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SAS Engines

Specifying an Engine

Usually you do not have to specify an engine. If you do not specify an engine, SAS automatically assigns one based on the contents of the SAS library.

However, even though SAS will automatically assign an engine based on the library contents, it is more efficient for you to specify the engine. In some operating environments, in order to determine the contents of a library, SAS must perform extra processing steps by looking at all of the files in the directory until it has enough information to determine which engine to use.

For example, if you explicitly specify the engine name as in the following LIBNAME statement, SAS does not need to determine which engine to use:

libname mylib v9 'SAS-library';

In order to use some engines, you must specify the engine name. For example, in order to use engines like the XML engine or the metadata engine, you must explicitly specify the engine name and specify specific arguments and options for that engine. For example, the following LIBNAME statement specifies the XML engine in order to import or export an XML document:

libname myxml xml 'c:\Myfiles\XML\Myxmlfile.xml' xmltype=generic;

You can specify an engine name in the LIBNAME statement, the ENGINE= system option, and in the New Library window.

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