[R] R for various ports of linux

Ben Bolker bolker at zoo.ufl.edu
Wed Nov 5 23:29:05 CET 2003

  I've always built from source and almost never had to do anything beyond 
"tar zxf sources.tgz; ./configure; make; make install" (on various Red Hat 
versions).  On the other hand ... I've been hoping to move in the 
direction of an apt- or rpm-based solution to get a better handle on 
tracking package versions etc. etc. across multiple machines ...  It does 
seem as though the Debian folks (Eddelbuettel [sp]?) are very quick about 
packaging apt versions ...


On Thu, 6 Nov 2003, Jason Turner wrote:

> Nathan Leon Pace, MD, MStat wrote:
> > To all:
> > 
> > I currently download the R binaries for Redhat 7.x Linux.
> > 
> > There is considerable turmoil in the vendors of Linux. Redhat apparently 
> > is changing it's business model to paid versions.
> > 
> > This might motivate my department to use a different vendor of Linux.
> > 
> > Is there anything predictable about which vendors/versions of Linux will 
> > have R binaries in the future?
> Short answer: build from source.  You won't regret it.
> Long answer:
> The "build from source" approach is remarkably painless under any Linux 
> distribution I've tried (RH, SuSE, Slackware, et. al.).  It's also 
> painless under Solaris.
> The days of having to be a programmer to build R from source have been 
> over for years.  If you're computer literate enough to use R, you're 
> probably over-qualified to build from sources.
> Kudos to R-core for their attention to detail in making what's 
> complicated "under the hood" quite simple for the end user.
> Alternate answer:
> If you absolutely must have binaries, there will be binaries as long as 
> there are users of your OS with time they wish to commit to building 
> them.  This may be where your sysadmin steps in :)
> Cheers
> Jason

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Zoology Department, University of Florida    http://www.zoo.ufl.edu/bolker
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