Steps to Upgrading Your Application

The following steps describe an example process of importing your existing source files into Visual Studio:

  • If your application consists of a large number of files, consider starting by creating a project solely for the source files you are working on.
  • You can add any non-COBOL files (such as data files, HTML pages) to your projects. This enables you to edit and build them inside the IDE. However, if there are a lot of them, Micro Focus recommends you only add the files that are frequently used in your project.
  1. Create a number of folders on your machine to store your application's files.

    Micro Focus recommends that you create a logical folder structure where individual folders store the files as follows:

    • shared copybooks
    • logical components
    • binaries
    • data files
  2. Start the process of creating a solution and projects:
    1. In Visual Studio, click File > New > Project.
    2. In the New Project dialog box, expand Installed > COBOL.
  3. Select a project application type from the available categories - such as Console, Windows Forms, Mainframe Subsystem, Windows Service, etc.
  4. In the project's properties (click Project > projectname Properties) specify relative paths for the following:
    • Any source files
    • Copybooks - go to the Copybooks page in the properties
    • References
    • Build output - specify in Output path on the COBOL page in the properties
  5. Add your source files to the project. Right-click the project in Solution Explorer and click Add > Existing Item.

    By default, this is set to copy the files into the project folder.

    To use the files from their current location, specify Add as Link in the Add Existing item dialog. This might be useful if the source files will be shared with other applications.

    The files are added to the project with relative paths. They are not in a subfolder of the project and are not easy to move.

    Note: By default, adding existing files to your projects starts a scan inside the IDE to determine and set any required Compiler directives on them. The feature:
    • Applies to native multi-output projects only.
    • Is most useful with Mainframe Subsystem applications which need a COBOL dialect and CICSECM settings specified.
    • Sets any required Compiler directives on the individual files and not in the project's properties.

    This feature can have a significant performance impact when working with a large code base. If you do not need it, Micro Focus recommends that you disable it to help improve the performance.