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SAS installation


The SAS software is distributed in a single tgz archive including a shell script ( that is used to install it. For each Operating System where the SAS was built, the file is named sas_14.0.0-<OS>.tgz, where OS is an acronym of the Operating System name, its version and the kernel type, either 32 or 64-bit. For example, sas_14.0.0-RHEL5.8-64.tgz corresponds to SAS 14.0.0 built on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.8 64-bit, sas_14.0.0-Darwin-14.0.0-64.tgz corresponds to SAS 14.0.0 built on Mac OS X 10.10.0 64-bit (a.k.a. Yosemite or alternately Darwin 14.0.0 64-bit), etc.

The Tables shown in the download page list all the available binaries distributed with this release together with guidelines to help you choose the most appropriate SAS to install on your Operating System.

To work with the SAS you need to install some additional tools. This page provides information on which are these tools and the versions we recommend to install.

Please take into account that to process your data with SAS you will need also the set of calibration data files known as Current Calibration Files (CCF). On this page you can find information on how to download and install these files.

Installation procedure

First download the most appropriate tgz archive for your Operating System from the Tables provided in the download page. Then, move it to a directory of your choice where you want to install the SAS. For example, let this be /top_dir (e.g. /usr/local/SAS/ or /Users/SAS).

Next, unpack the tgz archive with the command

tar zxf sas_14.0.0-<OS>.tgz

and inmediately after, execute the script as follows


and let it run until completion.

The installation script will check for the presence of the required components that were unpacked from the single tgz file according to an installation manifest named sas_14.0.0_install_manifest-<OS>.txt.

The installation script puts the SAS binaries, libraries and documentation in a directory named xmmsas_20141104_1833 below /top_dir, and finally runs the script configure_install that will create, in the same directory, two scripts named and setsas.csh. These scripts can be used later on to intialize the SAS.

The script configure_install is instructed to look also for the presence in your system of an installation of perl according to specific rules. If a valid perl binary is found, the script replaces the default /usr/local/bin/perl written in all SAS perl scripts, with such perl. If no perl binary is found in some expected locations, the configure_install script warns you about the problem and exits without completing the installation process. Then, you must install perl and run again the configure_install script.

In the process to look for an installed perl binary, you can force the configure_install script to look at a specific place by defining the environment variable SAS_PERL, to point to a directory where you have installed your own perl, e.g. in /home/user/my_perl/bin/perl. Alternately the configure_install script will look for a valid perl binary in /usr/local/bin/perl, /usr/bin/perl, /opt/local/bin/perl (MacPorts installation on Mac OS X) and /sw/bin/perl (Fink installation on Mac OS X).

The installation of the Virtual Machine for SAS 14.0.0(VM4SAS14) and a short introduction to its use is provided on this page.


Depending on your shell, to initialize the SAS, please source either or setsas.csh, as follows:

. /top_dir/xmmsas_20141104_1833/ (sh/bash/ksh)

source /top_dir/xmmsas_20141104_1833/setsas.csh (csh/tcsh)

The setsas.[c]sh scripts setup properly the shell environment to run the SAS in your operating system except for the SAS_CCFPATH, the SAS_ODF and the SAS_CCF environment variables. These must be defined specifically to work with the XMM-Newton data that you want to analyze with the SAS.

Before SAS is initialized, the HEASOFT software must be already initialized, otherwise the initialization of SAS issues an error message and it is aborted.

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This page was last updated on 11 February, 2015.