OS/400 on the AS/400 can write tapes in different formats. When creating a tape for conversion, you want to write a standard (mainframe like) format. The preferred format is IBM SL (standard label) FB (fixed block) with EBCDIC data files. If your files contain variable length records, you may want to write a tape in VB (variable block) format. You should not use SAVLIB or SAVOBJ to create a tape unless you are transferring the data to another AS/400 using our Tape-to-Tape Image Copy service.
To create an IBM SL FB tape, use CPYTOTAP and set the following as indicated:
Device type: (as appropriate)
Density (as appropriate)
Record format: F
Block attribute: B
Record length: (as appropriate)
Block length: (as appropriate)
This procedure will create a mainframe-like tape format. Try to create a block size that is close to, but not over, 32,760 bytes. All our technical notes about converting mainframe tapes to other platforms apply to an AS/400 tape created this way.
If, and only if, this data is going to another AS/400, you can write a backup tape in SAVOBJ format. Another AS/400 can read such a tape when converted to different media. For example, a SAVOBJ on a QIC cartridge tape can be transferred to a 3480 and read on another AS/400 with a 3480 drive.
For more articles on data conversion, see our TechTalk Index.
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