[Rd] Rtools42 and included libraries

Tomas Kalibera tom@@@k@||ber@ @end|ng |rom gm@||@com
Mon Dec 20 12:05:24 CET 2021

On 12/17/21 8:32 PM, Winston Chang wrote:
> Rtools42 includes the pre-compiled libraries needed to build most CRAN
> packages. From the blog (
> https://developer.r-project.org/Blog/public/2021/12/07/upcoming-changes-in-r-4.2-on-windows/
> ):
>> Most of the required package changes were due to downloading incompatible
> pre-compiled libraries at installation time. Rtools42 includes libraries
> for almost all CRAN packages, which can and should be used, instead.
> Will these libraries be updated on a regular schedule? I'm wondering how to
> manage library updates in the future.

Yes, both the libraries and the toolchain will have to be updated. I've 
already done that several times when working on this.

In more detail:

The toolchain and libraries are built using MXE and if you need to 
update a library or add a new one, you would ideally send a pull request 
to MXE or file an issue there. See also "Adding/updating MXE package" in


After it is in upstream MXE, you would then ping the Rtools42 maintainer 
(now me) if it is a new library or if you need the update quickly. Time 
to time all MXE library updates will be merged into RTools42, which will 
include testing on CRAN packages and in some cases some R packages will 
have to be updated. The updates of upstream MXE packages happen as 
needed by various users, some are upgraded frequently (so you as R 
package author would not have to do anything), but not all.

There are also some updated/customized/added MXE packages used in 
Rtools42, not yet in upstream MXE. The amount of customization should be 
minimal and R packages should be written to work with the configuration 
choices made by MXE, as they work with the choices made by various Linux 
distributions and macOS recipes. If there  was a significant problem 
with the MXE configuration choices, one should file an issue to MXE.  
Still, in the case when the review of an upstream pull request was 
taking too long, particularly MXE library updates or additions could be 
ale made only for Rtools42. If you need to update an MXE package that is 
in this "custom" set, you can send a patch to the Rtools42 maintainer, 
and of course if you wanted to help getting that MXE package upstream, 
let me know.

In practice I expect some R package authors will need help with this and 
ask on R-devel (or R-pkg-devel).


> -Winston
> 	[[alternative HTML version deleted]]
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