Michael Lapsley mlapsley at
Wed May 24 09:55:00 CEST 2000

Dear R-fans,

My database access package RODBC is now available on CRAN.
For those who have never used it, odbc is a database and
platform independant API which provides an SQL interface
to a large number of database engines.  The databases supported
include not only SQL based RDBMS but also CSV files, foxbase,
dBase, MSExcel etc.

ODBC has been promoted mainly by Microsoft and this is where the
driver support is most widespread and solid.  Unix support is
available (free) for some of the more common database engines.

To my knowledge RODBC works with oracle, MSAccess, Sybase,
DB2 and SQLServer on MSWindows platforms, and with
MySQL, postgreSQL and oracle (with a slightly buggy
beta driver) under unix.  With access to the server I
have been able to use it with MSAccess from unix as well by
installing (free) bridging software.

SQL itself is very easy to learn and use in the context of
selecting data from a single table; a rather contrived search will look
like 'SELECT col1,col2,col3 from MYTABLE where col1 > 999 and col2 = 'exact
match' and col3 like '%wildcard match%'

There are a number of convenience functions in the package to wrap up
some of the more common usages of saving and retrieving dataframes.

Please keep me posted with bug reports and suggestions.


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