Currently GnuCOBOL uses Berkeley DB for INDEXED SEQUENTIAL file access (essentially a persistent key-value store). However, versions after 1.85 (which is buggy) have copyleft licenses that prohibit them from being used in distributed proprietary programs.

Older simple, non-relational DBMSs exist, but data size limits make them unusable. SQLite is overkill for this, being a full SQL RDBMS.

Does anyone know of a library that would meet the needs of GnuCOBOL? If not, one probably needs to be written.

  • "data size limits": Please be more explicit: What should be the minimum capacity of the store? (number of keys, size of values, etc) – Nicolas Raoul Mar 28 '17 at 3:24

Library to use in this case: VB-ISAM. Make sure to use a 2.x version.

VB-ISAM is licensed under LGPL 2.1+

Build it from source and install the library, afterwards you can configure GnuCOBOL to use it by rebuilding libcob: configure --with-vbisam and updating the system with the new one. There's no need to recompile any module already compiled with cobc.

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