COBOL Source File Browser

The COBOL Source File Browser reads a COBOL source file and produces a fully browsable HTML equivalent with hyperlinked cross-references for all identifiers. Every identifier in the source code (public or local) acts as a link to its corresponding source definition and to all uses of that identifier anywhere in the file. This provides a convenient method for programmers to view the source code. It can help cut down the 50% of the time that programmers typically spend just looking at source code. It is also ideal for code reviews. Generating a browsable equivalent for every COBOL source file after each check-in and placing it on your intranet would make current sources easily available to developers and support engineers as online reference.

COBOL Browser Features

  • Produces HTML equivalent web page for a COBOL source file
  • Full cross reference of all identifiers hyperlinked to all uses
  • Each identifier hyperlinked to definition and all uses according to language rules.
  • ANSI COBOL 85 with IBM VS COBOL II extensions (can customize for other dialects)

You can experience Browser results applied to a largish COBOL program. The program is shown in 4 areas:

  • Right pane: prettyprinted scrollable text for the program. You can use the IE explorer FIND command to search in this window if you like. You will see highlighted links for every programmer-defined name. Mousing over a link will cause information about the definition to appear in the status bar. Clicking on a link will scroll the window to the definition of that name. If a name is multiply defined in different scopes, it will take you to the definition in the proper scope. This also changes the lower left pane to show all references to name.
  • Upper left pane: cross reference of all names in the program. If a name is multiply defined in different scopes, it will appear here once per definition. Mousing over a name causes information about that name to appear in the status bar, without affecting the right pane. Clicking on a name here positions the right pane to the actual definition, and changes the lower left pane to show all references to that name.
  • Lower left pane: shows a selected name, a link to the definition (1st entry) for that name, and links to all uses. Mousing over the name shows definition properties in the staus bar. Clicking on links scrolls the right pane to the corresponding definition/use of the name.
  • Status bar: shows a useful summary of definition properties of a a moused-over name in the other 3 panes. For COBOL, this usually provides offset and size information of data items.

Download an evaluation copy

The Source Code Browser is a derivative of SD's family of Source Code Formatters. Inquire for custom features. Autoextraction of manually-inserted structured documenation comments can also be implemented, as well as autoextraction of data and subroutine declarations if not already present. Similar browsers can be constructed for other languages.

See other COBOL tools.

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File Browser