[Bioc-devel] Would it make sense for BiocManager::install to cache downloaded packages?

Keith Hughitt ke|th@hugh|tt @end|ng |rom gm@||@com
Wed Nov 4 18:17:36 CET 2020

Sometimes I will go to update a machine / do a clean Bioconductor install
and a large number of packages will need to be downloaded.

If something goes wrong during the installation, which is not uncommon in
cases where the number of packages being installed is large, then the
process has to be restarted and the packages re-downloaded all-over again.

Often, it may take some trial-and-error to fix the problem preventing the
install from completing, the result of which is that you may end up
re-downloading 50+ packages several times.

Would it perhaps make sense for BiocManager to download packages/checksums
to somewhere like "~/.cache/bioc/pkg" so that they could be re-used during
future installs?

Obviously, it would be good for BiocManger to have some ability to suggest
old packages for removal (e.g. outdated/haven't been used in a long time)
to avoid filling up people's hard-drives.

Another possibility would be to build on top of the work done by renv,
which already has a very nice caching system.

In any case, it seems like it would be something (relatively)
straight-forward to implement that would save a lot of bandwidth and time
for users.

Just a thought..

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