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Upgrading to the Latest Version of SAS® 9.4 M8 Q&A, Slides, and On-Demand Recording

Started ‎05-28-2023 by
Modified ‎10-23-2023 by
Views 5,426

Watch this Ask the Expert session to learn the best practices and importance of upgrading to SAS 9.4 M8. 


Watch the Webinar


You will learn about:

  • Comprehensive security enhancements in SAS 9.4 M8.
  • Beneficial new features in M8.
  • Upgrading in place.
  • Using the System Evaluation Tool to ensure a smooth upgrade.


The questions from the Q&A segment held at the end of the webinar are listed below and the slides from the webinar are attached.



Is RHEL 8.6 supported? Is AIX 7.3 the requirement for M8?

Yes, those are, or higher with the versions there. RHEL 8.4 or higher works with M8 and AIX 7.2 or 7.3 or higher will work.


With the SAML support, will this help mitigate the need for VPN/VDI in order to use SAS in Windows 2019? Currently, it is one of the only apps that we have to run through VPN/VDI.

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


Will we still be able to call a stored process as Rest API service in M8?

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


Are you recommending Java 11 even for z/OS? I understand you are only requiring Java 8.

On z/OS, only Java 8 is supported.


Would it create problems if we have source installed jdk17 instead of jdk11?

No, because SAS will install the JDK 11 that we need.


Should I invest the time to better prepare moving to Viya 4 instead of the Upgrade to M8?

That is a very loaded question and one that really requires a better understanding of how you're using SAS 9 currently and what your future plans are. We need to have a better understanding of what you're wanting to look forward to with Viya 4 if moving into the cloud. If running in Kubernetes and all of that is good for you, then yes, move to Viya 4. But I strongly suggest you take this offline with your Customer Success Rep and have that discussion.


This migration utility is only for the server, right?

I'm not really sure what will need to be migrated on the client side, but it's for the back-end server, the mid-tier, all those components.


You mentioned that SAS AML will be shipped with M8 later this year. What version of SAS AML will be shipped?

AML 9.x will release 23w47 (21NOV2023)


How easily can we upgrade from SAS M7 to M8? Is it good to migrate from M7 to M8 or to SAS Viya? Will TTU 17.20 will be supported on M8?

I don't know what TTU 17.20 is. It all depends on how elaborate your SAS 9.4 M7 install is, but again you can do an upgrade in place to M8, which can take half a day to do or some things there. Regarding migrating to Viya, I think it’s going to be best to have a conversation with your customer success team to understand how you're currently using SAS 9.4 M7, and everything that would need to happen there.


Is there any change in SAS 9.4 M8 from a grid computing perspective?

Nope, it still works the exact same.


What is the planned support life for M8?

M8's planned support life is a minimum of five years. It went production on the 31st of January 2023 and it will be supported at least through the 31st of January 2028.


If I’m on M7 on supported OS for M8 and don’t have Java 11, did that diagram say I can proceed with the upgrade?

If you're on a supported version of an OS that's for M8, it will have Java 11. Or we'll have the ability for you to put Java 11 on there. So that is one of the criteria for our baseline is that OS has Java 11.


If we have HTTPS configured for SAS Web Server and SAS Environment Manager on 9.4 M7 right now, does UIP to 9.4 M8 affect the SSL certificate in any way?

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


For installation, is it possible to directly install M8 version if I don't have prior release on 2016 Window standard server OS?

I don't know why it matters about having a previous version of the operating system. A standalone version on 2016 will work. Our previous version of SAS is on there. What you would be doing is getting the depot for SAS 9.4 M8 and installing it as if it's the first time you've ever installed SAS on Windows 2016.


If we’re working on Physical Servers and want to use Migration, do we need new hardware (new physical box) or can we just create a new install path (ex: /SAS/SAS94M8)?

The answer to that question is going to depend on if you are Windows or Linux Unix. If you are the latter, you should be able to do the exact same thing, provided that this will not interrupt your customers or your users that are currently running on it. If you are currently running on that machine and the operating system version is supported for SAS 9.4 M8 – if you’re on Windows. then no, you won't be able to do that. You'll have to get new hardware for Windows because the registry won't allow you to have two versions of SAS installed at the same time.


What is the future of SAS 9.x? Is SAS planning to drop and force all to Viya?

That is a very loaded question. No, SAS 9 is available. We know there are some other things that need to be done from a security point of view and we're researching how we're going to be able to support those. The number one thing we're looking at right now is Spring 6. We know that we need to be going to Spring 6 for a lot of security concerns our customers have. We are actively researching how to be able to get these security fixes added to SAS 9 and how we'll be able to get them out the door to you.


Are the steps and time to update to M8 similar to updating from say M3=>M7 [using Windows 11 desktop]?



I see that we no longer provide the default plan files. Can we put some default plan files in the software download location?

The Standard Plan files are available at The link is available from the technical support downloads and fixes page.


How about Federation Server?

Fed Server is part of M8.


Can we upgrade it to M8 from M2/3/4 or we have to be on M7 first?

You can upgrade from M2. I know we did that testing in house before we shipped it out the door, so yes, you can go do that. The M7 was in reference to doing it if you were running on RHEL 6.


If I stay with M7, how long will M7 be supported?

UPDATED 23OCT2023:  SAS 9.4M7 is in Standard Support until 01SEP2025.  Please see this page for more details SAS 9.4 & Earlier Releases | SAS Support


You mention that we need Java 11 on the server before migrating. Isn't it included in the install package?

Our private JRE is included on the install package that gets put where you're doing it. But the migration tool we run, which is just a tool that runs over on your source machine, is going to be relying on Java 11 to be there. We don't install Java 11 on that for you, so you need to make sure it's there.


Any information about different PHP supported release (intrnet module) from SAS 9.4 M8 compared with previous releases?

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


We do have SAS client 9.4 on workstations. Is Java 11 needed for this version?

There's several SAS clients and it depends what this SAS client is that you're running. If it's SAS Studio that runs in a browser, no. If it's something else, you’ll need to work with your Customer Success Rep to get some answers about what's going on. But the migration tool is for the back-end SAS servers. I don't know of anything that would need to be done for the client pieces, but again, it'll depend on exactly what your client pieces are.


Does the system evaluation Tool have to run on each Tier of SAS topology like Meta, Middle and Compute Tier even if both Meta and Middle Tier are on one machine and Compute Tier on another machine?

You just need to run it on the physical instance of an OS for those machines.


I’m using a standalone SAS install on Win11, 9.4 M6. How much longer will M6 be supported?

It'll be supported for five years after it's gone out the door. It went out the door in November of 2018, so it'll definitely be supported through November of 2023 and with limited support after that.


Can you update the windows OS instead of migrating to a new Windows server and install SAS 9.4 M8?

Short answer, SAS has a policy that we do not support just updating the operating system.


Long answer to that question is going to be it depends. By updating, is this just updating a maintenance version of the Windows Server or is this going from Windows Server 2020 to 2022? I'm not even sure those are valid numbers, but if that's the case then SAS does not support you doing an upgrade in place of an operating system across major versions of the operating system. Case in point, if you currently have SAS 9 running on RHEL 6 and you decide to do an upgrade in place to RHEL 7, that's not supported because we've never tested it. We don't know what kinds of issues will be happening there, so I'm going to say it depends. Let's work with your customer success groups to get better answers there.


Are we able to change topology with M8 during migration if we use SAS Migration Utility?

It depends on what you mean by topology. If you're doing the migration, what you're going to do is stand up new hardware and install the version of M8 on that new hardware. So, you can change the underlying topology there. All the migration tool is going to pull over is the various Metadata, server, repository, and other bits of information like that. Software files then apply on top of what you have fresh out-of-the-box. Default M8 installs will have to be able to replicate everything working like the M7 or previous version did. If that's not what you're asking, reach out to your Customer Success Rep.


So, I've done this migration from M7 AIX and this UIP whacked the metadata ACT access control template. Is there a way to backup up those config file separately and restore them? Or are those configs complete differently??

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


When will the SAS Cost and Profitability Management (CPM) 8.4 solution be available with SAS 9.4 M8?

It is scheduled to ship 23w38 (19SEP2023).


Can M8 use Open JDK during install?

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


SMU can only be used if the topology is same?

SMU is the migration utility and the topology being the same means the same number of back-end servers. We need more details about what you specifically mean by topology being the same. Please work with your customer success team to answer your question.


Can you provide a guide to the in-place upgrade?

I believe that's available. If you go to What's new in SAS 9 M8, there should be a link in there that talks about doing the upgrade in place.  SAS Help Center


Do we have newer SAS Customer Intelligence solution version in M8? Our current version on m7 is 6.6.

SAS CI has no intention of moving beyond M7. They're currently looking to move on to their next version. It will come out on Viya 4, but they've said that they are not planning to move to M8. If that's an issue, I strongly suggest you vocalize that to your account team and customer service representatives.


Java is at v20 according to - why is SAS using v11?

The short answer to that is when we go through and look at all of the third-party components that we use and what they work with, we have to go with a common version of Java. Java 11 is what we're working with. I don't know if that's because of Spring 5 not supporting the later versions of Java or what. But again, one of the things I mentioned is that we have a research project on the fact that we need to move to Spring 6. We also know that Java 11 is end of life here shortly and we need to move to a new version of Java. We know we need to support a different version of Java as well just from security and modernization features.


Did you say that for an UIP to M8, do I need to unconfigure the products that are not support first?

You are correct. Before you do an upgrade in place, you do have to uninstall the products that have been deprecated prior to you doing the install for M8.


RHEL 7.9, Migrating M6 to M8---will it pull custom configs (ex: sas_env_local, odbc.ini, tnsnames.ora)?

An upgrade in place will preserve those customizations. If this is a migration to new hardware, I'm thinking you're going to have to manually do those. Please work with your Customer Success Rep if that’s the case.


Does the system evaluation tool tell us which products have been deprecated?

It is my understanding it does do that report, yes. One of the enhancements to that tool this year is the fact that it comes back with X number of issues when run and will list out the products that have been deprecated.


Does M8 (Windows) come with 2010 Access Engine or 2016 Access engine?

Please work with your Customer Success Rep to answer this question.


Is there a change to SAS/ACCESS Interface to PC Files  in terms of accessing Excel Files and Access Database Files?

In SAS 9.4 M8, when upgrading from 9.4 M7, it should work the same as it did before. There weren’t any enhancements, or anything added to that.


Did you say earlier that SAS supports RHEL 9?

RHEL 9 is not supported with SAS.


What changed in WIA? That's been part of SAS for several M releases...

Thank you for your question. We are not sure what you mean by WIA.  Please work with your SAS customer success specialist for this answer.


When will the SAS CPM 8.4 solution be available with SAS 9.4 M8? CPM - Cost and Profitability Management

It is scheduled to ship 23w38 (19SEP2023).


Can you please display the LINUX version that is minimum for M8?

The supported Linux operating systems at this time are: Oracle 7.9 and 8.3 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.9 and 8.4 SUSE/SLES 12.5 and 15.


Link for webinar for SAS Content Assessment?

Here's the link:


Recommended Resources

SAS® 9.4 Guide to Software Updates and Product Changes

SAS 9.4 System Requirements

SAS 9.4 is Now Available!!

Moving from SAS®9 to SAS® Viya®

Move to Viya Board

Please see additional resources in the attached slide deck.


Want more tips? Be sure to subscribe to the Ask the Expert board to receive follow up Q&A, slides and recordings from other SAS Ask the Expert webinars.  


The "Watch the webinar" link above goes to "How do I Debug a SAS DATA Step" webinar. Can this be corrected?

@SASKiwi Here's the link to the webinar, (I am unable to edit the link above.)

@MichelleHomes  - Thanks!

The link has been fixed.  

Where can we get more information about SAML Authentication in SAS 9.4 M8?




I'm still using SAS 9.4M5 with my SAS Analytics Pro Licence on Windows 10, just because the process to update to a later version is unclear to me, as a non SAS admin person (too many links and explanations to too many scenarios/products).

Based on my configuration, what steps should I follow to upgrade to SAS 9.4M8?



ps. Here I read that I have to remove retired elements and therefore I have to remove SAS ODS Graphics Editor for example (Starting with SAS 9.4M8, SAS ODS Graphics Editor and SAS ODS Graphics Designer are retired products Here I'm supposed to be explained how to do it but the description does not match my configuration. I don't have any option to complete the uninstallation even tho I've open the SAS Deployment Manager as Windows Admin .


@xxformat_com   Does this question/answer not help you?

Can you provide a guide to the in-place upgrade?

I believe that's available. If you go to What's new in SAS 9 M8, there should be a link in there that talks about doing the upgrade in place.  SAS Help Center

Thanks @MargaretC In the end I've uninstalled SAS 9.4M5 in order to install to be install SAS 9.4M8. That was easier for me.

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Last update:
‎10-23-2023 11:40 AM
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