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when you start a statistical program you must understand one fundamental concept. Windows explorer holds your files. No matter how fly  or great your programming code seems to be- you better know where those files are stored. If you have no clue where to find those files …guess what? Your program will not run without guidance from you. Whether its STATA , SAS, or something else. You need to provide a command that tells your software to look for the data file under a folder in  windows explorer.

Come on people! This is no difference from working with a microsoft word file or excel. You simply copy the path name for the file you want to analyze and paste the path into your code for reading in the files.

And most programs will allow you to read in multiple files at once. Some programs will read in any file type form Explorer. But first you need to learn the path of your file on your computer before you start working with it. I have seen many instances where people freeze up because they saved the file to their computer , but they have no idea where to find it. Or you are working with apple computers which pose a level of complexity that pc’s users never experience when programming. Know your computer…know your files…understand how files are located and read into statistical software.

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