Using SAS on USC’s Compute Facilities

SAS is installed on the Center for High-Performance Computing, Basic Compute Facility (BCF), and Student Compute Facility (SCF) servers. Users must have an account on one of these compute facilities in order to use SAS or any of the other statistics packages with their UNIX accounts.

ITS automatically creates UNIX accounts for faculty, staff, and current students. For more information on accounts, including how to activate your account, go to

What is UNIX and how does it work?

UNIX is a multi-user operating system available to all faculty, staff, and students. The UNIX system allows you to use your own personal computer as a terminal to access a computer that is already running SAS software. Although the software is running on an outside server, the program works the same as if it were downloaded and installed directly on your computer. This can be an easy solution for users who wish to use the SAS program without installing the software on their own computer.

To access the UNIX server on the USC campus, you must connect to the USC network or USC Secure Wireless. For information on accessing the USC Network, see the
Wired Network for Faculty and Staff (USCNet)
page. For information on accessing USC Secure Wireless, see Wireless Access to the USC Network.

To access USC UNIX from an off-campus location, you must use the Virtual Private Network (VPN). See the VPN Overiew page for instructions on accessing the VPN.

Basic UNIX concepts

ITS also has documentation that provides information on the basic concepts you will need to understand in order to access and use SAS on UNIX. See our UNIX help pages for more information.

Moving your data to your UNIX account

Before you can use your data in SAS on UNIX, you must first move it to your UNIX account. Depending on whether you are a faculty or staff member, student, or faculty or staff member at the Health Sciences Campus, you will need to log into,, or respectively. If you are using a Center for Advanced Research Computing (CARC) account, you will need to log into For more information about the Secure File Transfer Programs (SFTP) that you will need to use to transfer your data, see the Secure File Transfer (SFTP and SCP) Overview page.

When using the UNIX server, it is advisable to save all of your data to your own personal computer and load it every time you open SAS on UNIX. Information about preventing data loss while using the server can be found on the Preventing Data Loss (File Deletion) page. Information on transferring files back and forth on UNIX can be found on the Transferring Files page in our UNIX documentation.

Setting up SAS on your UNIX account

You can access SAS on UNIX from computers running both the Windows and Macintosh operating systems.

For instructions on how to access SAS on UNIX from a Windows computer, please see the
Using SAS on UNIX (Win) documentation.

For instructions on how to access SAS on UNIX from a Mac computer, please see the
Using SAS on UNIX (Mac) documentation.

Please note, SAS software cannot be installed directly on Macintosh computers. Mac users will need to use the UNIX version of the software or install SAS on a Windows virtual machine on their Mac.