Are you afraid of big commitments? Do you like to shop around thoroughly before making a purchase decision? I can't help you with most of Life's Big Choices, but I can help you in one way: I can show you how to learn more about your data set before you open it.
In SAS Enterprise Guide 4.2, we added a feature that allows you to view the details of your data sets (such as the data set labels, how many records they contain, and more) while you browse the contents of a SAS library. What's more, you can also see the column names and column types right from within the file dialog, providing you with that peace of mind that comes only with knowing that, yes, you've selected the correct data set.
But, the feature is not turned on by default. Why not? Because gathering this information incurs a slight performance hit as you browse your libraries. For local file-based SAS data sets you probably won't notice much of a slowdown.
Here's how you turn it on:
- Select Tools->Options. The Options window appears.
- On the General page, check the box that reads, "Show full details when viewing SAS libraries in File Dialog details view."
The next time that you select File->Open->Data and navigate to the Libraries view, select the Details option from the toolbar in the file dialog, as shown here:
When you drill down into a SAS library, you'll be overwhelmed with a tremendous set of new details, as shown here:
But wait -- there's more! Go back up to the toolbar and tick the Show detail pane option, and on the right-hand side you'll see the list of SAS variables that lurk inside a SAS data set, as you select it within the list.
Try it! Turn on the option and give it a whirl. It will help you to eliminate "buyer's remorse" (or at least "data-opener's remorse") from your daily life.