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The BUILD Procedure

PROC BUILD Statement

Starts the BUILD procedure and specifies the catalog or catalog entry to open.
Tip: When you specify a four-level name for the CATALOG= argument, a BUILD procedure window opens in which you can edit the specified entry. By default, when you close the BUILD window, the procedure opens an Explorer window showing the contents of the catalog that contains the specified entry. If you want the procedure to end when you close the BUILD window, use the NODIR option in the PROC BUILD statement.



You can use the following options in the PROC BUILD statement:


executes the BUILD procedure in batch mode rather than interactively. You cannot build individual entries in batch mode, but it is a convenient way to execute PRINT, COMPILE, MERGE, MLINK, and SYNC statements when you do not need to view the catalog or catalog entry. If you use the BATCH option without a PRINT, COMPILE, MERGE, MLINK, or SYNC statement, the specified catalog or catalog entry is not opened.

Note:   When you use the BATCH option, all of the other PROC BUILD options except for CATALOG= are ignored.  [cautionend]


opens the specified catalog entry for browsing only. By default, the BUILD procedure tries to open the specified catalog entry for editing. Use the BROWSE option if you only want to view the entry without making changes.

Note:   Catalog entries for which you have read-only access are automatically opened for browsing.  [cautionend]


specifies the current catalog or the specific catalog entry to create, edit, or browse. The name that you specify with this argument is interpreted as follows:

  • A one-level name identifies a catalog in the default library, WORK.

  • A two-level name identifies a catalog in a specified library.

  • A three-level name also identifies a catalog in a specified library. The third level is ignored and the first two levels (libref.catalog-name) are used.

  • A four-level name identifies an entry of a specified type in a specified catalog.

Unless you also use the BATCH option, the procedure opens a window.
  • If you supply a one-, two-, or three-level name, an Explorer window opens to display the contents of the specified catalog.

  • If you specify a four-level name, the appropriate window opens for the specified entry type. See BUILD Procedure Windows for information about the corresponding window for each entry type. Refer to SAS/AF Catalog Entry Types for information about the uses of the different catalog entry types. If the specified entry does not already exist, a new entry of the specified type is created.

If you omit the CATALOG= argument, a SAS Explorer window opens from which you can select a library and catalog and then create a new entry or select an existing entry to edit or browse.


specifies the default catalog entry type for the EDIT and BROWSE commands in BUILD procedure windows. The initial default entry type is PROGRAM. Use the ENTRYTYPE= option to change the default entry type to CBT, FRAME, HELP, MENU, or SCL.


prevents the Explorer window from opening when a specified catalog entry is closed. By default, the Explorer window opens with the contents of the current catalog displayed when you close the BUILD procedure window. This makes it easy to continue working in the same catalog. Use the NODIR option to prevent this default behavior, in which case the BUILD procedure ends when you close the BUILD procedure window for the entry.

Note:   The NODIR option is valid only when you specify a four-level name in the CATALOG= argument.  [cautionend]


specifies the default pad character that is displayed for empty user fields in PROGRAM entry windows. By default, the pad character is the underscore (_). Use the PADCHAR= option to specify a different default pad character for the BUILD session.

Note:   The pad character for individual fields can be specified in the ATTR window.  [cautionend]


specifies the RESOURCE entry that is associated with all FRAME entries during the current build session, and also after the current session closes. The resource name is saved in the SAS Registry in the key named Resource under Products\AF\Design Time\Frame. All FRAME entries use the value of this key to specify their default RESOURCE.

The resource-name value must be the name of an existing RESOURCE entry. If you omit the libref.catalog-name value, the procedure looks for the specified RESOURCE entry in the current catalog, which is identified in the CATALOG= option.

To return the Resource key back to its original value, you can use the RESOURCE command, the RESOURCE= option, or the REGEDIT command.


executes the specified CBT, FRAME, HELP, MENU, PROGRAM, or SCL entry in a test environment. You can test features such as field validation, the appearance of windows, and flow of control. Statements within submit blocks in PROGRAM entries are not submitted to the SAS session for processing. When you close the entry in the test environment, the Explorer window opens unless you also use the NODIR option.

Note:   The TESTAF option is valid only when you specify a four-level name in the CATALOG= argument.  [cautionend]

The DEBUG option activates the SAS Component Language source-level debugger, provided that the SCL program in the specified entry was previously compiled with the DEBUG compile option.


specifies the length of the text line in the DISPLAY window for catalog entry types that use the SAS text editor (CBT, HELP, MENU, and PROGRAM). The default value is 78. Use the TEXTLENGTH= option to specify a shorter or longer line length. Valid values for n are 1 through 255.

This option is especially useful when you are developing applications that will be used on displays that are wider than the one on which they are being created.

Using the PROC BUILD Statement

The BUILD procedure enables you to create, edit, and manage SAS/AF catalogs and catalog entries. The types of entries you can build depend on your display environment.

Refer to SAS/AF Catalog Entry Types for more information about the different types of catalog entries you can create and edit with the BUILD procedure.

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