Accessing Excel from SAS without DDE


Geoff posted a nice article on his blog about how you can read and write Microsoft Excel spreadsheets programmatically from within SAS, without using DDE.

I've previously written about how it's difficult to continue using DDE from SAS when you have a distributed environment (SAS on a server machine, Excel on your desktop). People usually feel this pain first when using SAS Enterprise Guide to run DDE-dependent SAS programs, but it's not so much an problem with the application as it is a problem with topology.

Geoff's approach shows that it is possible to refactor your programs to work around this limitation, and that there might actually be some additional benefits when approaching Excel assets as data sources and not just cells in a worksheet.

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Chris Hemedinger

Director, SAS User Engagement

+Chris Hemedinger is the Director of SAS User Engagement, which includes our SAS Communities and SAS User Groups. Since 1993, Chris has worked for SAS as an author, a software developer, an R&D manager and a consultant. Inexplicably, Chris is still coasting on the limited fame he earned as an author of SAS For Dummies

1 Comment

  1. Alan Churchill on


    I wrote a free utility specifically for working with SAS and Excel that provides a large amount of customizations and options including style support, multiple dataset insertion, moving data into and out of Excel, etc.

    Look at SaviCells.

    It uses XML as the needed markup.

    Since that was put out there, a need arose for far greater customization. Hence, there is another version that is not in the public domain that is way more flexible and powerful. It includes supports for charts, printing, premade Excel templates. We are using this with SAS/IntrNet and producing great Excel sheets.


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