Designed, written and presented by Minerva Douglas, one of the UK's foremost IMS programming specialists, this course teaches the skills and techniques required to write programmes in both IMS/DB and IMS/TM (formerly IMS/DC) environments.
The course covers not only IMS database access, but also includes the programming components necessary for coding on-line programs.
The course contains several practical exercises that allow attendees to work through various programs and learn the most structured and efficient use of IMS database calls.

This course is also available 'On Demand' at the High Wycombe training centre, or for one-company, on-site presentations.


COBOL or PL/I programming experience and program edit and submission knowledge.

Delegates will learn how to

  • describe the basic components of IMS DB (DL/I) and IMS/TM
  • understand and use the terminology encountered in IMS environments
  • describe and explain the main facilities available in IMS DB
  • code and test a basic COBOL or PL/I program to access IMS databases
  • write a typical Message Processing Program
  • describe the differences in conversational programs
  • write and test a simple PSB
  • use BTS to test an MPP
  • recognise simple MFS statements.


Introduction to IMS/DB & IMS/TM

Hierarchical database versus conventional files; hierarchical database terminology; DB and DC comparison; IMS program execution; Batch Message Processing Program (BMP); IMS message scheduling; Logical Terminal Concept; IMS message types.

IMS Components

Data Base Description; Program Specification Block; Application Control Block.

IMS/DB Programming

IMS batch programming; DL/1 Call Statement; Segment Search Arguments; GU function; GN function; GNP function; ISRT function; REPL function; DLET function; efficiency considerations; positioning; multiple qualification; IMS DB status codes; program structure.

IMS/TM Programming

execution; message calls; IMS/DC status codes; alternate destinations; Program to Program messages; modifiable PCBs; express PCBs; conversational processing.

Command Codes

D Command Code; F Command Code; L Command Code; C Command Code; P Command Code; N Command Code; U Command Codes; V Command Code.

Database Access Methods

HSAM; HISAM; HDAM; HIDAM; non-Hierarchical Sequential Organisation; Secondary Indexing; Logical Relationships; Logical Structures.

Conversational Programs

The scratch pad area; conversational program structure.

Checkpoint & Recovery

Commit points; types of checkpoint; GSAM database; IMS DB recovery; IMS DB backout.

Batch Terminal Simulator (BTS)

BTS overview; ./T command statement; ./D command statement; ./O command statement; other BTS command statements.

Message Format Service (MFS)

MFS objectives; MFS message descriptor; MFS device format application programs & MFS; MFS control block chaining.