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Enterprise COBOL for z/OS 4.2 withdrawn from service on 30 April 2022

By Nicole Trudeau posted Tue April 26, 2022 03:07 PM

Enterprise COBOL for z/OS 4.2 will be withdrawn from service 30 April 2022. Code compiled with Enterprise COBOL 4.2 and earlier will continue to run after 30 April 2022. An extended support contract will be required to open support cases related to problems with the Enterprise COBOL for z/OS 4.2 compiler after 30 April 30 2022 and to have access to future APAR fixes. The Enterprise COBOL runtime remains supported as a component of z/OS Language Environment (LE). Enterprise COBOL for z/OS 4.2 can continue to be used without support but is not recommended.

Clients are recommended to upgrade to the latest Enterprise COBOL for z/OS 6.4 compiler to get the best value out of their IBM zSystems hardware and to take advantage of the latest language features such as JSON support, AMODE 64 (64-bit) application generation, interoperability of 64-bit applications with 31-bit applications, new COBOL/Java interoperability, and UTF-8 support. COBOL 6.4 was announced on 5 April 2022 and will be generally available 27 May 2022.
If you have not completed your migration to Enterprise COBOL 4.2 by 30 April 2022, here are some options available to you:

What's on the
COBOL Migration Portal?
Visit the COBOL Migration Portal for Enterprise COBOL for z/OS migration-related information, including:
  • Case studies
  • COBOL expert interview videos
  • The cloud-based COBOL Migration Assistant for a navigation through the migration process
  • COBOL Migration and Performance Tuning Webinars
  • Ask an Expert for contacting COBOL experts
  • FAQs
  • Other IBM products to support your migration, and
  • Many other resources
The COBOL Migration Portal can help ease your migration efforts from COBOL 4 or earlier to COBOL 6. 
How can IBM Automatic Binary Optimizer for z/OS reduce migration scope?
You do not have to recompile all your programs with COBOL 6 to get a performance boost. For the programs that are not in your recompilation plan, use IBM Automatic Binary Optimizer for z/OS (ABO) to get comparable performance to a COBOL 6 recompile, but with much less effort.
New in ABO 2.2, Enterprise COBOL 5 and 6 modules are eligible for ABO optimization, meaning ABO can be part of your migration and performance strategy not just now for your COBOL 4.2 modules, but in the future as well. With ABO 2.2, modules you compile today with COBOL 6 can take advantage of future IBM zSystems hardware enhancements without needing further recompiles.

IBM Consulting - COBOL Upgrade Services
Mainframe Application Modernization Services from IBM Consulting help clients to modernize and integrate their IBM zSystems applications and data in an enterprise hybrid cloud ecosystem. This helps to achieve innovation and business agility with reduced risk and cost. Improving performance efficiency of core IBM Z applications is essential to meet the digital needs of enterprises. COBOL Upgrade Services is one of the many mainframe modernization patterns from IBM Consulting. IBM consultants can help clients with their strategy and capacity to migrate applications from older IBM COBOL compilers to Enterprise COBOL for z/OS 6 and reduce cost with optimized code. Optimization of COBOL modules with IBM Automatic Binary Optimizer for z/OS is also available. Clients can incorporate agility in their digital transformation with expertise and services from IBM Consulting.

Why purchase an IBM Software Support Extension?
For an additional fee, clients may choose to get a Software Support Extension for peace of mind while they complete their migration. It may also be a company's internal policy that all software in use must have an active support contract.