The major language elements of Base SAS software are as
data set options
formats and informats
functions and CALL routines
Application Response Measurement (ARM) macros
SAS system options
For detailed information on each language element, see SAS Language Reference: Dictionary .
Data set options specify actions that apply only to the SAS data set with which they appear. They enable you to perform operations such as these:
selecting only the first or last n observations for processing
dropping variables from processing or from the output data set
specifying a password for a data set.
Specify a data set option in parentheses after a SAS data set
( option-1 = value-1 <... option-n = value-n >)
These examples show data set options in SAS statements:
data scores(keep=team game1 game2 game3); proc print data=new(drop=year); set old(rename=(date=Start_Date));
Most SAS data set options can apply to either input or output SAS data sets in DATA steps or procedure (PROC) steps. If a data set option is associated with an input data set, the action applies to the data set that is being read. If the option appears in the DATA statement or after an output data set specification in a PROC step, SAS applies the action to the output data set. In the DATA step, data set options for output data sets must appear in the DATA statement, not in any OUTPUT statements that might be present.
Some data set options, such as COMPRESS=, are meaningful only when you create a SAS data set because they set attributes that exist for the life of the data set. To change or cancel most data set options, you must re-create the data set. You can change other options (such as PW= and LABEL=) with PROC DATASETS. For more information, see 'The DATASETS Procedure' in Base SAS Procedures Guide .
When data set options appear on both input and output data sets in the same DATA or PROC step, SAS applies data set options to input data sets before it
In some instances, data set options conflict when they are used in the same statement. For example, you cannot specify both the DROP= and KEEP= options for the same variable in the same statement. Timing can also be an issue in some cases. For example, if using KEEP= and RENAME= on a data set specified in the SET statement, KEEP= needs to use the original variable names, because SAS will process KEEP= before the data set is read. The new names specified in RENAME= will apply to the programming statements that follow the SET statement.
Many system options and data set options share the same name and have the same function. System options
The data set option overrides the system option for the data set in the step in which it appears. In this example, the OBS= system option in the OPTIONS statement specifies that only the first 100 observations will be processed from any data set within the SAS job. The OBS= data set option in the SET statement, however,
options obs=100; data final; set two(obs=5) three; run; proc print data=final; run;