Summary of z/OS Unix System Services Shell Commands

The following table summarises all the z/OS Unix System Services  (USS) shell commands:

General Use
Command Description
at Run a command at a specified time
batch Run commands when the system is not busy
bpxmtext Display reason code text
ceebldtx Transform message source files into loadable message text files
clear Clear the screen of all previous output
command Run a simple command
confighfs Invoke vfs_pfsctl functions for HFS file systems
date Display the date and time
echo Write arguments to standard output
edcmtext Display errnojr reason code text
exec Run a command and open, close, or copy the file descriptors
man Print sections of the online reference manual
nice Run a command at a different priority
passwd Change user passwords and password phrases
print Return arguments from the shell
printf Write formatted output
sh Invoke a shell (command interpreter)
tcsh Invoke a tcsh shell
time Display processor and elapsed times for a command
uptime Report how long the system has been running
wall Broadcast a message to logged-in users
whence Tell how the shell interprets a command name
whoami Display your effective user name
xlc Compiler invocation using a customizable configuration file
xlC C++ compiler invocation using a customizable configuration file
xlc++ C++ compiler invocation using a customizable configuration file
Environment Control
Command Description
alias Display or create a command alias
asa Interpret ASA/Fortran carriage control
automount Configure the automount facility
cal Display a calendar for a month or year
calendar Display all current appointments
captoinfo Prints terminal entries in the termcap file
chcp Set or query ASCII/EBCDIC code pages for the terminal
configstk Configure the AF_UENT stack
env Display environments, or set an environment for a process
export Set the export attributes for variables, or show currently exported variables
fc Process a command history list
hash Create a tracked alias
history Process a command history list
id Return the user identity
infocmp Compare and print the terminal description
ipcrm Remove message queue, semaphore set, or shared memory identifiers
ipcs Report status of the interprocess communication facility
lm Start the login monitor for OCS support
locale Get locale-specific information
localedef Define the locale environment
logger Log messages
logname Return a user’s login name
newgrp Change to a new group
ocsconfig Configure, unconfigure, or query an OCS object
printenv Display the value of environment variables
r Process a command history list
readonly Mark a variable as read-only
return Return from a shell function or . (dot) script
script Makes a typescript of a terminal session
set Set or unset command options and positional parameters
shift Shift positional parameters
stty Set or display terminal options
su Change the user ID connected with a session
sysvar Display static system symbols
tic Compile term descriptions into terminfo database entries
touch Change the file access and modification times
tput Change characteristics of terminals
tso Run a TSO command from the shell
tsocmd Run a TSO/E command from the shell (including authorized commands)
tty Return the user’s terminal name
uconvdef Create binary conversion tables
unalias Remove alias definitions
uname Display the name of the current operating system
unset Unset values and attributes of variables and functions
who Display information about current users
Command Description
cron Run commands at specified dates and times
inetd Handle login requests
rlogind Validate rlogin requests
uupd Invoke uucico for TCP/IP connections from remote UUCP systems
Manage Directories
Command Description
basename Return the nondirectory components of a path name
cd Change the working directory
chgrp Change the group owner of a file or directory
chmod Change the mode of a group or directory
chown Change the owner or group of a file or directory
chroot Change the root directory for the execution of a command
dircmp Compare directories
dirname Return the directory components of a path name
ls List file and directory names and attributes
mkdir Make a directory
mount Logically mount a file system
mv Rename or move a file or directory
pathchk Check a path name
pwd Return the working directory name
rm Remove a directory entry
rmdir Remove a directory
unlink Removes a directory entry
Manage Files
Command Description
amblist Display formatted information from object and executable files
as Use the HLASM assembler to produce object files
cat Concatenate or display text files
chaudit Change audit flags for a file
chlabel Set the multilevel security label to files and directories
cksum Calculate and display checksums and byte counts
cmp Compare two files
col Remove reverse line feeds
comm Show and select or reject lines common to two files
compress Lempel-Ziv file compression
copytree Make a copy of a file hierarchy while preserving all file attributions
cp Copy a file
csplit Split text files
ctags Create tag files for ex, more, and vi
dot or . Run a shell file in the current environment
cut Cut out selected fields of each line of a file
dd Convert and copy a file
df Display the amount of free space in the file system
diff Compare two text files and show the differences
du Summarize usage of file space
ed Use the ed line-oriented text editor
egrep Search a file for a specified pattern
ex Use the ex text editor
exrecover daemon Retrieve vi and ex files
extattr Set, reset, or display extended attributes for files
expand Expand tabs to spaces
fgrep Search a file for a specified pattern
file Determine file type
filecache Manage file caches
find Find a file meeting specified criteria
fold Break lines into shorter lines
head Display the first part of a file
iconv Convert characters from one code set to another
join Join two sorted, textual relational databases
line Copy one line of standard input
link Create a hard link to a file
ln Create a link to a file
mkfifo Make a FIFO special file
mknod Make a FIFO or character special file
mount Logically mount a file system
more Display files on a page-by-page basis
mv Rename or move a file or directory
nl Number lines in a file
nm Display symbol table of object, library, and executable files
obrowse Browse a file
od Dump a file in a specified format
oedit Edit a file
pack Compress files by Huffman coding
paste Merge corresponding or subsequent lines of a file
patch Change a file using diff output
pcat Display Huffman-packed lines on standard output
pg Display files interactively
sed Start the sed noninteractive stream editor
sort Start the sort-merge utility
spell Detect spelling errors in files
split Split a file into manageable pieces
strings Display printable strings in binary files
sum Calculate and display checksums and block counts
tabs Set tab stops
tail Display the last part of a file
tee Duplicate the output stream
tr Translate characters
tsort Sort files topologically
umask Set or return the file mode creation mask
uncompress Undo Lempel-Zev compression of a file
unexpand Compress spaces into tabs
uniq Report or filter out repeated lines in a file
unmount Remove a file system from the file hierarchy
unpack Decode Huffman packed files
uudecode Decode a transmitted binary file
uuencode Encode a file for safe transmission
vi Use the display-oriented interactive text editor
wc Count newlines, words, and bytes
zcat Uncompress and display data
Print Files
Command Description
cancel Cancel print queue requests (stub command)
infocmp Compare and print the terminal description
lp Send a file to a printer
lpstat Show status of print queues (stub command)
pr Format a file in paginated form and send it to standard output
Command Description
bc Use the arbitrary-precision arithmetic calculation language
break Exit from a for, while, or until loop in a shell script
colon or : Do nothing, successfully
continue Skip to the next iteration of a loop in a shell script
dot or . Run a shell file in the current environment
eval Construct a command by concatenating arguments
exec Run a command and open, close, or copy the file descriptors
exit Return to the parent process from which the shell was called or to
expr Evaluate arguments as an expression
false Return a nonzero exit code
grep Search a file for a specified pattern
left bracket or [ Test for a condition
let Evaluate an arithmetic expression
test Test for a condition
trap Intercept abnormal conditions and interrupts
true Return a value of 0
Control Processes
Command Description
bg Move a job to the background
bpxtrace Activate or deactivate traces for processes
crontab daemon Schedule regular background jobs
fg Bring a job into the foreground
jobs Return the status of jobs in the current session
kill End a process or job, or send it a signal
nohup Start a process that is immune to hangups
ps Return the status of a process
renice Change priorities of a running process
sleep Suspend execution of a process for an interval of time
stop Suspend a process or job
submit Submit a batch job for background processing
suspend Send a SIGSTOP to the current shell
time Display processor and elapsed times for a command
times Get process and child process times
wait Wait for a child process to end
ulimit Set process limits
Shell Scripts
Command Description
autoload Indicate function name not defined
dspmsg Display selected messages from message catalogs
functions Display or assign attributes to functions
getconf Get configuration values
getopts Parse utility options
integer Mark each variable with an integer value
read Read a line from standard input
type Tell how the shell interprets a name
typeset Assign attributes and values to variables
xargs Construct an argument list and run a command
Develop or Port Application Programs
Command Description
ar Create or maintain library archives
awk Process programs written in the awk language
c89 Compile, link-edit, and assemble Standard C source code and create an executable file on z/OS
c++/cxx Compile, link-edit, and assemble C++ and Standard C source code and create an executable file on z/OS
cc Compile, link-edit, and assemble Common Usage C source code and create an executable file on z/OS
dbx Use the debugger
dbgld Create a module map for debugging
dspcat Display all or part of a message catalog
gencat Create or edit message catalogs
lex Generate a program for lexical tasks
make Maintain program-generated and interdependent files
mkcatdefs Preprocess a message source file
runcat Pipe output from mkcatdefs to gencat
strip Remove unnecessary information from an executable file
yacc Use the yacc compiler
Communicate With Users or Systems
Command Description
mail Read and send mail messages
mailx Send or receive electronic mail
mesg Allow or refuse messages
talk Talk to another user
write Write to another user
Command Description
ar Create or maintain library archives
cpio Copy in/out file archives
pax Interchange portable archives
tar Manipulate the tar archive files to copy or back up a file
Command Description
uucc Compile UUCP configuration files
uucico daemon Process UUCP file transfer requests
uucp Copy files between remote UUCP systems
uucpd Invoke uucico for TCP/IP connections from remote UUCP systems
uulog Display log information about UUCP events
uuname Display list of remote UUCP systems
uupick Manage files sent by uuto and uucp
uustat Display status of pending UUCP transfers
uuto Copy files to users on remote UUCP systems
uux Request command execution on remote UUCP systems
uuxqt daemon Carry out command requests from remote UUCP systems



  1. Hello Rui,

    it is Katja again 🙂

    I work on Z/OS but I do not know how/where to run the commands identified on your table as “General Use”. Are these commands just able to be run on Z/OS with an integrated Unix plataform/Emulator?

  2. Hi Katja,

    Happy New Year!! 🙂

    You can run Unix commands under OMVS (do a TSO OMVS to access USS) or via batch.

    Mind you though, that in order to be able to do this, your userid needs to have an OMVS segment.

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