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SIR is a general-purpose code capable of dealing with gradients of the physical quantities with height. It admits one and two-component model atmospheres. It allows the recovery of the stratification of the temperature, the magnetic field vector, and the line of sight velocity through the atmosphere, and the micro- and macroturbulence velocities - which are assumed to be constant with depth. It is based on the response functions, which enter a Marquardt nonlinear least-squares algorithm in a natural way. Response functions are calculated at the same time as the full radiative transfer equation for polarized light is integrated, which determines values of many free parameters in a reasonable computation time. SIR demonstrates high stability, accuracy, and uniqueness of results, even when simulated observations present signal-to-noise ratios of the order of the lowest acceptable values in real observations.