Date: Wed, 30 Oct 2002 15:55:15 -0500
Sender: "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
Subject: Re: Selecting a brand new computer system
I guess there is a reason why you don't run these large jobs on the server
Performance depends on a number of things. Certainly the hardware profile is
important, but so are the OS (can it use all the memory you have?), the SAS
installation and configuration, and the SAS code.
Major re-engineering, and introduction of hand-coded processes a la Dorfman,
often pays off, but sometimes there is low-hanging fruit in the form of
relatively simple tweaks which reduce bottlenecks. It's worth a look. After
all, replacement hardware may cut your 7-hour job to 2 hours. But some
performance tuning of the code might do the same.
On Tue, 29 Oct 2002 12:59:46 -0500, Nick I <ni14@MAIL.COM> wrote:
>Dear SAS Experts,
>Today I have a question not about your programming skills but rather about
you computer hardware skills.
>I have a computer at work with four different hard drives, about 1 Gig of
RAM, Pentium 3, speed about 800 I think it is. One of my hard drives has
about 200 GB of memory and the other drives anywhere from 7GB to about 20
GB. I have enough space although I'd like to have more if I can. Anyway. I
have been complainig to my boss about how slow my computer is and how many
hours it takes to do a PROC SORT, PROC SQL stuff, general data manipulation
>It is true, however, that the data sets I'm dealing with can become very
large (5 Million records, 170 variables, containing Names, Addresses, SSNs,
transaction data, etc.) Merging and doing SQL joints on these data sets can
be quite time consuming. Sometimes it takes about 7 hrs to do an SQL query
if I have other things running in batch mode.
>So my boss had just about enough of my crying and complaining. Today he
said to me to just give him a proposal of what I want and he'll get it for
me. (Did I say he spent close to 500K buying me a SAS server? My Christmas
>That's where you come in. I'd like for you to advise me on which computer
system to buy which will be extra fast and which will allow me to manipulate
huge SAS data sets very quickly. (Please don't talk servers for he already
bought one. I'm talking about my desktop computer.) I'd like the computer to
be extra fast even when I have several (maybe 2 to 5) other process running
in batch mode. (I work on multiple projects at once . . . So when one
project is running I get another one started, etc.) I would also like the
computer to have tons of hard disk space. Is it a good idea to have a
computer with physically separate hard drives so I can maximize data
manipulation times by reading from and writing to different disks? (That's
what I do now with my 4 hard drives.)
>Please give me your thoughts so I can put something together and give to my
boss who then will give it to . . . who then will give it to . . .
>Thanks a bunch!
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