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FILE versus DATASET

 
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jerryte

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Joined: 29 Oct 2010
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Location: Toronto, ON, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 10:47 pm    Post subject: FILE versus DATASET
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My early years of computing was on everything from a original PC to a original Macintosh. Everything was called a "file". My first job was at a mainframe shop where it is called a "dataset". I soon learned that IBM has their own way of naming things. They even developed their own character set instead of using ASCII. To be fair IBM has been at the computing game a lot longer then Microsoft or Apple.

The name is different but the function is the same. It is bytes of data stored in an external format that can then be read and updated by other programs. I don't make fuss about a name. It is six of one or half a dozen of the other.

Unless someone says they want to run a SPUFI and then I remind them of the difference.
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vasanthz

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Joined: 28 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 11:42 pm    Post subject:
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Quote:
I don't make fuss about a name. It is six of one or half a dozen of the other.


I second this.
http://www.ibmmainframeforum.com/tso-ispf/topic11881.html?hilit=terminology

Even programming languages like SAS use INFILE, OUTFILE, FILENAME statements when referencing mainframe datasets/files

Maybe there should be a poll to decide if it is ok or not :-)
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don.leahy

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Joined: 06 Jul 2010
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Location: Whitby, ON, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 12:33 am    Post subject:
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I once heard a mainframe philosopher proclaim that a "data set" becomes a "file" only after it has been opened. A "file" has a logical structure that cannot be known until its container is opened. A "data set" is that container.

Discuss among yourselves. icon_neutral.gif
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RahulG31

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Joined: 20 Dec 2014
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 12:50 am    Post subject: Reply to: FILE versus DATASET
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Not again please..

http://ibmmainframes.com/about65400.html

.
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don.leahy

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 1:47 am    Post subject:
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I recently wrote a document that attempted to explain mainframe technology to non-mainframe professionals. I told them not to be confused when a mainframer says "Data set" and that most of us use "Data Set" and "File" interchangeably. So do many IBM manuals.

For what it is worth, and it ain't worth much, I try to use the term "Data Set" when talking about the mainframe and "File" when talking about other platforms.
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vasanthz

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 3:17 am    Post subject:
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....
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Nic Clouston

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Joined: 10 May 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply to: FILE versus DATASET
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Inside a program when you issue an OPEN on your file you are not opening the dataset but you are opening the 'pipeline' down which the bytes flow from the data set. This 'pipeline' has the same name as the DD statement that specifies the data set.

The data in the data set is not stored exactly as the program sees it - it has gaps between blocks, for example. Even tapes have inter-block gaps and therefore the data is held in a data set.

Somewhere, on one of the forums, I posted an extract from a PL/1 manual that explained the difference.

Yes, we understand that when someone says 'file' they probably mean data set but if they say 'data set' then they do mean data set, but that does not mean that they should get their terminology wrong once they are made aware of the fault.
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daveporcelan

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Joined: 01 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 5:09 pm    Post subject:
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Quote:
but that does not mean that they should get their terminology wrong once they are made aware of the fault.


Differentiation between the two is very much behind the scene and not simple for most if not all people to understand.

Yet on the OP second post, people on this forum are all over this persons case 'yelling' in large bold face type.

I think as though we have gotten way off the point of answering posts to help people out.

Instead we are caught up in the make sure people know they are WRONG.

When in fact, the COBOL manual mentions file 1800+ plus times, and data set just a few.

Why can't the technical experts just let go trying to explain the minute differences between File and Data Set, and feeling the need to yell at people telling them they are WRONG.
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enrico-sorichetti

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Joined: 14 Mar 2007
Posts: 10515
Location: italy

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply to: FILE versus DATASET
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IMO it is time to stop bickering about file VS. dataset/"data set" difference/"improper use"
The time the senior members spend on the forum could have a better use

[/quote]
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daveporcelan

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 7:34 pm    Post subject:
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That is what I am trying to say.

You know what the poster is talking about when they say File.

Just answer the question and move on.

Do get all over their case that 'technically' it should be the other word.
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