Second Birthday

It’s’s 2nd birthday this week!

The past 2 years have gone very quickly I must say. I set out with a goal of writing a least 1 post every month. Not very ambitious I know, but realistic for me nonetheless! I’ve never been much of a writer. I’ve always been impressed by people who appear to write so well, and even more so by those that have the stamina and skill to author and publish a book. Maths, Science & Computers have always been my thing ever since way back in school and I have generally avoided writing unless I had to. I do remember reading a blog post by Joel Spolsky a while back where he said that “Writing is a muscle. The more you write, the more you’ll be able to write.” It sounded pretty reasonable to me. As a training course instructor I’ve always found that one of the great benefits of teaching was that I necessarily had to learn much more of the details for whatever I was teaching. I’ve found that the same appears to be true about writing publicly accessible blog posts. The fear of being asked tough questions or being challenged on topics turns into the pleasure of learning more!

Well, I’m pleased to say that Continue reading “Second Birthday”

Some Milestones …

My blog has seen a few milestones of late:

  1. It had 1st birthday recently (boy that year went quickly!)
  2. … then, thanks to mentions from Waynette Tubs in the June edition of the SAS® Technical Report, and Andrew Ratcliffe in his excellent NOTE: blog, it saw a fair bit of extra traffic this month. The unique monthly visitor count for topped 1000 visitors for the first time! I got especially geeky excited when I saw it hit 1024.
  3. … and finally, in a lesser milestone, the number of total spam comments deleted over the past year topped 1000 too – would have been happy not to have seen that milestone, but I guess it’s probably peanuts compared to what other blogs get :)

Thanks to all the readers out there, and special thanks to those that comment, tweet, retweet and say nice things about on other sites/blogs too.

Happy SAS platform admin-ing to all.

Paul also available via

This blog is now available via the new aggregator, along with many other great SAS related blogs. It’s well worth checking out. If you’re wondering how it’s different from planet there’s a Q&A item about it at the bottom of the about page. now has a Blog Roll (and roll of rolls)

Thanks to Andy Ratcliffe for adding to his blog roll on NOTE:.

This was a timely reminder for me to add a blog roll to this blog, something I had been meaning to do for some time now, and so I was prompted to make a start on it. You can find the initial blog roll in the column on the right hand side of this page.

My intention with this blog roll is not to list every SAS related blog I read because there are already a few other better, more definitive blog rolls available. I will just add a few of my favourite ones, especially those where I have seen some platform admin related content in the past. The ones I am starting off by adding are:

  • NOTE: The blog of Andy Ratcliffe’s blog has a number of articles on architecture, admin, backup, DI, BI, OLAP etc.
  • real business intelligence for real users: Angela Hall’s blog is a veritable encyclopaedia of SAS BI related information useful for SAS platform administrators – not to be missed!
  • The SAS Dummy: Chris Hemedinger’s blog has many articles of interest to admins managing SAS Enterprise Guide and SAS Add-In for Microsoft Office installations.

If you are after a more complete list of SAS related blogs and RSS feeds I would also recommend the following:

… you might think of this as a blog roll of blog rolls! :)

BTW if you are daunted by the amount of SAS related information out there I would highly recommend Google Reader. I switched a few months ago and since then have been able to skim read a lot more resources, in a lot less time, from any device at hand (iPad, Android phone, MacBook, Linux notebook etc.) and being a web app all the devices are always in sync with each other. I’d be lost without it now.

What is

This is my brand new blog and I thought I’d better start by explaining who I am, why I created it, and what I am going to be using it for.

My name is Paul Homes and I have been working with SAS® software for over 20 years. In that time I have worked for a variety of companies in a variety of roles. These days I spend my time doing short term SAS consulting projects, teaching the occasional course and creating plug-ins that integrate with SAS software.

I should have been blogging ages ago, but always wondered what I would blog about. Most of the work I do these days is related to SAS platform administration and working with SAS metadata, so I thought that would be a good place to start.

I created as a place where I could jot down my thoughts, notes, handy techniques, code fragments and other general stuff related to managing SAS software installations and SAS metadata. There is a wealth of useful 3rd party materials online too, including SAS documents, SAS usage notes and other people’s blogs. I often find myself revisiting the same places time and time again but, having forgotten to bookmark them in the first place, I end up searching for them anew each time, so now I will link to them from this blog.

Although I created this blog primarily for my own purposes, to jog my memory and help me find stuff again, I hope that other people working with SAS metadata or as SAS platform administrators will also find it useful. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, please let me know by either commenting on the articles or sending me an email or tweet.

The types of topics I plan to cover in this blog include:

  • SAS platform administration
  • SAS metadata security
  • Working with SAS metadata and the SAS Open Metadata Interface
  • Operating system topics (Linux, UNIX, Windows) that might be useful for SAS platform administrators
  • Using Metacoda software for SAS platform administration

I work for Metacoda where I develop plug-ins to integrate with SAS software for the purpose of enhancing metadata access. I also use Metacoda software in SAS platform admin consulting work, so I plan to blog about how I find Metacoda software helps me in that role.