SAS is great at getting data from a huge variety of sources. With its SAS/ACCESS connectors, SAS can get data from these sources in an optimised fashion, i.e. using the native capabilities of the source data provider. In these days of increasingly large set of data, optimisation and efficiency are crucial factors. Steve Overton wrote an article in the Business Intelligence Notes blog earleir this month in which he offered some experience and advice with regard to gatrhering data into SAS via ODBC.
ODBC is a generic means of accessing a large variety of different data sources. As such, it's less easy to optimise the process, but nonetheless we want the data to flow at the best possible rate. In SAS Administration: Fetch Big Data Faster Across ODBC, Steve describes how judicious use of the FETCH and USEDECLAREFETCH parameters in the ODBC.INI file can make big differences to the speed of your data access. Valuable.