16.4.10 The SAVE Command

SAVE expression
     [/OUTFILE={file | *}]

The SAVE matrix command evaluates expression and writes the resulting matrix to an SPSS system file. In the system file, each matrix row becomes a case and each column becomes a variable.

Specify the name or handle of the SPSS system file on the OUTFILE subcommand, or ‘*’ to write the output as the new active file. The OUTFILE subcommand is required on the first SAVE command, in syntax order, within MATRIX. For SAVE commands after the first, the default output file is the same as the previous.

When multiple SAVE commands write to one destination within a single MATRIX, the later commands append to the same output file. All the matrices written to the file must have the same number of columns. The VARIABLES, NAMES, and STRINGS subcommands are honored only for the first SAVE command that writes to a given file.

By default, SAVE names the variables in the output file COL1 through COLn. Use VARIABLES or NAMES to give the variables meaningful names. The VARIABLES subcommand accepts a comma-separated list of variable names. Its alternative, NAMES, instead accepts an expression that must evaluate to a row or column string vector of names. The number of names need not exactly match the number of columns in the matrix to be written: extra names are ignored; extra columns use default names.

By default, SAVE assumes that the matrix to be written is all numeric. To write string columns, specify a comma-separated list of the string columns’ variable names on STRINGS.