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Status Future consideration
Workspace IBM i
Categories Languages - RPG
Created by Guest
Created on Aug 16, 2017

RPG - New BIF for comparing data structures

Based on this discussion:

Would like a BIF to compare corresponding fields in data structures. This would be a field-by-field comparison.

Use Case:

if %compcorr( myDS1 : myDS2 );
// Do something if data structure corresponding fields match
// Do something if comparison fails

Idea priority Medium
  • Guest
    Mar 22, 2021

    I made a suggestion about using %KDS() for comparisation but it was declined.
    IBM referred to this RFE instead and it might be an idea.
    Especially if a parameter for number of fields used for comparing is added.

    For example
    %compcorr( myKeyDS1 : myKeyDS2 : 3 );
    Compare the first 3 fields in the data structure.

  • Guest
    Apr 17, 2020

    IBM will use this request as input to planning but no commitment is made or implied. This request will be updated in the future if IBM implements it. IBM will use votes and comments from others in the community to help prioritize this request.

  • Guest
    Mar 27, 2018

    The CAAC has reviewed this requirement and recommends that IBM view this as a low/medium priority feature. Actually, it would be very convenient when needed in the right situations, and would reduce the amount of code.

    Background: The COMMON Americas Advisory Council (CAAC) members have a broad range of experience in working with small and medium-sized IBM i customers. CAAC has a key role in working with IBM i development to help assess the value and impact of individual RFEs on the broader IBM i community, and has therefore reviewed your RFE.

    For more information about CAAC, see

    For more details about CAAC's role with RFEs, see

    Nancy Uthke-Schmucki - CAAC Program Manager

  • Guest
    Aug 25, 2017

    IBM has received the requirement and is evaluating it. IBM will provide a response after evaluation is complete.

  • Guest
    Aug 18, 2017

    One issue is with varying length fields. Say you have a VARCHAR(10), and its current value is 'abc'. The first two bytes have the value 3, and the next 3 bytes have the value 'abc'. The remaining 7 bytes can have any value, and it doesn't affect the meaning of the varying length. Say that varying length field in the first data structure has the value (3)abcdefghij and in the second data structure it has the value (3)abc1234567. The two varying length fields are equal, but the data structures will compare as unequal.

    Another possibly more important issue is with null-capable subfields. The EVAL-CORR opcode doesn't only assign the subfield values, it also assigns the null indicators for any null-capable subfields. A compare-corresponding built-in function would do the same.

  • Guest
    Aug 17, 2017

    Don't we already have this function with a normal if statement?

    If ( MyDS1 = MyDS2 )
    Do something on equal condition
    Do something else on not equal condition

    I'm fully in favor of enriching the language however I don't see how the community gains from this one. Can you elaborate on what functionality would be gained?