[R-sig-Debian] 32 bit 64 bit question, ELFCLASS32 error

Dirk Eddelbuettel edd @end|ng |rom deb|@n@org
Mon Feb 1 15:32:05 CET 2021

On 1 February 2021 at 10:20, semih ozlem wrote:
| Hi everyone,
| On a usb with knoppix live uname -a gives the response

Wow. Blast from the past.

| Linux Microknoppix 5.3.5-64 #16 SMP PREEMPT Wed Oct 23 02:08:38 CEST 2019
| x86_64 GNU/Linux
| uname -i
| unknown
| I am trying to run a python script that uses R, and I am getting an error:
| OSError: cannot load library '/usr/lib/R/lib/libR.so':
| /usr/lib/R/lib/libR.so: wrong ELF class: ELFCLASS32
| When look at the directory /usr/lib/R/lib/, the file libR.so is listed
| there.
| When I look up on the internet what might be the cause of this, there is
| some indication about R being of 32 bit or 4 bit architecture. But I am not
| able to resolve the issue on my own completely.
| when R starts it states that the Platform is i686-pc-linux-gnu (32-bit)

So that would be 32 bit indeed.

| Does anyone have any idea why R is installed as 32-bit, and if and how can
| it be changed to 64-bit, and if this indeed is the cause of the problem I
| am facing.

You may need to get in touch with the person who made the bootable image you
use. I used to do these things and provide a Knoppix variant myself: it was
called Quantian with its site at http://quantian.org (and the site is still
up -- but also states no new content since 2006 (!!)).

If you just put the current Ubuntu installer on a bootable usb, it will also
allow you to install from it and have R and all that. 32 bit is on the way
out, newer Ubuntu distros no longer build it and I forget what we do over in

As what may be your real question: where do I in 2021 get a current bootable
usb with R: no idea, sorry.

Another related answer is that 32 and 64 bit _can_ coexist (as they do on
other OSs) but that never really took off in common use. So there may still
be way to use what you have but you may need to consult the specific


https://dirk.eddelbuettel.com | @eddelbuettel | edd using debian.org

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