Job Control Language consists of several job control statements. These statements are created by a programmer or by a JCL coder using documentation provided by a programmer. The specific kinds of information that JCL statements usually provide are:
- Which programs to execute
- The sequence of program execution
- The datasets required by programs
There are many other types of information that JCL may provide to specify how the job should be processed, but the minimum requirement is to identify the job, the program to execute in each job step, and the datasets to be used. There are five basic types of JCL statements:
- JOB Statement
- EXEC Statement
- DD Statement
- NULL Statement
- COMMENT Statement
Before the specific JCL statements are described, let\u2019s review the concept of a job and its job
steps called a job input stream. A job step identifies a single program to be executed and a job is
a collection of related job step
A series of jobs ready to be submitted to the operating system is referred to as the job input stream,
job stream, or input stream. The discussion of job input stream is related to the three JCL
statements, and the definitions of job and job steps. Each job step contains dataset descriptions
needed for the program to be executed. Each job is made up of the following elements:
- A JOB Statement
- Job Step(s) marked by EXEC statements
- Dataset descriptions that are described by DD statements and needed for each job
Here is the general format of a JCL statement:
//NAME OPERATION OPERANDS COMMENTS
- Name Field
- Operation Field
- Operand Field
- Comments Field
All JCL statements begin with a // in columns 1 and 2. The // identifies a statement as a JCL statement as opposed to a data statement. The name field begins immediately after the second slash; while the other fields are separated from each other by one or more blanks. The fields, except for comments, must be coded in columns 3-71. The comment field can extend through column 80.
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