\sˈuːpə zˈap], \sˈuːpə zˈap], \s_ˈuː_p_ə z_ˈa_p]\
Definitions of SUPERZAP
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An IBM utility program used to quickly patchoperating system or application program executable codein preference to editing the source code and recompiling.The SuperZAP program was a quick hack written by one IBMEngineer, possibly from IBM UK, in the late 1960s to directlyfix executable files. He needed to fix a bug but it wouldhave taken hours to rebuild the vast OS/360 executables.The S/360 architecture has an instruction ZAP (Zero and AddPacked) for packed decmial arithmetic, that sets the byte ata given address to a given value. Superzap used this to writedata given as a string of hex digits to a given location in anexecutable file in a matter of seconds.Soon the IBM development labs were releasing all ProgrammingTemporary Fixes (PTFs) to OS/360 in this form. OS/360included a version called IMASPZAP or AMASPZAP which persistedthrough MVS, MVS/SP, MVS/XA, OS/390 and probably stillremains in z/OS, the distant descendent of OS/360.[Private 2004-02-05 e-mail from Chris Gage, IBM employee andSuperZap user, 1970-].
By Denis Howe
Word of the day
Dorsal Root Ganglia
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