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SAS File Features

Migration

SAS File Features Not Supported in Previous Releases: Details

For more information about any of these file features, see the Base SAS documentation. Many of these new file features can result in the following error message under an earlier SAS release:

   ERROR: File MYLIB.TABLENAME.DATA not compatible with this SAS version.
ENCRYPT=AES data set encryption
If you specify ENCRYPT=AES to encrypt a data set, the data set cannot be accessed by any release prior to SAS 9.4. For more information, see SAS Data Set Options: Reference.

Extended attributes
If you add extended attributes to a data set or to a variable in a data set, the data set cannot be accessed by any release prior to SAS 9.4. For more information about extended attributes, see SAS Language Reference: Concepts.

Metadata-bound libraries
Metadata-bound data sets cannot be accessed by any release prior to the second maintenance release of SAS 9.3. For more information about metadata-bound libraries, see SAS Language Reference: Concepts.

Data sets created with EXTENDOBSCOUNTER=YES
In SAS 9.4, extended observation count is the default. In SAS 9.3 it is optional. If a data set has EXTENDOBSCOUNTER=YES, then it is not accessible by any release prior to SAS 9.3.

The behavior depends on your operating environment:

  • In SAS 9.4 and later, under UNIX environments, by default the EXTENDOBSCOUNTER= option is not set. The extended observation count feature is not necessary under 64-bit UNIX. However, if you specify the OUTREP= option, and the data representation is not a 64-bit UNIX operating environment, then SAS automatically sets EXTENDOBSCOUNTER=YES. SAS adds the extended observation count feature for compatibility with non-UNIX environments where it might be necessary.
  • In SAS 9.4 and later, under Windows and z/OS, by default EXTENDOBSCOUNTER=YES. Files are created with the enhanced file format and the extended observation count attribute.
For more information, see the topics about observation count in SAS Language Reference: Concepts.
Best practice

Set the system option EXTENDOBSCOUNTER=NO for compatibility with releases prior to SAS 9.3.


Extended naming for data sets, views, and item stores
is supported in SAS 9.3 and later. For more information, see the chapter about rules for SAS data set names, view names, and item store names in SAS Language Reference: Concepts.
Best practice

Set the system option VALIDMEMNAME=COMPATIBLE to enforce naming that is compatible with releases prior to SAS 9.3. Messages are printed in the log when names cannot be transcoded.


CHECK integrity constraints
If you add the constraint to an existing SAS data set or create a SAS data set that includes the constraint, the data set cannot be accessed by any release prior to SAS 9.2.

sas003 encoding method
If you use the PWENCODE procedure to encode a password with the sas003 encoding method, the data set cannot be accessed by any release prior to SAS 9.2.

Linguistic collation with the SORT procedure
When you use SORTSEQ=LINGUISTIC with PROC SORT in SAS 9.2 and later, metadata is stored in the data set header to indicate that the data set was sorted. Previous releases do not support linguistic collation. If you use the sorted data set in previous releases, the data set is not shown to be sorted, and the COMPARE procedure might show differences due to the sort assertion. The data set can be accessed.

Greater than 32,767 variables
is supported in SAS 9.1 and later.

Suppressed transcoding of a specified variable
is supported in SAS 9.1 and later.

Long names for formats and informats
is supported in SAS 9.0 and later.
Best practice

Set VALIDFMTNAME=FAIL to get an error message for names that exceed the limit. If you specify the V7 or V8 engine, such as in a LIBNAME statement, SAS automatically uses the VALIDFMTNAME=FAIL behavior. Under SAS 6, use of long format names automatically causes a failure.


Encoding attribute
is not supported in SAS 6. SAS 7 and 8 data sets must be updated or output in a SAS 9 session to be stamped with an encoding attribute. (The encoding attribute was supported prior to SAS 9 in China, Korea, and Japan.)

The encoding attribute enables you to, for example, more easily process multilingual data in a single SAS session with the UTF8 session encoding. See the topic about National Language Support (NLS).

Long names for variables
are not supported in SAS 6.
Best practice

Set OPTIONS VALIDVARNAME=V6 to get an error message.