05-05-2017 10:51 AM - edited 05-05-2017 10:52 AM
Not sure this is the right forum as there doesn't appear to be a "general" forum...
I know this sounds like an odd subject but the reason I ask is money. Setting up a server with SAS for the first year is quite expensive (more than $75k--I've received a quote). That isn't something that my new company really wants to spend their money given it would only be used by a handful of folks.
At a previous employer we had both SAS on desktops and on a server. I did everything on the desktop and used a remote connection to connect to my desktop at work. The data we use where I am now is decent in size but frankly it is not typically larger than 20 million lines and maybe 20 variables (numeric, some text but not long in length). We do some sorting, merging, etc. but if we were to optimize some of the processing we could probably improve the efficiency.
My question is has anyone done something like this? Just got a big desktop, get a ton of memory, get the large drives, etc. and then run PC SAS on it. Is there a hardware "limit" after which PC SAS won't work? My thought is that the 4-5 PC licenses that we need combined with one new big desktop would be much more inexpensive than setting up a server, loading SAS, etc.
05-05-2017 01:59 PM
My $0.02, and worth every penny you pay for, is that your solution sounds quite feasible for your organization.
"Server" type applications become much more important as the number of users and complexity of data sharing across multiple data sources increases, and especially if you need to provide common limits or abilities to groups of users (role being a typical buzzword). That power, besides the license cost, also comes with some less obvious costs such as the role of admistrator and change over of practices. (See the number of questions about "I can't access this data file on my harddrive" that arise from users not understanding what a server can see on a network).
05-06-2017 12:13 AM
I suggest you look at other factors than just cost and performance. Is it important to keep your SAS data secure? Are you running business-critical applications? Do you need to schedule regular jobs? How will you recover from PC hardware failure - do you need backups of your PC disks?
I'm asking these questions because if some of these are important to you I'd say a server-based solution may be more expensive but it will be more fit-for-purpose than PCs. With servers, IT takes care of ensuring they are working 24/7, they are secured, they are best for scheduling, they use SAN storage which is very reliable, and daily backups happen without you having to worry.
05-08-2017 08:53 AM
Thanks for your thoughts. I agree with what you are stating. Those are definite benefits to hosting on a server and definitely something to consider. I need to have a conversation with the firm that provides our IT support and see if they may have some solutions.