Handy SAS Usage Note for Troubleshooting UNIX Authentication

Whilst troubleshooting why LDAP based users couldn’t authenticate against a SAS Metadata Server configured for host authentication, I found this handy resource: SAS Usage Note 39891: Using PROC PERMTEST to diagnose UNIX host authentication issues in SAS® 9.2. The server in question already had correctly functioning LDAP host authentication via PAM, it was just that the SAS Metadata Server wasn’t able to authenticate the LDAP users. The usage note helped me fix the problem by leading me to the SASFoundation/SAS9.2/utilities/bin/sasauth.conf file where I found it had methods=pw instead of methods=pam (must have chosen the wrong options at install time). I actually didn’t need to run PROC PERMTEST this time but the usage note contains clear instructions on how to when required. Interestingly PROC PERMTEST doesn’t seem to appear in the Base SAS® 9.2 Procedures Guide.

Spreading the WORK load

I found a handy tip from Rafi in the discussion Allocating SAS WORK Libraries Dynamically in SAS 9.2 in the LinkedIn group SAS Architects/Administrators/Implementation Specialist. It explains how to use a variation on the SAS system option WORK= to spread work libraries over a number of I/O paths using either random or available space methods. This can potentially help you improve I/O performance for work libraries en-masse, and/or get access to more available space, by spreading those work libraries over a number of different devices.

This usage of the WORK= SAS system option is documented in a number of places: