50+ REAL-TIME Cobol Interview Questions and Answers
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50+ REAL-TIME Clobal Interview Questions and Answers

Last updated on 09th May 2024, Blog, Interview Questions

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Sangetha (Mainframe Developer )

It's great to hear that Sangetha loves her work as a Mainframe Developer with four years of experience in the field. As a Mainframe Developer, she plays a crucial role in programming and maintaining applications running on large-scale computing systems, often utilizing COBOL. With her expertise, Sangetha contributes to the smooth operation of critical business processes and applications in mainframe environments.

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A COBOL course offers comprehensive instruction on Common Business-Oriented Language, a programming language widely used in business, finance, and administrative systems. This course typically covers a range of topics aimed at providing students with a thorough understanding of COBOL syntax, data structures, and programming principles.

1. Distinguishes COMP1, COMP2, and COMP3 from one another?

Ans:

In COBOL programming, the data types COMP1, COMP2, and COMP3 . Single precision floating point numbers are represented by COMP1, double precision floating point numbers by COMP2, and packed decimal values by COMP3. While COMP3 stores data in a packed decimal format, which saves space but requires conversion during processing, COMP1 and COMP2 save data in binary format.

2. What kinds of data exist in COBOL?

Ans:

  • Characteristic (PIC X.
  • Decimal (PIC 9(n. V 9(m.. and Numerical (PIC 9.
  • PIC S9(n. COMP Binary
  • Point of Flotation (PIC S9(n. COMP3.
  • (PIC 9(6. or PIC X(6.. Date
  • The encoding of several sorts of data, including characters, numbers, decimals, etc dates within COBOL software.

3. Describe an index from a subscript?

Ans:

Subscript: A subscript in programming specifies an element’s location inside an array or collection. Usually, it is a number that is used to retrieve particular elements from the array. Subscripts are used to indicate the precise location of an element within an array; they typically begin at 0 or 1, depending on the programming language.

Index: The location of an element inside a data structure, like an array or list, is also referred to as an index.it may also refer to a pointer or reference to a memory region under some situations. 

4. Execute a paragraph as opposed to a section?

Ans:

  • A COBOL SECTION is a section of a program that consists of several paragraphs that are related to each other. 
  • The program is logically divided into sections to make it easier to comprehend and update. 
  • Usually, each section has one or more paragraphs that carry out particular functions pertaining to the goal of the section.
  • In COBOL, a paragraph is an executable code segment that is part of a section. 
  • Within the program, paragraphs are employed to carry out particular processes or activities. 
  • They include declarations outlining the steps the program will take.

5. Describe the words “NEXT SENTENCE” from “CONTINUE”?

Ans:

CONTINUE: The CONTINUE statement in COBOL is used to transfer command to the sentence that follows in the present paragraph. It just serves as a placeholder to signal that the program should go on to the next sentence and does nothing else.

NEXT PHRASE: Within the current paragraph, control is transferred to the following phrase using the NEXT phrase statement. While it is more explicit—referring directly to the next sentence rather than the following statements is comparable to CONTINUE.

6. what is the different between syntax and data handling?

Ans:

Aspect Syntax Data Handling
Definition Rules and structure governing the composition of code Operations and techniques for managing and manipulating data
Focus Concerned with the correct arrangement and usage of programming elements Concentrated on managing data storage, retrieval, and manipulation
Examples Keywords, symbols, and rules for constructing statements File handling, record structures, data manipulation operations
Importance Determines the correctness and readability of code Ensures accurate processing and manipulation of data within a program

7. What does dynamic and static linking entail?

Ans:

Compiling all required libraries or modules into the executable file at compile time is known as static linking. This indicates that the executable itself contains all of the code needed by the program. One benefit of static linking is that the external libraries are not required individually, making it simple to distribute and run the program on any platform.

On the other side, dynamic linking entails linking the application with modules or libraries during runtime. Using this approach, the required libraries are loaded into memory during program execution rather than being part of the executable file. Because the libraries are shared by several programs and updates to the libraries may be implemented without recompiling the program, this enables more effective use of memory.

8. Describe the EVALUATE statement used?

Ans:

  • In certain programming languages, like COBOL, conditional processing is carried out according to the contents of data objects using the EVALUATE statement. 
  • It permits the assessment of one  or more conditions, and the performance of related statements in accordance with the conclusions of those assessments. 
  • When working with several criteria, the EVALUATE statement is frequently utilised in place of nested IF statements.

9. How does “PERFORM… WITH TEST AFTER” differ from “PERFORM… WITH TEST BEFORE”?

Ans:

The COBOL PERFORM statement has two alternatives that are used to manage the timing of condition checking within a loop: PERFORM… WITH TEST AFTER and PERFORM… WITH TEST BEFORE.

PERFORM… WITH TEST AFTER designates that each time the loop iterates, the condition stated in the PERFORM statement is assessed. This indicates that before the condition is examined to see if the loop should continue, the body of the loop is always run at least once.

The phrase “WITH TEST BEFORE” denotes that each iteration begins with an evaluation of the condition before the loop body. The body of the loop won’t be run at all if the condition is first false.

10. What use does a copy statement’s REPLACING option serve?

Ans:

  • In COBOL, text within copied source code can be changed or replaced before it’s incorporated into the main program using the REPLACING option of a COPY statement. 
  • With the use of this feature, copied code can be customised without having to change the original copybook. 
  • It is helpful for customising generic code to fit particular needs or circumstances since it may be used to swap out text strings or specific identifiers with other values.

11. What function does the LINKAGE SECTION serve?

Ans:

In COBOL, the LINKAGE SECTION acts as a link between the COBOL program and outside elements such as data files or subprograms. It outlines the interface that other program units and the main program use. It contains declarations for objects shared by the main program and any external data files or subprograms. It makes data transmission and communication between the various program components easier. It guarantees the appropriate synchronisation and amalgamation of diverse software elements.

12. What distinguishes object-oriented COBOL programming from structured COBOL programming?

Ans:

  • In order to improve readability and maintainability, structured COBOL programming places a strong emphasis on grouping code into logical structures like functions, paragraphs, and procedures. 
  • Conversely, object-oriented COBOL programming presents ideas such as Using object-oriented ideas, classes, objects, inheritance, and polymorphism can help in the construction of modular and reusable code.

13. What is the section about local storage?

Ans:

A COBOL program’s LOCAL STORAGE SECTION is where variables are defined to store data momentarily while the program is running. It mostly stores information that must remain in place during a program execution. Declared variables in this section are usually used just for short-term storage and are not kept between program executions. When it comes to managing data within a COBOL program, the LOCAL STORAGE SECTION is distinct from the WORKING STORAGE and LINKAGE SECTIONS.

14.Define INPUT PROCEDURE and OUTPUT PROCEDURE?

Ans:

  • A COBOL program’s FILE SECTION They’re employed to designate custom logic that is applied before either writing to or reading from a file. 
  • These optional processes offer a mechanism to carry out particular tasks like verifying input, initialising variables, or opening and deleting files.

15. What does the LINKAGE SECTION serve as?

Ans:

The LINKAGE SECTION is where data items that are transmitted between programs during a CALL statement are defined in COBOL programming. It facilitates data sharing between the called and calling programs by acting as a bridge. For proper communication, the data sent from the calling program and the data defined in the called program’s LINKAGE SECTION must match. This part makes it possible for many programs to communicate with one another seamlessly, which promotes modular programming and helps maintain data integrity.

16. What are the START statement’s access modes?

Ans:

  • In COBOL, the START statement has the following access modes:
  • SEQUENTIAL: Indicates that the indexed file’s records should be fetched one after the other.
  • RANDOM: Indicates that data will be obtained from the indexed file directly by record number.

17.Define an inline performer?

Ans:

In COBOL, an inline PERFORM is a PERFORM statement nested inside another statement, like an iterative or conditional statement. It eliminates the need to declare a separate paragraph for the PERFORM statement, resulting in more understandable and compact code.

18. In a COBOL program, which division and paragraphs are required?

Ans:

  • The Identification Division and the Procedure Division are the two required divisions of a COBOL program.
  • The program’s name, creator, and development date are among the details found in the Identification Division. 
  • The program’s actual logic and instructions are contained in the Procedure Division. 
  • The Environment Division, which offers details about the system environment in which the application will execute, is another section that is frequently included

19. Distinguish between external and global variables?

Ans:

External variables can be accessed from other programs via linkage sections or other interprogram communication mechanisms, but global variables can be accessed from any part of the program in which they are specified. Generally speaking, global variables cover a larger range than external variables.

20. What Does Pic 9v99 Mean?

Ans:

  • Picture 9v99 Typically, Pic 9v99 is used as a placeholder in COBOL code. 
  • It displays a nine-digit numeric field with no decimal places. 
  • The “v” designates a variable length field, which allows for dynamic resizing of the field while the application is running. 
  • In COBOL applications, this notation is frequently used to store numerical data since it offers flexible handling of different data sizes and efficient memory utilisation.

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    21. What rules need to be adhered to while creating a structured COBOL program?

    Ans:

    In order to develop a structured COBOL program, follow these recommendations:

    • Name variables, paragraphs, and sections according to a precise and uniform convention.
    • Clearly label each logical portion of the program with a heading and some commentary.
    • Arrange the program flow with the use of control structures such such as PERFORM loops and IF expressions.
    • To avoid making the code more difficult to read, do not use the ALTER statement for program control.
    • Use insightful comments to clarify each section’s goal and any intricate reasoning.

    22. In a system containing centuries, how to get the present date?

    Ans:

    You can use programming languages like Python, JavaScript, or Java to get the current date from the system with the century included.

    To get the current date with the century in Python,  the “datetime” module and its “datetime.now(.” function.

    JavaScript allows you to extract the current year, month, and day by first creating a new “Date} object and then using its methods.

    The “java.time.LocalDate” class in Java can be used to After obtaining the current date, separate the components of the year, month, and day.

    All in all, these techniques will provide you with the current date along with the century details.

    23. How many departments are there in a COBOL program?

    Ans:

    • Identification Division: This section includes the name and description of the program together with any other identifying details like the author, the date the program was written, and its purpose.
    • Environment Division: This section describes the input/output file system, device specifications, and unique processing needs of the program’s operating environment.
    • Data Division: This division establishes the record layouts, file descriptions, and data structures that the software uses.
    • category of Procedures: This category includes the program’s real procedural logic, which includes the steps that must be followed and any iterative or conditional processing.

    24. What are NOSSRANGE and SSRANGE?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, compiler directives SSRANGE and NOSSRANGE determine whether subscript out of range checking is allowed or not. Bounds checking is enabled via SSRANGE, which causes an error and program termination if an array subscript exceeds its allowed boundaries. When subscript bounds are exceeded, the program can still run since NOSSRANGE turns off this checking.

    25. What is the COMP1? COMP 2?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL, the data types COMP1 and COMP2 are used to represent floating-point numbers. 
    • COMP1 is a floating-point format with single precision that normally requires 4 bytes of storage, while COMP2 is a double-precision format that typically requires 8 bytes.of keeping. 
    • In COBOL programs, these formats are utilised for effective floating-point numeric representation and arithmetic operations.

    26. How does PIC 9.99 and PIC9v99 differ from one another?

    Ans:

    “PIC 9.99” in COBOL denotes a numeric data item that can have values like “12.34” or “0.05” since it has two digits before and two digits after the decimal point.

    In contrast, “PIC 9V99” denotes a numerical data item that is comparable but has an assumed decimal point between the first and second digits, enabling values such as “0.05” or “1.23”.

    Therefore, the primary distinction between “PIC 9.99” and “PIC 9V99” is how the decimal point is stated clearly in the former and impliedly in the latter.

    27. What Does the String’s Pointer Serve As?

    Ans:

    • The function of pointers in strings is to point to memory regions where string data is kept. 
    • By pointing to the string’s beginning or particular characters within it, they facilitate the efficient manipulation and traversal of strings. 
    • This makes operations like iteration, comparison, and string concatenation easier. 
    • Pointers also make it possible for strings to have dynamic memory allocation, which increases memory management flexibility. 
    • In general, pointers improve the flexibility and efficiency of managing strings in programming languages such as C and C++.

    28. What does binary search entail?

    Ans:

    An effective method for finding a target value in a sorted array or list is binary search. It operates by halving the search interval repeatedly until the target is located or There is nothing in the interval. The array must first be sorted in order to use this approach. For big datasets, binary search is substantially quicker than linear search, with a temporal complexity of O(log n.. It is extensively utilised in many different applications, including binary tree and database searches.

    29. What distinguishes a sequential search from a binary search?

    Ans:

    • The method used to locate a target value is where binary search and sequential search diverge most. 
    • Binary search has an O(log n. time complexity since it uses a divide and conquer approach and necessitates sorting the array or list. 
    • Sequential search, on the other hand, looks through each item in the array or list one at a time until the desired value is located, producing an O(n. temporal complexity.

    30. Describe EVALUATE statement work?

    Ans:

    Conditional branching, programmers in languages like COBOL or SQL utilise the EVALUATE command. It permits the evaluation of several conditions against a particular variable or expression, with associated actions being carried out in accordance with the condition that matches. By simplifying intricate nested IF THEN ELSE structures, this statement improves code readability and manageability. It’s frequently employed in decision-making procedures, including choosing alternative actions depending on changing parameters in a query or program.

    31. What are the various guidelines for doing a search?

    Ans:

    • Determining search parameters, establishing search limits, establishing search hierarchy, managing search outcomes, and refining search algorithms are among the various guidelines for conducting a search.for effectiveness. 
    • These guidelines aid in making sure that searches are carried out efficiently and yield pertinent results within predetermined parameters.

    32. When it comes to a PERFORM statement, which is the default—TEST BEFORE or TEST AFTER?

    Ans:

    The default value for a PERFORM statement in a lot of computer languages, like COBOL, is TEST BEFORE. This guarantees that the loop is run at least once because the condition is assessed before the loop is started. If desired, some languages might allow you to specifically specify TEST AFTER. It’s critical to comprehend PERFORM statements’ default behaviour while designing successful code.

    33. What are the various SORT operating rules?

    Ans:

    • Defining the data set to be sorted, defining the sorting criteria (e.g., ascending or descending order., and be sorted, choosing the appropriate sorting algorithm, dealing with duplicate values, and outlining any extra needs for output or processing. 
    • These guidelines ensure that information is arranged based on predetermined standards for effective retrieval and analysis.

    34. When is the use of a scope terminator required?

    Ans:

    When establishing the boundaries of a particular context, such as the end of a loop, subroutine, or conditional statement, or when terminating a block of code, a scope terminator is required. It guards against syntactic problems and guarantees that the compiler or interpreter understands the contained code’s intended scope. A scope terminator is necessary to prevent ambiguous code, which might cause unexpected behaviour or runtime issues.

    35. Why is opening a file in IO mode required in order to REWRITE it?

    Ans:

    • Because IO mode enables both reading from and writing to a file, it is required to open a file in order to perform REWRITE. 
    • The REWRITE operation involves adding new data to existing records in a file. 
    • To do this, reading the existing records is necessary to find the record that needs to be updated, and then writing the modified record back into the file. 
    • By opening the file in IO mode, you can make sure that the program has access and rights to read and write to the file, which will allow the REWRITE operation to be executed successfully.

    36. Determine which module can be called statically or dynamically.

    Ans:

    Statically called modules are those that are directly mentioned in the program’s code and linked at compile time. On the other hand, dynamic calling refers to the loading and invocation of modules during runtime in response to program logic or configuration. Furthermore, comments or documentation found inside the code may shed light on how a module is supposed to be called.

    37. What makes a LINKAGE SECTION necessary?

    Ans:

    • Specify the parameters sent between programs during program invocation, COBOL requires the LINKAGE SECTION. 
    • It performs the function of a communication interface, enabling data transfer between the called and calling programs. 
    • Data transfer and synchronisation between program modules are made easier when parameters declared in the called program’s LINKAGE SECTION match those declared in the calling program’s USING clause.

    38. What search verb means “perform” when it comes to varying?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, the PERFORM…VARYING construct is equal to the verb SEARCH. Both are employed in iterative processes, in which a control variable’s value is modified during each iteration of a loop that is run a variable number of times. The SEARCH verb enables you to go through a table or array and take particular actions depending on the parameters for the search. Similar to this, PERFORM…VARYING enables the repeated run of a code block with a changeable control variable.

    39. How many Sections in Data Division

    Ans:

    • The File Section, WorkingStorage Section, and Linkage Section are the three primary portions of COBOL’s Data Division. 
    • In a COBOL program, each section has a specific function for defining and arranging data. 
    • These sections assist in managing the program’s data, which includes files, variables, and parameters that are transferred across applications.

    40. What distinguishes the use of comp and comp3?

    Ans:

    The way data is kept is where comp and comp3 usage diverge most. When storing data in binary format, “COMP” (sometimes referred to as “binary”. uses the fewest bytes necessary to achieve the desired precision. “COMP3” (also often referred to as packed decimal. efficiently saves decimal data by storing each decimal digit in a half byte (a packed decimal format..

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    41. Define one use Exit?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL, the EXIT command is used to end the execution of a specific loop or program. 
    • When the EXIT statement appears, it instantly ends the current scope and transfers control to the statement that comes after the code block that has been ended. 
    • It is frequently used to stop a program early or to end a loop depending on specific criteria, giving program flow control and increased efficiency.

    42. Describe some command terminators examples?

    Ans:

    Semicolons (;., newline characters, and particular keywords like “END” or “GOBACK” in COBOL are a few examples of command terminators. The compiler or interpreter can tell where one command finishes and the next one begins by using these terminators, which mark the end of a command or statement. They are necessary for programming languages and command-line interfaces to properly parse and execute syntax.

    43. What distinguishes a call from a link?

    Ans:

    • While both CALL and LINK can be used in COBOL to provide control to a different program or subroutine, they handle program execution differently.
    • When a called program completes its execution, control is returned to the calling program. 
    • CALL assigns control to the called program or subroutine.
    • The called program can now access variables and data from the calling program thanks to LINK, which opens up a new level of program execution.

    44.What mode is the sequential file operated on?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, the mode that is usually used to run a sequential file is “SEQUENTIAL.” In this mode, records are accessed starting from the beginning of the file and going all the way through. Tasks that handle records in a linear fashion, including reading or writing data sequentially without random access, are appropriate for this style of operation. Sequential files are frequently used for batch processing and effective management of massive amounts of data.

    45. Define The maximum value and number of bytes that the S(8. Can a comp field hold?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL, a field designated as S(8. comp takes up 4 bytes of storage. 
    • This is because data is stored in binary format using the “comp” (binary. use type, where each byte holds two numbers. 
    • 32 bits are provided in total with 4 bytes. 
    • Thus, 2^31 1, or 2,147,483,647, is the largest value that can be stored in a S(8. comp field.

    46. In COBOL, how can arrays be defined?

    Ans:

    The OCCURS clause in the data division of COBOL can be used to define arrays. This phrase, which can be connected to any data item, indicates how many times the array appears (elements.. The datatype and any optional qualifiers—like INDEXED BY for subscripting—come after the OCCURS clause. Arrays are a structured data processing and storage solution that may also be defined as individual elements or as tables with numerous dimensions.

    47. How do literals work?

    Ans:

    • Programming literals are fixed values that are used straight from the code without being kept in variables. 
    • They provide specific data pieces for calculations, comparisons, and other operations. 
    • They can be numeric, string, or boolean values. 
    • Literals are immediate values that can be used in expressions, assignments, and conditions since they are constant and do not alter while the program is running. 
    • Boolean values such as TRUE or FALSE, words like “hello”, and numbers like 123 are some examples.

    48. What’s an item on a report?

    Ans:

    A report item is a part of a reporting tool that shows information or data in a report. Text, pictures, tables, charts, and other visual components may be included. Generally, report items are ordered in the report layout such that information is presented in a structured and comprehensible way. They are essential in providing report users with insights and analysis. Users can frequently customise report elements to meet the needs of different audiences and reporting requirements by using customization options.

    49. List the three qualities that make COBOL a business language.

    Ans:

    • Business analysts and programmers find COBOL (Common Business-Oriented Language. 
    • To be easily comprehensible due to its self-documenting nature and ease of reading.
    • It is highly effective at managing massive amounts of data, which makes it a good fit for batch processing jobs that are frequently encountered in business applications.
    • COBOL is a favoured option for sustaining legacy systems due to its durability and resilience, which guarantee business processes continue without requiring regular upgrades or rewrites.

    50. What is Cobol’s length?

    Ans:

    The number of characters or bytes a data item takes up in storage is referred to as its length in COBOL. The data division specifies the size and kind of data, which determines it. In order to provide precise data manipulation and processing within a COBOL program, length is essential for correctly specifying and accessing data items.

    51. In COBOL, how to declare variables?

    Ans:

    • The syntax for declaring variables in the Data Division of COBOL is 01 variable name PIC datatype.
    • “variablename” denotes the variable’s name, while “datatype” indicates the kind of data it will contain, such as alphanumeric (X., numeric (9., or alphabetic (A.. Moreover, variables can be constructed with extra characteristics like size and usage to define the length and the reason behind the data they depict.

    52. What ways may businesses apply COBOL?

    Ans:

    Business applications of COBOL include managing inventory systems, processing massive amounts of data, processing financial transactions, and producing reports. Critical business applications can benefit from its robustness, dependability, and interoperability with legacy systems. With its record-level input/output and report-generating facilities, as well as its business-oriented syntax, COBOL is an excellent choice for implementing business logic and streamlining workflows.

    53. How can multithreading be added to COBOL programs?

    Ans:

    • Multithreading is not supported natively by COBOL, implementing it in COBOL applications is not simple. 
    • It can be done, but, in an indirect way by interacting with third-party multithreading systems or libraries, like Java or C. 
    • Conversely, COBOL By dividing up tasks into independent programs or processes and coordinating their execution using interprocess communication methods like shared memory or message queues, programs can be designed to run in parallel.

    54. In COBOL, what is the distinction between the CALL and LINK statements?

    Ans:

    In COBOL,LINK establishes a new level of program execution and enables the called program to access variables from the calling program, CALL passes control to a called program or subroutine and returns control to the calling program upon completion. Control is then sent back to the caller program, but any modifications made to the shared data are kept.

    55. In COBOL, how can dynamic memory allocation be implemented?

    Ans:

    • The Language Environment (LE. The runtime library in COBOL can be called with the CALL “CBLTDLI” instruction to accomplish dynamic memory allocation. 
    • Functions like “CALLOC” for allocating dynamic memory are provided by this library. 
    • Through the use of these COBOL procedures, programmers can dynamically allocate and deallocate memory as their program runs, making memory management more effective when working with variable sized data structures or dynamic data requirements.

    56. How to deal with mistakes and exceptions in COBOL?

    Ans:

    Errors and exceptions in COBOL can be managed in a number of ways, including condition handling, error codes, and exception handling procedures. While error codes offer a means of communicating error statuses between programs, condition handling entails monitoring for particular conditions throughout program execution and responding appropriately.

    57. What’s a paragraph in COBOL?

    Ans:

    • A designated block of code in a COBOL program that consists of a sequence of statements carrying out a particular operation or function is called a COBOL paragraph. 
    • A distinct name and a period are used to identify paragraphs, which can be called or invoked from other areas of the program. 
    • They offer an organised and modular method for structuring computer logic, encouraging readability and reuse of code.

    58. Name any three COBOL divisions.

    Ans:

    • Identification Division: This division contains the program’s name, creator, and other descriptive information, and it serves as the program’s identification to the compiler.
    • Environment Division: This section details the input/output devices, file requirements, and overall environment in which the program will run.
    • Data Division: File descriptions, record structures, and data types are all defined in this division. This data is used by the application. The FILE SECTION, WORKING STORAGE SECTION, and LINKAGE SECTION are also included.

    59. In COBOL, how to get tables dynamically loaded?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, you can build a variable-length table using the OCCURS DEPENDING ON clause in the Data Division to load the table dynamically. Then, when the software runs, you

    can use compiler-provided language extensions or functions like the CALL ‘CBL_ALLOC_MEM’ statement to dynamically allocate memory. Lastly, you can add data to the table at runtime as needed.

    60. Distinguish between VS COBOL II and OS/VS COBOL.

    Ans:

    • There are two versions of COBOL: VS COBOL II and OS/VS COBOL, which differ in features and improvements. 
    • Comparing VS COBOL II to OS/VS COBOL, improvements were made to the character set support, debugging features, and speed optimizations.
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    61. What object-oriented capabilities does COBOL offer?

    Ans:

    With COBOL85 and later editions, COBOL supports a few object-oriented concepts, such as polymorphism, inheritance, and encapsulation. The object-oriented features of COBOL are not as extensive as those of languages like Java or C++, though.

    62. How does the COBOL program do sorting?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL applications, sorting is usually accomplished with the SORT verb. 
    • This verb allows data in files or arrays to be sorted according to designated sort keys. 
    • The SORT verb takes in incoming records, sorts them based on predetermined standards, and then outputs the sorted data to an array or file. 
    • As an alternative, COBOL applications can also use methods like bubble sort, merge sort, or rapid sort to construct unique sorting algorithms.

    63. What are the precedence rules for arithmetic expressions?

    Ans:

    Usually, sequential reading of input files, one-by-one processing of each record, and sequential writing of output are the characteristics of COBOL programs.

    This sequential processing paradigm fits in nicely with the conventional batch processing systems that are frequently seen in mainframe settings. File handling instructions like OPEN, READ, WRITE, and CLOSE are used by COBOL programs to work with sequential files, which enables them to process enormous amounts of data in an efficient, predictable, and controlled way.

    64. What is a function that is intrinsic?

    Ans:

    • A built-in function, often referred to as an intrinsic function, is one that is included in the standard library of a programming language. 
    • Usually necessary to carry out routine operations, these functions are easily accessible and don’t require the programmer to specify them explicitly. 
    • Functions for input/output, string manipulation, and mathematical computations are a few examples. Efficiency is the design of intrinsic functions.

    65. What kinds of intrinsic functions are there?

    Ans:

    Depending on the situation, the categories of intrinsic functions can change, but generally speaking, they consist of mathematical functions like logarithmic, exponential, and trigonometric functions. Functions for manipulating strings, such as concatenation, substring extraction, and case conversion, go under another category. Lastly, other categories exclusive to their domain, like file I/O functions or networking functions, may exist for particular languages or systems.

    66. What causes ABEND to occur?

    Ans:

    • Abnormal End, or ABEND, usually happens in computer systems when a program runs into an unforeseen problem or a situation that it is unable to manage. 
    • Numerous factors, including hardware malfunctions, programming problems, and insufficient system resources, may cause this. 
    • Program termination is frequently the outcome of ABENDs, and system administrators or developers may need to step in to identify and fix the underlying problem.

    67. What are the greatest ways to steer clear of ABEND?

    Ans:

    • Conduct exhaustive testing Test your applications frequently, using both unit and integration testing, to find any possible problems or errors before they arise in production.
    • Apply appropriate error management: Include error handling functions in your code to deal with unforeseen circumstances politely and avoid ABENDs.
    • Adhere to coding guidelines: Follow coding guidelines and best practices to produce clear, understandable, and maintainable code that is less prone to mistakes.
    • Keep an eye on system resources: Make sure that memory, CPU utilisation, and disk space are not running low, as this can result in ABENDs.
    • Update and maintain systems frequently: To fix any known vulnerabilities or problems that could result in ABENDs, keep your software and systems updated with the most recent patches and upgrades.

    68. Describe the variations between COBOL’s static and dynamic calls.

    Ans:

    In COBOL, static calls are resolved at compile time, which means that the program is aware of the precise function or subroutine to call before it is executed. Static calls become more rapid and effective as a result, but they are less flexible because they cannot be altered in runtime.Dynamic calls are resolved at runtime, providing greater flexibility as During program execution, the subroutine or function to be called can be found. However, because of the runtime resolution process, dynamic calls are sometimes slower and may result in overhead.

    69. Explain the COBOL verb “INSPECT” and list some typical uses ?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL, the INSPECT verb is used to look for and work with characters inside a data item. 
    • Its goal is to analyse or change data using a variety of procedures, such as character translation, character replacement, or count of occurrences. 
    • The parsing of input data, formatting of output data, data validation, and data transformation in accordance with particular needs in business applications are common scenarios whereINSPECT is employed. 
    • It offers a strong tool for effectively managing character manipulation chores in COBOL systems.

    70. Distinguishes a SEARCH statement from a SEARCH ALL statement?

    Ans:

    A SEARCH command in COBOL is used to iteratively search a table for a particular value and then take appropriate action in response to the finding. Once a match is identified, the search is terminated.

    A SEARCH ALL command can similarly be used to look for a certain value in a table, but it keeps looking even after a match is discovered. This enables it to locate every instance of the given value in the table.

    71. What does the COBOL SET verb mean, and how is it different from the MOVE word?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL, a data item can be given a value by using the SET verb. 
    • Usually, it’s applied when the value either when initialising variables or when a constant is assigned. 
    • In contrast, data can be moved from one data item to another using the MOVE verb. 
    • Both can be used to assign values, however MOVE is meant for broad data transfer between variables, whereas SET is meant exclusively for constant value assignment.

    72. Define the term “initialise.” When would you use it?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, one or more data objects can be initialised with specified values using the INITIALIZE verb. It is usually used to specify initial values for variables at the start of a program or operation. This makes it possible to guarantee that, prior to processing, variables have consistent values. Numerical variables can be reset to zero by using the INITIALIZE verb.

    73. What does the COBOL OCCURS clause mean and how is it used?

    Ans:

    • In COBOL, one or more data objects can be initialised with specified values using the INITIALIZE verb. 
    • It is usually used to specify initial values for variables at the start of a program or operation. 
    • This makes it possible to guarantee that, prior to processing, variables have consistent values. 
    • Setting default settings for data items, resetting flags, and initialising numeric variables to zero can all be accomplished with the INITIALIZE verb.

    74. In terms of error trapping, what are ONE SIZE ERROR options?

    Ans:

    In COBOL applications, mistakes of a certain size can be handled in input/output operations by using the “ONE SIZE ERROR” option for capturing errors. It makes it possible for the application to identify and address data item-related mistakes.that are larger than a given size. This option ensures that the application can manage data that exceeds expected dimensions without triggering unexpected behaviour or crashes, which is especially helpful when working with input data that may vary in size. It ensures the dependability of COBOL programs handling variable sized data and offers a framework for strong error management.

    75. Which FILE STATUS codes are frequently used to identify errors?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, the following FILE STATUS numbers are frequently used to identify errors:

    •  “00” The file operation has successfully completed.
    •  “02” File not accessible.
    •  The read error “04”
    •  “10” File end reached.
    •  “37” Conflicting or invalid file access.

    76. Describe the distinction in COBOL between the PERFORM and CALL statements.

    Ans:

    The PERFORM command in COBOL allows the same piece of code to be executed again by executing iteratively based on a condition or loop control variable. The CALL command, on the other hand, is used to call a different program or subroutine, giving it control and maybe exchanging data between the caller and the callee. CALL is used for modularization and calling external routines or programs, whereas PERFORM is used for loop control and repetitive execution within the same program.

    77. In COBOL, which mode do you use to manage a sequential file?

    Ans:

    • To operate a sequence in COBOL, you usually utilise the INPUT, OUTPUT, or IO (InputOutput. mode. 
    • A file’s contents are read using the INPUT mode.
    • Write data to a file using the OUTPUT mode.
    • Within the same program, reading from and writing to files is possible thanks to IO mode.
    • These modes, which are stated in the program’s data division’s FILE CONTROL section, define the kinds of operations that are allowed on the file.

    78. What precisely are NOSSRANGE and SSRANGE?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, SSRANGE and NOSSRANGE are compiler parameters that regulate how subscript checking behaves while working with arrays.

    Subscript checking, which keeps array indices within predefined bounds and helps avoid out-of-range problems that can cause software crashes or erroneous results, is enabled by SSRANGE.

    By removing the overhead of subscript validation, NOSSRANGE can enhance program performance.

    verifying the bounds of the array. It should be used cautiously because this also implies that programs might be more prone to mistakes brought on by accessing arrays outside of limits.

    79. What is a copybook in COBOL? What advantages come with making use of these?

    Ans:

    • A copybook in COBOL is a stand-alone file that can be used in various COBOL applications and holds common variables, data structures, and/or procedure declarations.
    • Reusing code is one of the advantages of copybooks; they let programmers develop procedures and data structures only once and use them in different programs. 
    • centralising the specification of common elements, copybooks also help to promote uniformity across programs by lowering the possibility of errors and simplifying maintenance.

    80. What are the three elements that make up COBOL as a business language?

    Ans:

    The three parts of COBOL as a business language are as follows:

    • Data Division: Specifies the program’s data structures, such as variables, records, and files. It describes the structure, properties, and arrangement of the data pieces.
    • Procedure Division: Consists of the program’s real procedural logic, which includes the steps taken to process the data specified in the Data Division and the orders, calculations, and operations carried out on it.
    • File Handling: Programs may communicate with external data sources like databases, flat files, and sequential files thanks to COBOL’s built-in support for reading from and writing to files.
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    81. Explain Call By Content and Call By Reference in COBOL.

    Ans:

    In COBOL, there are two parameter passing mechanisms: Call By Reference and Call By Content.

    • Call By Reference: In this method, the called subroutine or function receives the address or reference of the real parameter. The original value in the calling program is impacted by any changes made to the parameter within the procedure.
    • Call By Content: This method passes the parameter’s real value to the called function or subroutine. Since only a duplicate of the value is given, changes made to the parameter inside the subroutine have no effect on the original value in the caller application.

    82. How comes performance, which is the default—testing before or after?

    Ans:

    To a PERFORM statement, which is the default? TEST BEFORE or TEST AFTER?

    TEST BEFORE is the standard condition for a PERFORM statement in COBOL. This indicates that the loop’s initial iteration is preceded by an evaluation of the condition given in the PERFORM statement, which determines whether the loop should run at all.

    83. What is the purpose of the linking section, and how is it used?

    Ans:

    In COBOL, data items that are transmitted between programs during program invocation are defined in the linkage section of the Data Division.

    The section on links functions as a communication interface that helps programs communicate with one another and exchange data. It facilitates communication and interaction between programs, allowing for code modularization and reuse. Furthermore, by outlining the relationship between various program modules in detail, the linkage section aids in maintaining the separation of concerns.

    84.How to create a COBOL application suitable for usage in a dispersed setting?

    Ans:

    • In a distributed setting, a COBOL program usually uses message passing protocols like IBM MQ or Apache Kafka, or remote procedure calls, or RPCs, to communicate with other systems or components.
    • To communicate with other systems over the network, the software can make use of COBOL’s built-in support for network communication protocols like TCP/IP or HTTP.
    • To address network problems and provide resilience, it should have error handling and recovery procedures.
    • To safeguard private information sent over a network, the program may additionally include security features like authentication and encryption.

    85. What does COBOL’s PIC clause mean?

    Ans:

    The format and properties of data objects are defined in COBOL by the PIC (Picture. clause. It describes the format, size, and kind of data, including strings of alphanumeric characters, numeric data types, and other data structures. Programmers can describe how data should be kept and handled by the compiler, as well as how data should be represented in a human-readable format, using the PIC clause.

    86. Explain the function of a COBOL program’s ENVIRONMENT DIVISION and its significance for managing dependencies in the computer environment.

    Ans:

    • A COBOL program’s ENVIRONMENT DIVISION specifies the requirements of the computing environment. 
    • Specifies setup parameters necessary for the operation of the software. 
    • It contains sections that outline the software, hardware, and data access techniques utilised by the application, such as the INPUT OUTPUT SECTION and CONFIGURATION SECTION.
    • It enables programs to be built and deployed on several platforms without requiring significant adjustments by abstracting environment-specific features.

    87. What is the layout in COBOL?

    Ans:

    The arrangement and structure of the COBOL source code, which includes the divisions, sections, paragraphs, and statements, is referred to as the COBOL layout. It helps with readability, maintainability, and comprehension of the functioning of the program by outlining the logical flow and links between various program pieces.

    88. In COBOL, what is the difference between an index and a subscript?

    Ans:

    • A subscript, which is usually a number given in parenthesis after the array name, indicates an element’s position or location within an array.
    • Conversely, an index is a numerical variable that can be used to dynamically access particular elements depending on computations or conditions, or to traverse through an array’s contents in a loop.
    • Indexes are dynamic and subject to manipulation while a program is running, whereas subscripts are static and defined at build time.
    • Indexes are typically employed for iteratively navigating arrays, whereas subscripts provide immediate access to array elements.

    89. What does the clause “NUMERIC” mean?

    Ans:

    Determine whether a data item exclusively contains numeric characters, the EVALUATE statement in COBOL uses the IS NUMERIC clause, a conditional operator. If the data item is made up only of numeric characters, it evaluates to true, enabling conditional branching based on the data’s content.

    90.What are the COBOL concepts?

    Ans:

    • The fundamentals of the COBOL programming language, written by Sebastian De.
    • BASIC CONCEPTS. Because COBOL is a sequential programming language, commands are executed line by line from top to bottom. 
    • One crucial rule of syntax is that there must be a dot after every statement. There are four sections in any COBOL program: process, data, environment, and identification.

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