Stata is a powerful statistical package that provides data management, statistical analysis, simulations, high quality graphics, and programming tools. It is often used in the fields of epidemiology, biomedicine, economics, and sociology. Stata allows user-written commands, which can be loaded into Stata and used along with the Stata built-in commands. A wide variety of data formats are supported, including .csv (ASCII comma separated value), .xls and .xlsx (Microsoft Excel’s formats). Stata’s own file format is platform independent and can be easily copied from one operating system to another.

Availability and Setup

Stata version 14.1 is available on the Shared Computing Cluster (SCC). There are two builds available – Stata/MP (multiprocessor version) and Stata/SE (standard version). Both are available in either a command-line or graphical user interface (GUI) mode. Stata/MP is the fastest version of Stata and is designed for advanced parallel processing. Both versions of Stata allow datasets with as many as 32,767 variables with at most 10,998 right-hand-side variables in a model. Number of observations in the dataset is limied only by available RAM.

BU faculty, staff, and students can purchase an individual Stata license. For prices, consult Stata’s website.

To enable the Graphics User Interface mode, Stata should be invoked under the X Window System on X terminals or workstations.

Running Stata

To run Stata in the default command-line mode on the SCC, type:

scc1% module load stata
scc1% stata

To run Stata in the interactive GUI mode on the SCC, type:

scc1% module load stata
scc1% xstata

To invoke the multiprocessor version of Stata in either command-line or GUI mode, type:

scc1% module load stata-mp
scc1% stata-mp


scc1% module load stata-mp
scc1% xstata-mp

To exit Stata type exit at the Stata prompt.

To execute a Stata file in a non-interactive (running in the background) mode, type:

scc1% stata -b do filename

Additional Help/Documentation

To get help for an individual Stata command, type help command, for example help mean will provide a help page for the usage of the mean command. During an interactive GUI session, you can also ask for the complete help manual, by selecting Help -> PDF Documentation in the menu or by typing help at the Stata prompt.

We also have a simple Stata “hello world” example to get you started.