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OpenVMS upward-compatibility? (upgrades)

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The Question is:

We have system running on Open VMS Version 5.4. We would like to upgrade to
5.5-2. We would like to know that will the upgrade affect COBOL programs or
DCL procedure files? Is there any serious steps or precaution to be taken
before upgrading? We are usin
g this server as development server. So after developing we migrate the
programs to other servers which are running in V5.5-2. So does it have any
impact on our applications ?
Really appreciate if you can reply asap... And we are relatively new to
Thanks in advance.

The Answer is :

  The Wizard would expect your COBOL and DCL to execute without change.
  OpenVMS user-mode code using documented interfaces is expected to be
  entirely upward-compatible.  The OpenVMS VAX regression test suite
  includes a test that runs an executable image that was linked on
  VAX/VMS V1.0 -- upward compatibility of software is one of the central
  tenants of OpenVMS.
  Privileged-mode code -- executive- or kernel-mode code -- can require
  recompilation and relinking and sometimes some changes, particularly
  when upgrading over a major version.  (V5.5 is not a major version,
  though V6.0 is considered one.) This includes device drivers and similar
  kernel-mode code.
  In addition to expecting your COBOL and DCL to execute without change,
  the Wizard would expect your COBOL code would execute without requiring
  either recompilation or relinking.  (DCL is an interpreted language,
  therefore there is no recompilation or relinking involved.)
  The Wizard expects a few implications around hardware support, as the
  support for a then-common Q-bus Ethernet controller -- the DEQNA -- was
  removed at V5.5.  The DELQA is the replacement Ethernet controller, and
  the hardware interface is entirely compatible with the DEQNA.  Without
  knowing the specific system(s) involved, the Wizard cannot say if your
  configuration has a DEQNA.
  The Wizard would strongly encourage you to read the New Features and the
  Release notes for V5.5 and V5.5-2, to determine if there are any specific
  implications of this upgrade for your particular environment.
  Please see topics (3761), (5192), and (6829).
  Related topics include (173), (866), (1052), (1171), (1904), (2738),
  (2932), (4336), and (6049).

answer written or last revised on ( 11-OCT-2001 )

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