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The Question is:

Is there a way to convert a Cobol created text files to HTML?  The report
columns do not line up when mailed(VMS MAIL) to an exchange mail box.

The Answer is :

  As to HTML, prefix the file with [HTML][PRE] and append [/PRE][/HTML].
  This will result in a file that can be used as a web page -- note that
  the square brackets are used to permit display here on a webpage, and
  should be converted to angle brackets in the real DCL CGI script.
  Alternatively, generate a standard context-tag, a blank line, and then
  the above sequence, and use the COBOL program as a CGI application.
  The OpenVMS Wizard is not entirely certain what the the "columns do not
  line up when mailed" means -- the OpenVMS Wizard will assume this is a
  case of the text formating being changed when transitioning through or
  into the Microsoft Exchange gateway, and probably due to the particulars
  of the local Exchange gateway.  Gateways into and out of the Microsoft
  Exchange environment can quite easily be configured to "damage" the
  formatting expected with various SMTP-based email transfers.
  Also, on OpenVMS Alpha, compile your COBOL program with COBOL/NOVFC to
  produce LINAGE or REPORT WRITER files suitable for use as standard text
  files -- this disables the variable-with-fixed-control RMS setting.
  Also, ensure that people who try to view standard text file reports
  using a Microsoft Exchange client switch to a fixed space font so that
  the reports are not altered by any proportional spacing settings.

answer written or last revised on ( 5-JAN-2001 )

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