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FRONTIER Version 4.

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A STOCHASTIIC FRONTIER ANALYSIS PROGRAM
by
Tim Coelli
Centre for Efficiency and Productivity Analysis
School of Economics
University of Queensland
Brisbane, QLD 4072
Australia.
email: t.coelli@economics.uq.edu.au
Web: http://www.uq.edu.au/economics/cepa/
GETTING STARTED:
1. Open the WINDOWS EXPLORER program on your PC.
2. Create a new folder on your hard drive, for example called FRONTIER, by
using the File/New/Folder option.
3. Copy ALL the files associated with FRONTIER into this folder, using
the File/Copy option or by "drag-and-drop".
4. If the files are stored in a FRONT41.ZIP file, you will then need
to unzip (extract) the files by double-clicking on the zip file and
extracting the contents of the zip file into the FRONTIER folder.
FILES USED BY FRONTIER
FRONTIER uses three text files when it conducts an analysis. These are:
- a data file (eg. named eg1-dta.txt)
- an instruction file (eg. named eg1-ins.txt)
- an output file (eg. named eg1-out.txt)
All of these files are text files. They can be edited using many programs.
For example, NOTEPAD, WORDPAD, WORD, WORD PERFECT, etc.
We suggest you use WORDPAD to view and edit these files.
HOW TO RUN THE PROGRAM
To practice running FRONTIER double-click on the FRONT41.EXE file name.
The program will then ask for an instruction file name. Type in
eg1-ins.txt
(and hit the RETURN key). FRONTIER will only take a few seconds to complete
this small example. To look at the output file (eg1-out.txt) you then
simply double-click on the eg1-out.txt file name.
FILE NAMES IN DOS
FRONTIER is a DOS computer program. In DOS all file names must satisfy certain
restrictions:
- no more than 12 characters
- no more than 3 characters after the period (".")
- no more than 8 characters before the period
That is, the largest possible file name has the form:
XXXXXXXX.XXX
Since we use text files, the file name will always have "txt" after the
period. That is:
XXXXXXXX.txt
CREATING A NEW INSTRUCTION FILE
The easiest way to create a new instruction/command file is to open
an existing instruction file (eg. eg1-ins.txt) using WORDPAD and then save
it under a new name (eg. abc2-ins.txt). This is done by using the File/SaveAs
options in WORDPAD. Then you can edit the contents of this new file to suit
your new analysis.
CREATING DATA FILES USING EXCEL
Many people store their data in Excel files. To construct a text file from
an Excel file, open the file in Excel and then use the File/SaveAs option in
Excel and save it as a text file. However, be sure to remove any column names
first - the data file should only contain numbers.
MANUAL
Coelli, T. (1996) 'A Guide to FRONTIER Version 4.1: A Computer
Program for Stochastic Frontier Production and Cost Function
Estimation', CEPA Working Paper 96/08, University of New England.
A COPY OF THIS GUIDE IS PROVIDED IN THE FILE: FRONT41.PDF.
For additional information on these methods see Chapters 8 and 9 in Coelli,
Rao and Battese (1998), An Introduction to Efficiency and Productivity Analysis,

Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston.
LIABILITY
Every effort has been made to ensure that this software is free of errors.
However, the software is supplied without any warranty as to the
performance or fitness of the program for any particular purpose. All
risk relating to the results and performance of this program is assumed by
the user. CEPA shall not be liable for any damages resulting from the
use of this product.