This module will read sas7bdat files using pure Python (2.6+, 3+). No SAS software required! The module started out as a port of the R script of the same name found here: but has since been completely rewritten.

Also included with this library is a simple command line script, sas7bdat_to_csv, which converts sas7bdat files to csv files. It will also print out header information and meta data using the --header option and it will batch convert files as well. Use the --help option for more information.

As is, I've successfully tested the script almost three hundred sample files I found on the internet. For the most part, it works well. We can now read compressed files!

I'm sure there are more issues that I haven't come across yet. Please let me know if you come across a data file that isn't supported and I'll see if I can add support for the file.


To install, run:

pip install sas7bdat

To create a sas7bdat object, simply pass the constructor a file path. The object is iterable so you can read the contents like this:

from sas7bdat import SAS7BDAT
with SAS7BDAT('foo.sas7bdat', skip_header=True) as reader:
    for row in reader:
        print row

Each row will be a list of values of type string, float,, datetime.datetime, or datetime.time. Without skip_header, the first row returned will be the SAS variable names.

If you'd like to get a pandas DataFrame, use the to_data_frame method:

df = reader.to_data_frame()

Variable attributes are available from reader.columns. The order of these columns will be the same as the corresponding values in each row. Each Column has the following attributes:

  • col_id (int) - the column number
  • name (bytes)
  • label (bytes)
  • format (str)
  • type (str)
  • length (int)