[R-sig-Debian] rgl, openmesa, nvidia. Oh my!

Paul Johnson pauljohn32 at gmail.com
Tue Sep 22 19:46:16 CEST 2009

Solution below:

On Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 9:04 PM, Dirk Eddelbuettel <edd at debian.org> wrote:
> I use an older Nvidia NVS280 card to drive a dual-display setup.  For a few
> years now, I have simply relied on Ubuntu to 'Do the Right Thing' -- new
> kernel packages automagically re-build kernel modules etc pp.

Gosh, I wish  I had an old computer :)  Yes, on my systems that don't
lock up using the standard nvidia driver, all is well & good.

Works pretty
> well -- and with Ubuntu 9,04 I even got OpenGL on both displays so even
> Google Earth works. As does 'library(rgl); demo(rgl)'.  But that won't help
> you if you have issues with your card....

> | Here's the failure of the rgl install
> |
> | > install.packages("rgl")
> What is wrong with  "sudo apt-get install r-cran-rgl"  ?
> I have mainted rgl inside Debian / Ubuntu for a few years just because
> keeping track of OpenGL etc headers is tricky.
> For what it is worth, the package has these Build-Depends:
>        Build-Depends: debhelper (>= 5.0.0), r-base-dev (>= 2.9.2), cdbs,
>        libgl1-mesa-dev | libgl-dev, libglu1-mesa-dev | libglu-dev,
>        libpng12-dev, libx11-dev, libxt-dev, x11proto-core-dev
> so if you satisfy these you should be able to build the package ... as that
> is what the autobuilders do.

You gave me the hint I needed.  Here's the "fix". The nvidia devel
package (which seems to be required, if you read the documentation on
nvidia and opengl) has to be removed in order to install the mesa
package that has the libgl that rgl is looking for.

> sudo apt-get install libgl1-mesa-dev

That removes the nvidia development package while installing the
others, after that, rgl compiles.

I have been building these packages for years and it makes me feel
more confident they will work if I compile them with the libraries
that I actually have.  But I should not have so much pride.  Sooner or
later, everybody has to try r-cran-rgl !


Paul E. Johnson
Professor, Political Science
1541 Lilac Lane, Room 504
University of Kansas

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