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SAS/GRAPH Software: Reference

Storing Graphics Output in SAS Catalogs

When you run a SAS/GRAPH procedure that produces graphics output, a copy of the graphics output is always stored in a SAS catalog. A catalog is a type of SAS file in which you can store different types of information, called catalog entries. Catalog entries of type GRSEG store graphics output. In addition, SAS/GRAPH procedures create other types of catalog entries such as DEV, CMAP, FONT, and TEMPLATE. You can store multiple catalog entries in one catalog.

You can use catalog entries to store graphics output that you want to display again without having to rerun the program. Use the GRAPH window, the GREPLAY procedure, or the SAS Explorer window to redisplay graphics output stored in catalog entries.

SAS catalogs can be either temporary or permanent. Temporary catalogs are erased at the end of each SAS session and cannot be retrieved. Permanent catalogs are retained until you delete them. Therefore, they exist after the end of a SAS session and can be used in later SAS sessions.

Unless you select another catalog, either temporary or permanent, SAS/GRAPH procedures always store a copy of your graph in the temporary catalog WORK.GSEG, regardless of the other forms of graphics output that you choose. By default, each graph is appended to the catalog. The graphs in WORK.GSEG are erased when you end the SAS session.

Accessing Catalogs from Different Versions of SAS

You can read Version 6 catalogs from Version 7 and Version 8, but you cannot write to them unless you port them.   [cautionend]
In some cases you have to specify an engine to read a Version 6 catalog from the current SAS version:

For more information, see Transporting Catalogs across Operating Environments.

All Version 7 and Version 8 applications that support catalog entries that also existed in Version 6 should be able to transparently read those Version 6 catalog entries. That is, if a Version 7 or Version 8 user specifies the SASEB (Version 6 compatibility) engine on the LIBNAME statement, the application should be able to read and process any Version 6 data that the SASEB engine may return.

The Version 7 and Version 8 compatibility engines also support write access to Version 6 catalogs.

Creating and Specifying Catalogs

To create or specify a catalog for graphics output, use the GOUT= option in a PROC statement. The general form is

PROC procedure-name GOUT=<libref.> catalog-name;

is the graphics procedure you are running.

is the name of a catalog where you want the output stored. If the specified catalog already exists, the procedure simply adds a catalog entry to the catalog. If the catalog does not exist, it is created.

For a temporary catalog, specify the name of the catalog and omit the libref. (This is a one-level name.) The temporary catalog is stored in the WORK library and erased when you end the SAS session.

For a permanent catalog, specify both a libref and a catalog name. (This is a two-level name.) Libref must already be assigned to a SAS data library that contains or will contain the catalog. For more information on assigning a libref, see LIBNAME Statement.

When you run the procedure, the output is automatically appended to the end of the specified catalog. If the procedure produces multiple graphics, then multiple entries are added to the catalog.

If you want a catalog entry to replace all of the existing entries in the catalog, you can use the following statement:

goptions goutmode=replace;
Be careful using GOUTMODE=REPLACE. GOUTMODE=REPLACE replaces all existing entries in the output catalog. You cannot retrieve previous entries once they have been replaced. See GOUTMODE for more information.  [cautionend]

Names and Descriptions of Catalog Entries

SAS/GRAPH software always assigns a name and a description to each catalog entry so you can identify it. By default, the names and descriptions are determined by the procedure. For example, a graph produced by the GCHART procedure would be assigned the name GCHART and a description like PIE CHART OF MONTH.

By default, SAS/GRAPH appends each new entry to the catalog. If you create more than one graph with a procedure during a SAS session and the graphs are stored in the same catalog, SAS/GRAPH software adds a number to the end of the name of subsequent catalog entries. This number makes the names unique within the catalog. For example, if you create three graphs with the GCHART procedure during the same SAS session, the catalog entries are named GCHART, GCHART1, and GCHART2. SAS/GRAPH software uses this naming convention whether catalog entries are being stored in a temporary or permanent catalog.

You can supply a name and description when you create the graph by using the NAME= and DESCRIPTION= options. If you create more than one graph of the same name, SAS/GRAPH software increments the specified name just as it does the default names.

Listing and Managing Catalog Entries

You can use the SAS Explorer window or the PROC GREPLAY window to display a list of all of the entries in a catalog. To open the Explorer window for a specific catalog, use the CAT command:

CAT libref.catalog-name

To open the PROC GREPLAY window, submit the PROC GREPLAY statement with or without a catalog specification. For details, see The GREPLAY Procedure.

Either method lets you view individual entries once you have displayed the list. For more information, see Displaying Graphics Output on Monitors or Terminals.

There are several ways to manage catalogs and catalog entries:

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