[R] Upgrade 'R'

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Tue Sep 2 12:39:57 CEST 2008

On Tue, 2 Sep 2008, Keith Jewell wrote:

> As possible help to others, and also as a request for comments on how I
> might do things better, I describe how I've recently altered my system to
> handle this.
> I'm on a Windows Server 2003 network and the R installation is accessible to
> many others. Everyone has "read" access to all installation files, but only
> I have write access. I do _not_ have Administrator privileges on the server,
> so I cannot make/change registry entries.
> R versions are in an R folder tree, which also holds the version independent
> library folder.
> //Server02/stats/R
> //Server02/stats/R/R-2.7.0
> //Server02/stats/R/R-2.7.1
> //Server02/stats/R/R-2.7.1pat
> //Server02/stats/R/R-2.7.2
>   :
> //Server02/stats/R/library
> In each version I have edited /etc/Rprofile.site to include the line
> .libPaths("//Server02/stats/R/library")
> The "default" libraries (base, boot, class...) are installed into the
> relevant version specific .../R-n.n.n/library/ folder by the windows
> installer program (e.g. R-2.7.2-win32.exe).
> Occasionaly, and after installing a new R-version,  I update all the
> downloaded libraries in the version independent //Server02/stats/R/library/
> folder with a simple update.packages().
> HTH. Comments welcome.

Please read the rw-FAQ for more details and insight, especially in using 
Renviron.site (here you want to set R_LIBS_SITE: see ?libPaths) and using 
update.packages(checkBuilt=TRUE, ask=FALSE)

For example, my sysadmins have Windows R installed locally (via the MSI 
installer), and then have on each machine in etc/Renviron.site have


This allows both common packages and user-specific packages to be stored 
on SMB-mounted drives.  (N: is common to all machines, P: is 'personal' 
-- we use mapped drives rather than shares to allow quick changes of 

There are two reasons we install locally.  The first is performance: if 20 
machines in a lab start R up simultaneously the network load is high.  The 
second is that our security settings (and I believe the defaults these 
days) disallow use of CHM help on network drives -- we remove the chtml 
directories from packages installed on R_LIBS_SITE, so R defaults to text 
help for those packages.

> Keith Jewell
> ---------------------------------------
> "Leon Yee" <yee.leon at gmail.com> wrote in message
> news:48BCA225.7060106 at gmail.com...
>> Hello, Kevin
>>    You can get some hints by browsing in this mailist with the subject of
>> " Upgrading R means I lose my packages", which were posted several days
>> ago.
>> HTH
>> Leon
>> rkevinburton at charter.net wrote:
>>> More and more I am getting warnings from packages that I install that the
>>> package was built with 2.7.2 (I am running 2.7.1). I would like to
>>> upgrade but don't want to loose all of the packages that I have installed
>>> and the settings. Is there a way to just "upgrade" without uninstalling
>>> and reinstalling 'R'?
>>> Thank you.
>>> Kevin
> ______________________________________________
> R-help at r-project.org mailing list
> https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help
> PLEASE do read the posting guide http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html
> and provide commented, minimal, self-contained, reproducible code.

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

More information about the R-help mailing list