New Member


I need some help on transferring files from Alpha VMS to PC.

How to transfer index file from VMS to .txt format on PC?
Jan van den Ende
Honored Contributor

Re: VMS -->PC


Let me start with

WELCOME to the VMS Forum!

If you need to transfer an indexed file to any other OS, you WILL loose the indexes and their info. Period. NO way around it.
But if you transfer the file as_is, then that same info will make the file unsuited for anything but tranfer to another VMS (and even that is not trivial.

You CAN get the data over (and your desire for .txt format to me implies as much), then you first have to convert the indexed file to text (on VMS). Many ways to do that, but
one easy way is
After that, FTP (or your favorite file transfer program) --- IN TEXT MODE --- the text file to the PC.

(If you need some index structure at the PC site, you can use the info you get from
to build whatever you need to convert the transfered .txt file)



Have one on me.


Don't rust yours pelled jacker to fine doll missed aches.
Steven Schweda
Honored Contributor

Re: VMS -->PC

> I need some help [...]

I need some help to understand what you want.

Do you want to push the files from the VMS
system, or pull them from the PC (Windows?)

> [...] Alpha VMS [...] PC.

Not a very detailed description of anything.

tcpip show version

> [...] index file [...] on PC?

Do you mean a file where DIRE /FULL says,
"File organization: Indexed [...]"?

And do what with it when you get it there
(after you lose all the "indexed" structure)?
Honored Contributor

Re: VMS -->PC

New Member

Re: VMS -->PC

I need help to transfer index file from Alpha VMS to PC in .txt format, in purpose of a migration of files.

Honored Contributor

Re: VMS -->PC

Please read what I linked to.

That web page includes a section on transferring Indexed files, and a detailed introduction to the problem.

To summarize that web page information here, the indexed-format RMS file organization is not compatible with any Microsoft Windows software.

This fundamental file format incompatibility leaves you to scrounge up some tools that deal with the binary format on Windows (and get those to work), or to export the contents of the indexed file on the OpenVMS server out into a more portable format, and transfer that over.

You're basically asking for how to transfer a binary database file - think the innards of a typical database file - and have another system access it. There are very few databases that offer that, and RMS and its indexed file format is not among those databases.

No, I don't have pointers to any particular Windows tools that can read indexed file formats, nor would I follow that path. I would write a program to export the file to sequential (usually stream LF) and transfer that over.

There is full source code to a C callable library for accessing RMS files available in this package:


If this is not a case of a straight transfer, but of a distributed system, then the third option that's available here is serving the file format over to the Windows systems with one of the available JDBC/ODBC server implementations. (This too is mentioned on the page I linked to.) For further information on this particular topic, please see here: