[R] Modyfing PATH in Windows Installer for R

Chris Jackson chris.jackson at imperial.ac.uk
Mon Dec 6 15:34:01 CET 2004

Henrik Andersson wrote:
> Just a small suggestion since Windows have a file system not designed 
> for command line use...
> Would it be possible to add the possibility of automatically 
> adding/modifying the path to the R executables in the windows installer 
> program?

After asking the same question on R-devel a few months ago, I
investigated the possibility.  This would be useful to me, as it saves
the trouble of modifying the path every time a new version of R comes

As far as I could tell, the installer that R for Windows uses
(InnoSetup) cannot modify the PATH out of the box, but it can do this
via a third-party add-on script.   I was doubtful whether it was worth
adding such a script to the R sources, given the small benefit obtained.

The ideal solution seems to be what's done in Mac OS X, that is, to
store a permanent path to the current R version as a symlink, and then
just changing where the symlink points to when R is upgraded.
Unfortunately Windows doesn't do symlinks.

(probably a little esoteric for R-help)
Christopher Jackson <chris.jackson at imperial.ac.uk>, Research Associate,
Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Imperial College
School of Medicine, Norfolk Place, London W2 1PG, tel. 020 759 43371

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