IBM CICS Interview Questions and Answers

Mainframe CICS Questions Answers. 

CICS Technical Interview Question and Answers.

Explain what CICS stands for? Describe its importance
Answer : CICS is the abbreviated form of Customer Information Control System. It is a is a family of application and transaction servers running in IBM Mainframes. It supports high-volume online transaction processing and management. Over 90 percent of the Fortune 500 companies, and almost all financial institutions like banks and insurance companies use CICS. CICS processes an average of 35 billion transactions per day for different organizations

What do we do by using CICS?
Answer : CICS is normally used for Real-time or Online processing when that particular processing cannot wait for batch processing normally done at the end of the day for most installations.

Explain what is a transaction id or code in CICS?

Answer : In CICS, a transaction is mostly a four letter unique predefined unit of work, a terminal work will use to invoke a specific map and the associated program.

What do you mean by PCT and how it is used?

Answer : A PCT is the abbreviated name for Program Control Table, which contains the trans-id and the associated program which will be invoked when the trans-id is used.

What is SNT in CICS Processing?
Answer : SNT contains the names of all valid users of the system.

Explain what is a PPT and how it is used in CICS?

Answer : A PPT contains a valid list of program names and it also indicates the storage address if the program has already been loaded. CICS uses PPT to determine whether it will load a new copy of the program if the program is invoked or not.

Explain in brief the usage of DFHCOMMAREA and where it is located?

Answer : It helps to transfer data between two transactions and it is located in the LINKAGE SECTION.

What are CEMT and CSMT functions? What does these transactions do for you?

Answer : These are normally supervisory functions, where they can be used to cancel tasks running at a different terminals. CSMT is used to update PPT. But I never had much chance to use them.

Which is the transaction that you use to debug a CICS Program?

Answer : To debug a CICS program we use CEDF, which means CICS Execution Diagnostic facility.

Explain the usage of the command XCTL and LINK in brief? 

Answer : XCTL command transfers control to another program without setting up a return mechanism whereas the LINK command transfers control to next logical lower level with a return mechanism


What is the use of the command EXEC CICS HANDLE?
Answer : EXEC CICS HANDLE is used to specify what action the program needs to take when certain exceptional conditions occur.

What is the use of the command EXEC CICS RETURN ?

Answer : EXEC CICS RETURN is used simply to return control to CICS with no option and the terminal session ends.

Which parameters will you use to code a SEND MAP command in CICS?

  • SEND MAP(name of the map)
  • MAPSET(name of the mapset which contains the specific map)
  • FROM(specifies the symbolic map)
  • MAPONLY(specifies dataonly needs to be sent)
  • DATAONLY(specifies that only data from the symbolic map needs to be sent)
  • ERASE/ERASEUP
  • CURSOR
Explain in brief how do you obtain the storage dump from CICS?
Answer : CICS automatically adds the storage dump to a special file called dump data set. When the CICS is terminated, the dumps are automatically printed. The DSN can be found from the respective installation personnel.

What do the following entities 
EIBAID, EIBTRMID and EIBCALEN  represent?
Answer : EIBAID It is an one character field that indicates which attention key was used for the last RECEIVE command.
EIBTRMID This field supplies the name of the terminal running the task.
EIBCALEN This field represents the length of the communication area passed to my program. If no commarea is passed, it is set to zero.

How can you logoff from a CICS transaction?

Answer : To logoff from a CICS transaction , you need to Blank the screen, then type CSSF LOGOFF.

Explain the most important steps for a CICS program development?

  • Get the complete specification
  • Get the related subprograms and sourcebooks
  • Design the CICS program
  • Update the CICS Tables
  • Code and compile the map definition.
  • Code the program.
  • Compile the program.
  • Test the CICS program.
During CICS development, do you compile the map or program first?
Answer : The map needs to be compiled first an then program.
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