[R] system shell emulation in R

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Thu Jun 24 20:28:25 CEST 2004

On Thu, 24 Jun 2004, Shin, Daehyok wrote:

> Rather than using system() to execute a shell command,
> is there a way to emulate the system shell itself in R?
> For instance, if the function is shell, 
> > getwd()
> [1] "/home/a/b"
> > shell()          # From R to system shell
> $cd ..              # cd command in system shell
> $CTRL+D	       # Return to R
> > getwd()
> [1] "/home/a"

system("/bin/sh") does this for you under a Unix-alike.  But as spawning a 
shell as cd-ing in the child does not change the working directory of the 
parent, the emulation would be imperfect if this worked in R.

Do try it in your favourite shell!

Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Professor of Applied Statistics,  http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/~ripley/
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272866 (PA)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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