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Status Future consideration
Workspace IBM i
Created by Guest
Created on Feb 19, 2021


The C runtime regcomp/regexec functions are from last century and do not support anything introduced in regex since 1997. The SQL Function REGEXP_LIKE however does support contemporary features of regex, such as Word boundary that are lacking from the C runtime. Expose the actual runtime interface used by REGEXP_LIKE (which is a service program already on the system) to end-users (i.e., programmers) as an API that can be evoked as a bound call so that we can finally have regular expression support on IBM i that wasn't built when OS/400 had recently replaced CPF.

Use Case:

Native development for IBM i is still a desirable thing, right? While requests for C and C++ compilers with specs from the last 20 years have fallen on deaf ears at IBM, how about at least providing access to interfaces you already ship? Just harden it up and expose it as an API.

Idea priority High
  • Guest
    Oct 27, 2021


    Strange that we don't see this comment in the opposite direction... instead of writing all those SQL functions one could answer that there are other ways to accomplish this as you could write all of them in plain RPG with some API's.

    However if the question is to provide a REAL programming interface one gets the answer that we should look at SQL ???

  • Guest
    Oct 26, 2021

    The CAAC has reviewed this requirement and recommends that IBM view this as a “nice to have” low priority feature. There are other ways to accomplish this, so this one is not needed immediately. SQL services can be called from C and C++.

    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

    Nancy Uthke-Schmucki - CAAC Program Manager

    1 reply
  • Guest
    Mar 12, 2021

    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
    Feb 21, 2021

    RANT MODE ON (to IBM !)

    Unfortunately IBM is too busy exposing existing functionality as SQL functions (however this is the same in the other direction).

    I hope IBM will refocus itself and invest efforts/time into providing NEW features instead of repacking them.

    API's should be the primary source for functionality as from there on a developer can write all the rest himself.