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Essential Concepts of Base SAS Software

Conceptual Information about Base SAS Software

SAS System Concepts

SAS system-wide concepts include the building blocks of SAS language: rules for words and names, variables, missing values, expressions, dates, times, and intervals, and each of the six SAS language elements -- data set options, formats, functions, informats, statements, and system options.

SAS system-wide concepts also include introductory information that helps you begin to use SAS, including information about the SAS log, SAS output, error processing, WHERE processing, and debugging. Information about SAS processing prepares you to write SAS programs. Information on how to optimize system performance as well as how to monitor performance.

DATA Step Concepts

Understanding essential DATA step concepts can help you construct DATA step programs effectively. These concepts include how SAS processes the DATA step, how to read raw data to create a SAS data set, and how to write a report with a DATA step.

More advanced concepts include how to combine and modify information once you have created a SAS data set, how to perform BY-group processing of your data, how to use array processing for more efficient programming, and how to create stored compiled DATA step programs.

SAS Files Concepts

SAS file concepts include advanced topics that are helpful for advanced applications, though not strictly necessary for writing simple SAS programs. These topics include the elements that comprise the physical file structure that SAS uses, including data libraries, data files, SAS views, catalogs, file protection, engines, and external files.

Advanced topics for data files include the audit trail, generation data sets, integrity constraints, indexes, and file compression. In addition, these topics include compatibility issues with earlier releases and how to process files across operating environments.

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