioned, IS - ISAM


39. What are the differences between JES2 & JES3 ?

JES3 allocates datasets for all the steps before the job is scheduled. In
JES2, allocation of datasets required by a step are done only just before the
step executes.

????? Can anyone add more


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