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MVS TSO, Part 2: Commands, CLIST, and REXX

by Doug Lowe
10 chapters, 450 pages, 240 illustrations
Published 1991, new cover design in 2002
ISBN 978-0-911625-57-8
Print: $42.50

On an IBM mainframe running any MVS-related operating system (the current release is z/OS), you can use TSO/ISPF to do everyday tasks of program development or you can use TSO commands directly. You can also combine TSO commands into procedures using TSO's procedure facilities: CLIST and REXX. This is our classic book on using TSO commands, CLIST, and REXX that was published in 1991.

Today, it doesn't make sense to update a book like this because the mainframe book market has become so small. But if you're working on a mainframe, most of the information in this book is still useful. One reason is that IBM has always prided itself on the upward-compatibility of its software.

Incidentally, this book was published before we converted to our "paired pages" format. This was still the best-selling book on the subject, though, because there has always been a lot more to our books than our paired clear, concise writing, practical examples, and the right content presented in the right order for effective training and reference.

If I’d had this book last year, I could have saved myself literally hundreds of hours of work. As an operator who is trying to build credentials as a programmer, I can tell you that knowledge is indeed power, and this book has plenty of it."

C. K., Computer Operator, Camp Hill, Pennsylvania 

  • About this Book
  • Table of Contents
  • Reviews

Who this book is for

Although this book was written when MVS was the primary operating system on large IBM mainframes, it still works for anyone who uses TSO under any MVS successor (the current one is z/OS). That includes beginning and experienced programmers, application and system programmers, and computer operators.

The only prerequisite is a basic knowledge of ISPF, enough so that you can access the TSO Command option to enter TSO commands and edit library members that contain CLIST or REXX procedures. If you aren’t familiar with ISPF, take a look at the first book in this series, MVS TSO, Part 1: Concepts and ISPF.

What you’ll learn in this book

If you're an ISPF user, this book starts by teaching you how to use the TSO commands that underlie the ISPF options, so you have more control over operating system functions. You'll also learn what key tasks must be done using TSO commands because they can't be done with ISPF options.

Next, this book shows you how to combine those TSO commands into time-saving procedures for the jobs you do most often, using either of TSO's procedure facilities—CLIST or REXX. So you'll learn:

  • how to write and use edit macros that let you tailor the ISPF editor to your working style
  • how to use ISPF dialog manager to create CLIST or REXX procedures that interact with the terminal user via full-screen panels
  • how to use symbolic variables, built-in functions, and subprocedures in CLIST
  • how to use arrays, the stack, and parsing commands in REXX

Companion books

MVS TSO, Part 1: Concepts and ISPF

Part 2 of this two-part series assumes that you're already familiar with ISPF. If you aren't or if your knowledge of ISPF is sketchy, this first book in the series will take care of that.

Murach's OS/390 and z/OS JCL

This book shows you how to use Job Control Language (JCL) to compile and execute your programs. Since several ISPF options rely on JCL, you won't last long in an IBM environment without knowing how to use JCL.

To view the table of contents for this book in a PDF, just click on the link below:

Table of Contents

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