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Course Catalog » Utilities Curriculum

Introduction to VSAM

7 hours



This course provides the learner with a basic understanding of the VSAM access method and VSAM datasets on z/OS. It introduces what VSAM is and when it is used. It includes information on the different VSAM dataset types, when each is used, and their internal structure. Information on creating, copying, deleting, and managing VSAM datasets using JCL, TSO/E commands, the IDCAMS batch utility, and other tools is also covered. Finally, other products used to manage VSAM datasets are introduced - both from IBM and other vendors.


This course is oriented to Application Programmers, Systems Programmers and operations staff. However anyone needing to understand VSAM datasets will benefit from this course.


Completion of the following Datatrain courses:

  • Introduction to the IBM Enterprise environment

or equivalent knowledge.


After completing this course the student should be able to:

  • Describe what VSAM is
  • Explain the structure of VSAM datasets
  • Identify the role of VSAM indexes, and their structure
  • Create a VSAM dataset using JCL or IDCAMS
  • Understand the options available when creating a VSAM dataset
  • Create and manage Alternate Indexes
  • Delete VSAM datasets
  • Alter VSAM datasets
  • List VSAM data set information using IDCAMS LISTCAT
  • Read and understand IDCAMS LISTCAT output
  • Print VSAM datasets
  • Copy a VSAM dataset to another VSAM dataset
  • Copy between a VSAM and a sequential dataset
  • Backup a VSAM dataset
  • Restore a VSAM dataset

Course Content

VSAM Basics

What is VSAM

VSAM Datasets

VSAM Indexes

Creating VSAM Data Sets

Creating VSAM Datasets


JCL advantages and disadvantages

JCL DD keywords for VSAM

Alternate Indexes, ALTER, and DELETE

Alternate Indexes

Deleting VSAM Datatsets

Altering VSAM Datasets


The LISTCAT Command

Reading LISTCAT Output

Printing VSAM Datasets

Copying VSAM Data Sets

REPRO Command

EXPORT and INPUT Command

Copying VSAM Data

Introduction to VSAM Mastery Test

Course Catalog » Utilities Curriculum
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