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Support me on Patreon Buy me a book PayPal Ask me anything Version Downloads Get help on Codementor

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COBOL bridge for NodeJS which allows you to run COBOL code from NodeJS.

Can I use this on production?

Of course, you can! It's production ready! If you ever did such a thing, ping me (@IonicaBizau). 💥 💫


Currently GnuCOBOL is required. If you are using a debian-based distribution you can install it using:

$ sudo apt-get install gnucobol
# outdated systems: sudo apt-get install open-cobol

💡 It would be interesting to fallback into a COBOL compiler written in NodeJS. Contributions are welcome! 😄

Then, install the cobol package.

$ npm i cobol

📋 Example

// Dependencies
var Cobol = require("cobol");

// Execute some COBOL snippets
Cobol(function () {/*
                   PROGRAM-ID. HELLO.
                   ENVIRONMENT DIVISION.
                   DATA DIVISION.
                   PROCEDURE DIVISION.
                   DISPLAY "Hello world".
                   STOP RUN.
                   */}, {
                           free: true
                   }, function (err, data) {
    console.log(err || data);
// => "Hello World"

Cobol(__dirname + "/args.cbl", {
    args: ["Alice"]
}, function (err, data) {
    console.log(err || data);
// => "Your name is: Alice"

// This will read data from stdin
Cobol(function () {/*
                   PROGRAM-ID. APP.
                   ENVIRONMENT DIVISION.
                   INPUT-OUTPUT SECTION.
                   DATA DIVISION.
                   FILE SECTION.
                   FD SYSIN.
                   01 ln PIC X(64).
                   88 EOF VALUE HIGH-VALUES.
                   WORKING-STORAGE SECTION.
                   PROCEDURE DIVISION.
                   DISPLAY "Write something and then press the <Enter> key"
                   OPEN INPUT SYSIN
                   READ SYSIN
                   AT END SET EOF TO TRUE
                   PERFORM UNTIL EOF
                   DISPLAY "You wrote: ", ln
                   DISPLAY "------------"
                   READ SYSIN
                   AT END SET EOF TO TRUE
                   CLOSE SYSIN
                   STOP RUN.
                   */}, {
    stdin: process.stdin,
    stdout: process.stdout
}, function (err) {
    if (err) {
// => Write something and then press the <Enter> key
// <= Hi there!
// => You wrote: Hi there!
// => ------------

Get Help

There are few ways to get help:

  1. Please post questions on Stack Overflow. You can open issues with questions, as long you add a link to your Stack Overflow question.
  2. For bug reports and feature requests, open issues. 🐛
  3. For direct and quick help, you can use Codementor. 🚀

📝 Documentation

Cobol(input, options, callback)

Runs COBOL code from Node.JS side.


  • Function|String|Path input: A function containing a comment with inline COBOL code, the cobol code itself or a path to a COBOL file.
  • Object options: An object containing the following fields:
  • cwd (String): Where the COBOL code will run (by default in the current working directory)
  • args (Array): An array of strings to pass to the COBOL process.
  • compileargs (Object): Use to specificy cobc compiler options
  • stdin (Stream): An optional stdin stream used to pipe data to the stdin stream of the COBOL process.
  • stderr (Stream): An optional stderr stream used to pipe data to the stdin stream of the COBOL process.
  • stdeout (Stream): An optional stdout stream used to pipe data to the stdin stream of the COBOL process.
  • remove (Boolean): Should the compiled executable be removed after running, default is true.
  • precompiled (Boolean): Run the precompiled executable instead of re-compiling, default is false.
  • Function callback: The callback function called with err, stdout and stderr.

📰 Press Highlights

This project has become more popular than I expected. 😄 If you wrote or found an article about this project that is not in the list below, please add it.

😋 How to contribute

Have an idea? Found a bug? See how to contribute.

💖 Support my projects

I open-source almost everything I can, and I try to reply to everyone needing help using these projects. Obviously, this takes time. You can integrate and use these projects in your applications for free! You can even change the source code and redistribute (even resell it).

However, if you get some profit from this or just want to encourage me to continue creating stuff, there are few ways you can do it:

  • Starring and sharing the projects you like 🚀

  • Buy me a book—I love books! I will remember you after years if you buy me one. 😁 📖

  • PayPal—You can make one-time donations via PayPal. I'll probably buy a coffee tea. 🍵

  • Support me on Patreon—Set up a recurring monthly donation and you will get interesting news about what I'm doing (things that I don't share with everyone).

  • Bitcoin—You can send me bitcoins at this address (or scanning the code below): 1P9BRsmazNQcuyTxEqveUsnf5CERdq35V6

Thanks! ❤️

💫 Where is this library used?

If you are using this library in one of your projects, add it in this list.

  • cobol-promises

📜 License

MIT © Ionică Bizău