[ESS] help in R 2.10 Windows

Ross Boylan ross at biostat.ucsf.edu
Mon Nov 2 23:57:03 CET 2009

On Mon, 2009-11-02 at 23:19 +0100, Martin Maechler wrote:
> Hi Ross
> (and everyone else).
> In the "development version" of ESS (in 'svn' / subversion)
> I have committed changes that should fix this problem persistently.
> I'd be glad if you could try out the new (unreleased) version of ESS
> and confirm that my changes fix the problem.
> You can get the Windows-zip file
>   ftp://stat.ethz.ch/U/maechler/ESS/ess-5.6.zip
> which you need to unpack at the appropriate place,
> or possibly only use its ./lisp/ subdirectory instead of the installed
> ./ess/ one..

The out of the box behavior is what I want (help in emacs).

inferior-ess-help-command is "help(\"%s\", htmlhelp=FALSE)\n"
which is still using the obsolescent argument htmlhelp.

I'm not entirely sure I'm picking of the new code; the ESS version still
says 5.5.  I did restart emacs.

I also just (re)discovered that my .emacs file had
(setq inferior-ess-r-help-command "help(\"%s\", htmlhelp=TRUE)\n")
so my previous results need to be interpreted in that light.  Previous
discussion seemed to indicate setting the variable was irrelevant in ESS
5.5.  For tests reported in this message I commented out the setting.

Also, I reported previously a long delay getting help to pop up in a
browser.  I get the same delay on the initial launch of R inside ESS.
That supports the theory that my virus scanner is getting in the way.

> Best regards,
> Martin Maechler
> On Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 22:08, Ross Boylan <ross at biostat.ucsf.edu> wrote:
> > On Mon, 2009-11-02 at 12:40 -0800, Ross Boylan wrote:
> >> I'm using R 2.10 on Windows XP with ESS 5.5.
> >>
> >> Since the previous discussion indicates startup scripts are problematic
> >> for setting help, I set inferior-ess-help-command to "help(\"%s\",
> >> help_type=\"text\")".
> >>
> >> After this, when I use ? the system hangs until I do ctl-g.  When I then
> >> do ctl-c ctl-c the help text prints out in the main *R* buffer.
> >>
> >> I wanted text mostly because it took too long to get the help into the
> >> browser (MSIE), even after the browser was opened.
> >>
> >> Then I changed the help command to
> >>  "help(\"%s\", help_type=\"html\")",
> >> hoping at least to avoid the "htmlhelp is deprecated" warnings that
> >> appeared as if they were regular ess help buffers.
> >>
> >> However, I still have to type at least ctl-g and enter to get the help
> >> to appear in the browser.
> >>
> > And then I noticed that the original strings had \n at the end.  By
> > adding that, the first variant works (help inside of Emacs in a separate
> > buffer).  If I get help on a command I already got htmlhelp for I see
> > the old text buffer; ordinarily that would be the right thing to do.  In
> > my case I see
> > Warning message:
> > In help("intervals", htmlhelp = TRUE) :
> >  htmhelp = TRUE is deprecated: use help_type ="html"
> > Killing the old buffer cleans things up.
> >
> > That still leaves the problem of how to make the setting persistent so I
> > don't need to set the variable each session.  I'm not sure if the
> > previous thread on help implies I can set something in .Rprofile or not.
> >
> > Ross
> >
> > ______________________________________________
> > ESS-help at stat.math.ethz.ch mailing list
> > https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/ess-help
> >
> >

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