First, how can we run an editor in batch mode where we can then manipulate a file, including adding, deleting and inserting records? Secondly, is there any kind of compression tools or utilities available that will allow us to compress files as we process and decompress files as we access them? Thirdly, is there any way we can sort files using an ASCII sort sequence. We would need to do that both externally and internally in our COBOL programs.
Regarding your second question, yes there are compression tools, click here -- however, you should look at the costs of compression in terms of time & resources against cost of disk space. If you have enough space not to need compression, it's obviously better to not compress.
And last but not least, your third question. I believe that if your files are converted to DB/400 format they will be converted to EBCDIC. If you leave them in their native (ASCII) format they will have to be located in the IFS and could not be worked with directly in COBOL programs running under OS/400. You need advice from whoever is doing the conversion for you.
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