p (Pattern Match) Processing Code

The p processing code tests a value and determines if it matches a predetermined pattern matchstring composed of alphabetic, numeric, or literal characters.

System Processors


Code Type

File Defining

Dictionary Attributes

Input Conversion





Pattern of literal characters and codes (below) that must exactly match the data. A pattern mask is one of these characters (n, a, or x) preceded by a number to indicate the number of characters for that value. The mask must be enclosed in parentheses. There may be more than one pattern code, separated by semicolons. As long as the value matches at least one of the pattern codes, the test is a success.


Test for m numeric characters (0-9). The characters + - , . are not considered numeric here.


Test for m alphabetic characters (A-Z and a-z).


Test for any m characters except spaces.


Test to match a literal string. If this is used in combination with the patterns above, enclose the string in double quotes. If m is zero, the system tests for all characters to match the specified type.


The p processing code may be used as an output-conversion (attribute 7) or input-conversion (attribute 14). As an input-conversion, the p code verifies input. Multiple pattern matchstrings must be separated by semicolons.

In all of the above cases that support a number, the exact number must be met or found to accept the data. Zero as the number allows for any number, including 0, to be accepted.

Multiple matchstring parameters will accept the data if any of the matchstrings are met. If the data matches the pattern exactly, the data is returned. If the data does not match, null is returned.

See Also

Input-Conversion Processing Codes, match Relational Operator, Processing Codes Overview, u0070 User Exit