Chapter Contents


Moving and Accessing SAS Files across Operating Environments

Regressing SAS Data Sets from Version 8 to Version 6 Format

The only traditional method for regressing a data set from Version 8 to Version 6 is by using PROC COPY. However, if SAS/CONNECT is licensed, you can use PROC UPLOAD and PROC DOWNLOAD to regress a data set.

Version 8 support of long variable names, long variable labels, and long data set labels may make Version 8 data sets incompatible with Version 6 data sets. In order to revert back to Version 6, these long names must be truncated to a length that is supported in Version 6. Here are the truncation rules:

Version 8 Data Set Object Names to Regress Truncates to x characters for Version 6
Data set labels 40
Variable labels 40
Variable names 8

In order to transport Version 8 files back to Version 6, set the portable VALIDVARNAME system option to the value V6 in the SAS session in which you are transporting the file. Here are examples, which are specified in the form of a SAS system option and a macro variable:


For details about setting the VALIDVARNAME system option, see SAS Language Reference: Dictionary.

The truncation algorithm that is used to produce the 8-character variable name also resolves conflicting names:

The VALIDVARNAME option solves the long variable name truncation problem. However, there are no techniques for regressing these Version 8 features to Version 6:

The solution to regressing data sets with these features is to re-create the data sets without the Version 8 features in a Version 8 session.

Note:   No traditional methods support regressing catalogs from Version 8 to Version 6. However, SAS/CONNECT does support moving some catalog entries from Version 8 to Version 6. See Using SAS/CONNECT to Transport Files between Hosts for details.  [cautionend]

Chapter Contents



Top of Page

Copyright 1999 by SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC, USA. All rights reserved.