I would like to submit the same .sas job iterating over an argument, but I would like job only to be submitted after the previous is completed. Here is my attempt:


    export weeks="1 2 3"
    for week in $weeks

    sas -log job$week.log job.sas > /dev/null & pid_ind=$!
    wait $pid_ind

    echo "job complete for week $week"

This results in all the jobs being submitted almost at once, and then they sit in the queue. Can anyone elaborate on the 'wait' command? I am trying to hold off submission until the previous SAS job was completed, not submitted.


You have a mistake, for loop terminated with done keyword, not fi.

for variable in lists
    # do something here
  • This should be a comment on the question, not an answer. – formixian Jun 23 '14 at 13:41
  • @Jean-PhilippeGravel: The OP had changed the question. – cuonglm Jun 23 '14 at 15:56
  • Ok, I understand. – formixian Jun 23 '14 at 16:06

Remove the "wait" command, there is no use for it. Aslo, remove the "& pid_ind=$!" This code puts the job into a background process that cause the problem you are experiencing.

Outside of daemon processes (and processes launched in background), commands within a script are synchronous. Each commands waits for the last one to finish.


weeks="3 4 5"
echo "Waiting for first job to complete..."
for week in $weeks; do
    sas -log job$week.log job.sas > /dev/null
    echo "job complete for week $week"
  • I've just noticed that you use /bin/ksh, I don't know how ksh behave but you should give it a try in both shells to be sure. – formixian Jun 23 '14 at 13:46
  • This is essentially what I have now, a sas job and then a sleep statement that exceeds the typical runtime of the job. This is an inefficient use of time that I'd like to tighten up. – mlegge Jun 23 '14 at 13:51
  • Ok, I got it, you use the & to put the job in the background, just do that command line, removing everything after "&": sas -log job$week.log job.sas > /dev/null – formixian Jun 23 '14 at 13:58
  • I updated my answer removing the "&" and following portion. This syntax should work as you expected now. – formixian Jun 23 '14 at 14:15
  • This is a completely different question than the one I've submitted this answer on. @mkemp6 If your goal is to execute each jobs one by one sequentially this is the right answer. On the other hand, if you want to ask a question about how the wait command works, you shoud post another question. – formixian Jun 23 '14 at 16:09

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