Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Henry Phillips and the 77 GB file

So today at work SAS wasn't functioning. It was giving an error that it was out of memory. After some investigation by some people, we found that the problem was a 77 gigabyte file that belonged to me. You may be wondering, "Henry, how the hell did you make a 77 GB file?"

Well.....I screwed up some SQL code that I was writing which gave back a very large amount of data. So large, in fact, that the process was taking far longer than it should have. So I told it to stop. When it wouldn't stop, I tried to cancel the process on the server. When that didn't work, I just canceled the SAS process on my own computer.

Normally, when you shut down SAS, any temporary data that hasn't been exported gets deleted. It won't get deleted, however, if you don't properly shut down SAS. By canceling my local SAS process, the server never got the signal to delete the temporary data, and thus it remained on the server, leaving a 77 gigabyte file that prevented people from doing their work.

Other than that, my first day operating solo went very well. I completed two data requests and got some more training in. Whoopee!