Microsoft KB Archive/37032
COBOL 3.00 ISAM Files May Fail With Microsoft Standalone Sort PSS ID Number: Q37032 Article last modified on 10-21-1988 PSS database name: B_SORT
Microsoft Standalone SORT Version 1.01 is a sorting and merging facility that is sold separately from either COBOL or MS-DOS. A client has reported that Microsoft SORT Version 1.01 will not sort ISAM (Indexed Sequential Access Method) files created in Microsoft COBOL Version 3.00. Two workaround solutions for COBOL Versions 3.00 are provided further below.
Microsoft released Standalone SORT Version 1.01 in 1984. Microsoft SORT was not designed to sort ISAM files from COBOL Version 3.00, which Microsoft released in 1988. Instead, COBOL Version 3.00 has a built-in SORT verb that allows you to write your own sorting routines.
Standalone SORT works properly with the ISAM files of Microsoft COBOL Versions 1.07, 1.10, 1.12, 2.00, 2.10, and 2.20. (SORT also works with IBM COBOL Version 1.00.)
The following are two workaround methods to sort a COBOL Version 3.00 file with Microsoft Standalone SORT:
Create a line sequential file from the data in the ISAM file, then SORT this copy and make a new ISAM file from the sorted line sequential file.
Note: The following method DOES NOT apply to COBOL versions earlier than 3.00:
An ISAM file consists of two disk files, a key file (of type .IDX) and a data file (of type .DAT). In COBOL 3.00, the .DAT file is line sequential. Therefore, you may sort the .DAT file using Standalone SORT’s SEQUENTIAL organization (see Page 37 of the “Microsoft SORT for MS-DOS Reference Manual: Standalone Version”), and then REBUILD the ISAM file.
Copyright Microsoft Corporation 1988.