Run COBOL / gnuCOBOL using Cygwin in Windows

Submitted by Dickens A S on Sun, 08/23/2020 - 11:00
Run COBOL in windows

Why COBOL in 2020?

The reason is, many migration still happening from mainframe COBOL to Java or .NET

If the developer knows how test the COBOL in his local machine, then it benefits the migration to speed up

This article demonstrates the Cygwin dependencies to compile gnuCOBOL from source code

Install Cygwin with below list of dependencies

  • gettext
  • gettext-devel
  • gcc
  • g++
  • fcntl
  • gmp
  • gmp-devel
  • mpfr-devel
  • mpfr
  • db
  • db-devel
  • libncurses
  • libncurses-devel
  • zlib
  • zlib-devel
  • lzma
  • lzma-devel
  • libiconv-devel
  • python38
  • python38-devel

Compile and install cJSON

Download cJSON https://github.com/DaveGamble/cJSON/archive/v1.7.13.tar.gz

modify "Makefile"

PREFIX ?= /usr

run make and make install

$ make
$ make install
mkdir -p /usr/lib /usr/include/cjson
cp -a cJSON.h /usr/include/cjson
cp -a libcjson.so libcjson.so.1 libcjson.so.1.7.13 /usr/lib
cp -a cJSON_Utils.h /usr/include/cjson
cp -a libcjson_utils.so libcjson_utils.so.1 libcjson_utils.so.1.7.13 /usr/lib

Download and install libxml2

The source code is located at ftp://xmlsoft.org/libxml2/libxml2-git-snapshot.tar.gz

Run the below commands

$ ./configure --prefix=/usr

config.status: executing libtool commands
Done configuring

$ make CFLAGS='-I/usr/include/python3.8' CXXFLAGS='-I/usr/include/python3.8'

$ make install

make[1]: Leaving directory

Download gnuCOBOL

The source code is located at https://excellmedia.dl.sourceforge.net/project/gnucobol/gnucobol/3.1/gnucobol-3.1-rc1_win.zip

Unzip and run below commands

$ ./configure --prefix=/usr

configure:  Use gettext for international messages:      yes
configure:  Use fcntl for file locking:                  yes
configure:  Use math multiple precision library:         gmp
configure:  Use curses library for screen I/O:           ncursesw
configure:  Use Berkeley DB for ISAM I/O:                yes
configure:  Use libxml2 for XML I/O:                     yes
configure:  Use cJSON for JSON I/O:                      no

$ make

$ make install

If you are using MSYS2 then the gnucobol already available for install with pacman

Check gnuCOBOL Version

$ cobc --version
cobc (GnuCOBOL) 3.1-rc1.0
Copyright (C) 2020 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later <https://gnu.org/licenses/gpl.html>
This is free software; see the source for copying conditions.  There is NO
warranty; not even for MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
Written by Keisuke Nishida, Roger While, Ron Norman, Simon Sobisch, Edward Hart
Built     Aug 23 2020 17:36:16
Packaged  Jul 01 2020 00:39:30 UTC
C version "9.3.0"

Example COBOL code "test.cob"

       IDENTIFICATION DIVISION.
       PROGRAM-ID. HELLO-WORLD.

       DATA DIVISION. 
       WORKING-STORAGE SECTION.
       01 WS-OUT PIC X(80) VALUE SPACES.
       01 WS-N PIC 9(2) VALUE 0. 
       01 WS-CENTER PIC 9(2) VALUE 20.

       PROCEDURE DIVISION.

       PERFORM VARYING WS-N FROM 1 BY 2 UNTIL WS-N > 26
       MOVE ALL '*' TO WS-OUT(WS-CENTER:WS-N)
       COMPUTE WS-CENTER = WS-CENTER - 1
       DISPLAY WS-OUT
       END-PERFORM.

       STOP RUN.

Compile COBOL

$ cobc -x test.cob
test.cob:19: warning: line not terminated by a newline

Run the EXE

$ ./test
                   *
                  ***
                 *****
                *******
               *********
              ***********
             *************
            ***************
           *****************
          *******************
         *********************
        ***********************
       *************************

 

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