still no SAS [forwarded message from Dale Steele]

Martin Maechler maechler at
Tue Jul 15 18:09:00 CEST 2008

>>>>> "DE" == Dirk Eddelbuettel <edd at>
>>>>>     on Tue, 15 Jul 2008 09:05:38 -0500 writes:

    DE> (added Dale back to CC's --Dirk)

    DE> On 14 July 2008 at 22:02, Martin Maechler wrote: | >>>>>
    DE> "DE" == Dirk Eddelbuettel <edd at> | >>>>> on
    DE> Sat, 12 Jul 2008 21:23:05 -0500 writes: | | DE> FYI --
    DE> Dale reported back that a test package I prepared | DE>
    DE> (based on current svn ie with my changes) did not work |
    DE> DE> for him.  I'm not sure how to fix this as I cannot
    DE> test | DE> this. From the looks, it should work -- | DE>
    DE> /usr/share/ess/etc is the defined location in | DE>
    DE> ess-site.el; and that is where the file now is...  | |
    DE> DE> Dirk | | Hi Dirk (etc), | | I'm back from vacation
    DE> as of this evening.  | Thanks a lot, Dirk for handling
    DE> things while I was offline!

    DE> Thanks for the follow-up!

    DE> | I've looked at the appended message from Dale Steele,
    DE> | and the messages he got look a bit suspicious,
    DE> effectly being | produced by code that I had added only
    DE> a copule of weeks / | months ago.  | | Maybe we
    DE> (ess-debian + D.Steele) can look at it again tomorrow or
    DE> so?  | I neither can test it properly; | on the other
    DE> hand you can always produce a simple sh-script | named
    DE> 'SAS' (or 'sas' ?) in your PATH to mimic things.

    DE> There definitely was a bug in the Debian (and Ubuntu)
    DE> package as we explicitly deleted Rich's old
    DE> ess-sas-sh-command at the Debian packaging level.  But
    DE> this is now taken care in SVN and a test .deb I prepared
    DE> that is at

    DE> However, this still didn't fly for Dale.  I would
    DE> appreciate it if someone (Martin ?) could maybe try to
    DE> sort this out with Dale off-line.  I am out of ideas on
    DE> this one.

Hi Dirk,
the next bug that seems to be somewhat debian-specific :

>From your *.deb {which I have now installed on an ubuntu 4.08 machine}
C-h v  ess-etc-directory 

 |   ess-etc-directory is a variable defined in `ess-site.el'.
 |   Its value is 
 |   "/usr/share/ess/etc"

whereas the code in essd-sas.el  assumes that ess-etc-directory
ends in a '/', and
our code in lisp/ess-site.el


(defvar ess-etc-directory nil
  "*Location of the ESS etc/ directory.
The ESS etc directory stores various auxillary files that are useful
for ESS, such as icons.")

(defvar ess-etc-directory-list
  '("../etc/ess/" "../etc/" "../../etc/ess/" "./etc/")
  "*List of directories, relative to `ess-lisp-directory', to search for etc.")

(while (and (listp ess-etc-directory-list) (consp ess-etc-directory-list))
  (setq ess-etc-directory
	(expand-file-name (concat ess-lisp-directory "/"
				  (car ess-etc-directory-list))))
  (if (file-directory-p ess-etc-directory)
      (setq ess-etc-directory-list nil)
    (setq ess-etc-directory nil)
    (setq ess-etc-directory-list (cdr ess-etc-directory-list))
    (when (null ess-etc-directory-list)
      (beep 0) (beep 0)
      (message (concat
		"Relative to ess-lisp-directory, one of the following must exist:\n"
		"../etc/ess, ../etc, ../../etc/ess or ./etc"))
      (sit-for 4))))


also makes sure that ess-etc-directory ends up with a  "/"

Of course, I can now blame the debian maintainers for not having
appended a '/', but I don't want to, since,
OTOH, I see that other ess-*-directory variables don't end in a "/"
and I think we (ESS-core) should be more rational in our coding
here  ---> CC'ing back to ESS-core.

In my (non-Debian, namely using my own "ESS-devel" !) setup, 
I have

ess-etc-directory       both ending in  '/'

ess-lisp-directory	both *not* ending in  '/'

ess-info-directory	is nil and seems absolutely superfluous (unused)
ess-directory		is nil but its documentation says that
			it must end in '/'

Stephen, do you know if there's offical Emacs coding "standards"
about this?


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