1. Get TK4- MVS Sofware
  2. Get wc3270 Terminal Emulator
  3. Install wc3270 Terminal Emulator
  4. Install and Run MVS 3.8j
  5. Logging In to/Out of MVS 3.8j
  6. Shutting down MVS 3.8j from TSO
  7. Using TSO RFE Application
  8. Adding a User
  9. Creating Datasets
  10. JCL Overview
  11. Your First Cobol Program
  12. Your First Assembler Program
  13. Your First Fortran Program
  14. Your First PL/1 Program

Your First 370 Assembler Program

000001 WRMSG    START                                                     
000002          STM   14,12,12(13)        STORE REGISTERS IN CALLERS AREA  
000003          BALR  12,0                SETUP REGISTER 12 AS BASE        
000004          USING *,12                                                 
000005          ST    13,SAVEAREA+4       STORE ADDRESS OF CALLERS AREA    
000006          LA    13,SAVEAREA         ESTABLISH OUR SAVEAREA           
000009 *  INDEPENDENT I/O])                                                  
000010 *                                                                     
000011          OPEN   (SYSPRINT,OUTPUT)                                   
000012          PUT    SYSPRINT,HELLOMSG                                   
000013          CLOSE  SYSPRINT                                            
000014 * RESTORE  THE SAVEAREA TO THE REGISTERS                              
000015          L      13,SAVEAREA+4      RESTORE CALLERS R 13             
000016          LM     14,12,12(13)       RESTORE CALLERS REGISTERS        
000017          LA     15,0               RETURN CODE                      
000018          BR     14                 RETURN                           
000019 *                                                                     
000020 SAVEAREA DS   18F 
000021 HELLOMSG DC   C' HELLO WORLD '                                        
000023                RECFM=FBA,LRECL=166,BLKSIZE=16600                      
000024          END  WRMSG    

Assembler is the first compiler written for a new operating system. It is easily translatable to the machine code that the computer uses.

Creating a source dataset

The creation of a source dataset along with the first member is covered in the First COBOL program. Create another source dataset named 'learn.asemblr.src' and create a member 'firstasm'.

Assembler is an interesting programming language. It is closest to the actual hardware. Since it is so close to the hardware, it also, when written correctly, executes faster than the other programming languages.

One thing that is unique about assembler is that to run propertly it has to establish linkage with the calling or any called program. This is not required when programming in COBOL, FORTRAN, or PL/1.

Let's go over the assembler code

Line #Description
1This is the start of the program and needs a name. The name to this is WRMSG.
2There are values in the registers that have significance to the calling progam. Register 13 points the the calling program's save area. And this statement copies all register from register 14 through register 12 into the area twelve bytes into the save area. So the order that these registers are saved are 14,15,0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11, and 12. Notice that register 13 is not copied.
3-4These establish register 12 as the base register and the USING statement establishes the contents of register 12 to be the next executable statement (11).
5This statement stores register 13 into the area four bytes into the savearea in our program. This effective save the address of the caller's save area.
6This statement loads the address of our savearea into register 13.
11This executes the assembler macro OPEN and opens our DCB SYSPRINT as output.
12This executes the PUT macro telling it to put the data described HELLOMSG onto the output file SYSPRINT.
13The executes the CLOSE macro which closes the output file SYSPRINT.
15Restores register 13 with the area where we saved it on line 5. This now make register 13 point to the save area in the caller's program.
16This restores the registers 12 bytes from the beginning of the callers save area. This is the reverse of line 5
17This loads register 15 with a value of 0. Register 15 contains the return code by convention.
18This returns to the statement referenced by register 14.
20This is our programs save area. It reguires a space of 18 full words. That allows it to hold the 15 registers 14, 15, 0 - 12. Plus space for three registers at the front of the save area.
21This is the definition of the character variable HELLOMSG.
22-23This is the definition of the SYSPRINT Data Control Block. It's DSORG is PS meaning it is a sequential file, MACRF is PM meaning it is a PUT DCB, DDNAME is SYSPRINT, RECFM memans it is Fixed Block, LRECL means the record length is 166 characters, BLKSIZE means the blocksize is 100 records.
24This indicates that it is the end of the source module WRMSG. Notice that this is the same name as the START module name.

You can take lines 1 - 13, 14-20, and line 24, put them in a copy src and then whenever you are writing an assembler program copy that into a new member and you already have your linkage done for you.

Compile, Link, and Go

Now that we have a dataset member containing our ASSEMBLER program we are not finished. We need a way to assemble the source, link it with any link modules that are needed and execute the resulting program. There are two ways that will be discussed here on how to accomplish the compile, link, and go.

  • JCL Job Stream with embedded source
  • JCL Job Stream with external source
Embedded Source

          000001 //RLAWW1   JOB (WRMSG),'WRT MSG TO PRT',                              
          000002 //           CLASS=A,MSGCLASS=H,MSGLEVEL=(1,1)                        
          000003 //STEP01   EXEC ASMFCG,PARM.ASM=(OBJ,NODECK),MAC1='SYS2.MACLIB'       
          000004 //ASM.SYSIN DD *                                                      
          000005 WRMSG    START 0                                                      
          000006          STM   14,12,12(13)        STORE REGISTERS IN CALLERS AREA    
          000007          BALR  12,0                SETUP REGISTER 12 AS BASE          
          000008          USING *,12                                                   
          000009          ST    13,SAVEAREA+4       STORE ADDRESS OF CALLERS AREA      
          000010          LA    13,SAVEAREA         ESTABLISH OUR SAVEAREA             
          000013 *  INDEPENDENT I/O])                                                  
          000014 *                                                                     
          000015          OPEN   (SYSPRINT,OUTPUT)                                     
          000016          PUT    SYSPRINT,HELLOMSG                                     
          000017          CLOSE  SYSPRINT                                              
          000018 * RESTORE  THE SAVEAREA TO THE REGISTERS                              
          000019          L      13,SAVEAREA+4      RESTORE CALLERS R 13               
          000020          LM     14,12,12(13)       RESTORE CALLERS REGISTERS          
          000021          LA     15,0               RETURN CODE                        
          000022          BR     14                 RETURN                             
          000023 *                                                                     
          000024 SAVEAREA DS   18F
          000025 HELLOMSG DC   C' HELLO WORLD '                     
          000027                RECFM=FBA,LRECL=166,BLKSIZE=16600   
          000028          END WRMSG                                 
          000029 /*                                                 
          000030 //GO.SYSPRINT DD SYSOUT=*                          
          000031 //

When the source code is embedded in a jcl job steam then the DD that references the input for the compile step is coded as a "here" document. Notice line 4 in the above images. It says //ASM.SYSIN DD *. This statement means that in the ASM step (which is part of the exec procedure) has a SYSIN DD that this job stream is providing as in instream dataset. This is done in lines 5 - 28 followed by a line that says /* which means end of instream dataset.

The next to last line (line 30) is for the GO step of the job and is referenced in programs as the SYSPRINT file. Notice line 26 of the program where is defines that the file SYSPRINT in the assembler program is externally SYSPRINT. The GO.SYSPRINT jcl statement says the the output is based on the job parameters and its DCB (DATA CONTROL BLOCK) is Fixed Block A, record length is 166, and block size is 16600. The And the organizaton is a physical sequenal file and it uses the macro PM which is the put macro this line is followed by line 31 which marks the end of the job stream.

The advantage to have the assembler source as a "here" document in the job stream is that you can modify the source, save it, and submit it all on one screen.

External Source

//RLAWAS   JOB (WRMSG),'WRT MSG TO PRT',                             
//           CLASS=A,MSGCLASS=H,MSGLEVEL=(1,1)                       
//GO.SYSPRINT DD SYSOUT=*                                            

The advantage to having the JCL seperate from the assembler source is that there is only one copy of the JCL and it is reusable with changing the ASM.SYSIN DSN name. Also, if the assembler program was large, as many of them are it is easier to have the assembler progam seperate and the steps to build would be standard for all programs.