z/OS (MVS) / VSE Sort Parm Migration


Fast Parm Conversion & Output



You need to re-host, and eventually expand upon, your legacy sort jobs when migrating to another platform. MVS (z/OS) and VSE JCL sort steps will not work in a Unix shell or Windows command line environment.


Parm conversion is necessary, and there are multiple price-performance considerations. You thus need:

  • functional equivalence
  • lower operational costs
  • equal or better sorting performance
  • a more modern application syntax
  • support for more data transformation and reporting functionality


IRI CoSort users have been successfully converting JCL sort operations to Unix, Linux, and Windows systems for more than 30 years.

Free metadata conversion utilities (mvs2scl and vse2scl) in the CoSort package translate z/OS (MVS) and VSE JCL parms written for IBM DF-SORT (ICEMAN) CA-SORT, or SYNCSORT, into CoSort Sort Control Language (SortCL) program job scripts.

SortCL can accomplish all the functions of mainframe sort software -- and many of the reporting and replication tasks of utilities like File-AID, ICETOOL,and IEBGENER -- on "open systems" ... usually faster, and certainly cheaper.

Beyond rehosoting efforts, there are many application modernization benefits and more data management possibilities. Users of the larger IRI Voracity platform, powered by CoSort, can leverage a complete range of capabilities in data discovery, integration, migration, governance, and analytics.

The IRI CoSort package -- and its Sort Control Language (SortCL) program in particular -- is the oldest, and still industry-preferred destination for sort parms written for z/OS (MVS) and VSE JCL sort software, first propagated by IBM in DF-SORT.

CoSort includes free sort card conversion utilities called MVS2SCL and VSE2SCL. These utilities translate the relevant sort (select, sum, etc.) steps from a JCL stream into a functionally-equivalent SortCL job specification file that will run on Unix, Linux, and Windows. Metadata is converted and accommodations are made for multiple output and data types.

These advanced sort parm conversion tools also set up job scripts that can leverage the full range of CoSort data transformation, conversion, reporting, and protection functionality for all structured data sources off the mainframe.

The conversion wizard shown below demonstrates the conversion of one or more mainframe sort decks to SortCL job scripts. You can browse to identify the location of the parms, and then automatically convert them for use in SortCL.

The middle window shows advanced options available for these conversions. The bottom window shows from left to right: project explorer files (including the source and target job scripts), an editor displaying the source job script, a display of the target job script, and a tree view of the components of the target job script.