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Display program information with two simple commands

How many of your objects were affected by a modification? Here's an easy way to find out.

As programmers, we are constantly modifying programs, isolating "product" source files, or just trying to estimate the number of objects affected by a modification. There are two commands that can assist you in these tasks.

The first command is the "DSPPGM" (Display Program) command. You may display on screen or print this information. This will display the library, file and member used to create the program. It will also display the source change date and time, which may be different from the changed date and time found on the "WRKOBJ" (Work Object) command. The DSPPGM command is extremely useful when comparing programs to their source files.

The second command used in displaying program information is "DSPPGMREF" (Display Program References). This command provides a list of objects that are used by a program. You have three options when reviewing this information. You may display on screen, select a printed copy, or create a file. It is the file that gives this command its flexibility.

You can produce an output file of all programs in a library, then use that file to query the references. Since the file lists a single record for each reference, a program may easily be built to view them. If you are using file overrides, this command may not be as accurate as you may like.

When used, these two commands can help you isolate source codes, identify source-changed dates and assist in identifying objects that are affected by modifications.

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About the author: John Kohan is a senior programmer analyst at CT Codeworks.

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