Chapter Contents


Getting Started with the SAS System Using SAS/ASSIST Software

Invoking the SAS System

To invoke the SAS System, follow these steps:

  1. Log on to your operating environment.

  2. Type the command to access the SAS System (for example, SAS) and press ENTER. Contact the SAS Support Consultant at your site for the specific command used at your site to access the SAS System.

    Depending on your operating environment and the SAS System configuration at your site, some or all of the following windows appear:

    SAS Windowing Environment


Note that some windows may be "hidden" beneath others. To see the other windows, use one of the following methods, depending on your operating environment:

To get more information about any of these windows, select Help from the window's menu bar, and then select Using This Window.

Selecting Items

When instructions in this book direct you to "select" an item, use any of the methods listed below according to your operating environment:

Entering Commands

You can enter commands within the SAS System by using one of three methods:

Menus and function keys are described in the following sections. Typing commands at the Command ===> prompt or in the ToolBox command window is not discussed in this book. Contact the SAS Support Consultant at your site for further information about using commands with the SAS System.

Note:   This book uses menus for all examples.  [cautionend]

Using Menus

A menu is a list of functions, actions, or commands. Pull-down menus appear below items that you select in the menu bar at the top of a screen. Pop-up menus can appear anywhere in a screen. In SAS/ASSIST software, you activate pop-up menus by selecting the buttons in the WorkPlace menu. Each menu has items that you can select to perform certain actions.

Note:   Some actions are also available through the function keys. You can use either the menus or the function keys to perform these actions, whichever you prefer. Performing an action using function keys often requires fewer keystrokes than performing the same action using menus. See Using Function Keys for further information about function keys.  [cautionend]

  1. To use menus, do one of the following:

    Note:   For Microsoft Windows and OS/2 users, your menu bar is at the top of the main SAS System window. It changes according to which SAS window (Program Editor, Log, Output, and so on) is active. Click on the Program Editor window to activate it.  [cautionend]

  2. To use an item on the menu bar, select it. For example, select File from the Program Editor menu bar. The File menu appears.

    File Menu


  3. Select the action you want to perform. If an action has dots next to it, when you select the action, another window appears. For example, select Save As... from the File menu. The Save As window appears.

    Save As Window


  4. To exit a window, select the appropriate button, for example, Cancel, OK, Close, or Goback. For this example, select Cancel.

  5. If an action has a triangle or an arrow next to it, when you select the action, another menu appears. This feature is called cascading menus. For example, select Solutions and then Analysis. A menu of various SAS System-related options appears.

    Cascading Menus


  6. To exit a menu, use a mouse to point to a location outside the menu box, and then click the mouse button; or, use the arrow keys to position the cursor anywhere outside the menu box, and press ENTER. Make sure the cursor is not on another item on the menu bar or on an item on the window, or else that item will be selected when you click the mouse button or press ENTER.

    If you want to return to a command line from the menu bar, follow this selection path:

    Turn Command Line On
    The menu bar is replaced by a Command ===> prompt.

Using Function Keys

Function keys are keyboard keys that you can define to perform different actions. When you are using SAS/ASSIST software, the function keys help you to perform certain actions quickly.

Note:    Some actions are also available through the menus. You can use either the menus or the function keys to perform these actions, whichever you prefer. Performing an action with function keys often requires fewer keystrokes than does performing the same action with menus. While the examples in this book use menus, you can use function keys instead.  [cautionend]

  1. To see how each key is defined when you first access the SAS System, follow this selection path from any SAS window:

    A list of function keys and their corresponding actions appears.

    KEYS Window


    Note:   The default function key assignments vary among different operating environments. Your KEYS window may look different from the one pictured here.  [cautionend]

  2. If some function keys are not visible in the window, use the scroll bars or the FORWARD and BACKWARD function keys to view all the key settings. Note which keys correspond to certain actions. Actions that you need to perform often include

    Note:   Depending on your operating environment, some of the keys listed above may not already be defined in the KEYS window.  [cautionend]

  3. To assign a command to a function key, place the cursor in the Definition column for the desired function key and type the command. For a description of SAS System commands, see the online SAS System Help. Some additional commands that you can use in SAS/ASSIST software include

  4. To exit the KEYS window, use one of the following methods:

    If you have made changes, a dialog box opens, asking you if you want to save the changes. Select Yes to save the changes or No to exit without saving. The KEYS window disappears.

Note:   You can also access the KEYS window from SAS/ASSIST software using the same method described earlier in this section.  [cautionend]

Chapter Contents



Top of Page

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