AS400 Forms

Lynn Harris
Lynn Harris used Ask the Experts™

Help! We currently have a number of forms which have been happily rolling along for years on a very old machine. I have been tasked with identifying them and when they where last used.  I have no clue. These are forms which where developed 20 years ago and have not be modified in at least 10 years.  

Links/info/any is greatly appreciated.

Thank You!
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Hi Lynn,

I'm not the AS400 expert around here, so we'll await one of them to pop in.

In the meantime, do you know what tool/package/product was used to create and/or maintain the forms?  There are several of them out there and it could be any of them.

Gary PattersonVP Technology / Senior Consultant

Lynn, what exactly do you mean by forms?  

Are we talking about AFP overlays?  Those are a type of AS/400 object that gets merged at runtime with variable text generated by a program to allow printing of forms on plan paper without having to handle all the details of drawing lines in your program.  

As Kent mentioned, there are also lots of form creation tools - like TL Ashford Barcode/400, just to pick a common one that has been around a long time that are used to create and produce forms.  There are also plenty of non-IBM AS/400 tools that are often used to download data from the AS/400 (or other systems) and produce complex forms.


Hi (and thank you both),

Sorry I should have included that!  These forms are from office vision.  We still have an old machine and only run office vision/email on it. We have got approval to move off it (yes!!!) but I need to identify all forms and am not sure how.
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Wow.  That is old!  :)

You probably want to investigate the QDLS (Document Library Services File System).  It should contain the creation data and last access date for the forms.


No luck with QDLS.

We have a QDOC but it contain all the documents in every document on the system.
VP Technology / Senior Consultant
Just ran into another shop still using OfficeVision/400 recently.

OfficeVision/400 has a "mail merge" type facility that can be used to produce forms output, for example using a specially formatted OV/400 document and the PRTDOC CL command.

I've attached a link to an old document that was produced when IBM was trying to get OV/400 users to move to Lotus Domino (!).  You can ignore the Domino stuff, but it has a nice overview of how all the OV/400 stuff works, along with they key commands involved.

In general, these documents are stored in the QDOC file system, which was a PC-style hierarchical file system for storing stream files.  You can access QDOC using WRKFLR and WRKDOC commands.  Scan your source code for the PRTDOC command, the FILLFORM command

- Gary


Excellent.  A place to start.

Thank You!!

Great job, Gary.

The redbook links that I had to OfficeVision were broken.  :(
Gary PattersonVP Technology / Senior Consultant

Yeah, not sure why, but the top-level link to that on the Redbooks site has been removed.  I've got a copy of the file I could post, but I searched for the title and found a working link to the PDF.  Whenever something like that happens, I just make a copy of the document, just in case!

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