[R-SIG-Mac] hang on use of ESC in R 2.6.2

Simon Urbanek simon.urbanek at r-project.org
Tue Feb 12 15:29:05 CET 2008

[I have replied privately, but here is the relevant part of the  
response for the list:]

If R is stuck in a long computation in C code that doesn't call  
R_ProcessEvents, we're helpless. There is no way to stop that code  
until it finishes. Even if you press <Esc> it may not help (just give  
you the beachball), because the event of you pressing <Esc> must first  
be processed so it can fire, but if R is already somewhere in a C  
code, so it will never get processed, hence the beachball (on OS X the  
beachball means that the application doesn't process events for some  

Now, you can debug this if you desire so to find out what R is doing.  
To do so, start a Terminal (in parallel to your unresponsive R) and  
attach R

That should get you into the R process that is spinning. Now you can  
to see where it really is. Very likely it will be somewhere is the  
package performing the computation. But if it's not, then we want to  

Anyway, I suspect that this is not really something we can do much  
about (in the current GUI). The new GUI 2.0 is running R in a separate  
thread, so it is always responsive despite R being busy, hence we can  
deal better with unresponsive R there.


On Feb 10, 2008, at 10:53 AM, Ken Knoblauch wrote:

> Hi,
> I notice with R 2.6.2 on a powerpc and on a MacBook Pro that if I  
> hit ESC to
> annul running a line in the GUI, input hangs with the spinning beach  
> ball
> for an indefinite period of time.  I haven't tried to see how long  
> it will
> hang, but
> it is at least several minutes too long.  Checking Force Quit  
> indicates that
> R is not responding.
> On the power pc, w/ Tiger (but the same thing happens on my Intel  
> Mac w/
> Leopard)
> sessionInfo()
> R version 2.6.2 (2008-02-08)
> powerpc-apple-darwin8.10.1
> locale:
> en_US.UTF-8/en_US.UTF-8/en_US.UTF-8/C/en_US.UTF-8/en_US.UTF-8
> attached base packages:
> [1] stats     graphics  grDevices utils     datasets  methods   base
> Thanks.
> best,
> Ken
> -- 
> Ken Knoblauch
> Inserm U846
> Institut Cellule Souche et Cerveau
> Département Neurosciences Intégratives
> 18 avenue du Doyen Lépine
> 69500 Bron
> France
> tel: +33 (0)4 72 91 34 77
> fax: +33 (0)4 72 91 34 61
> portable: +33 (0)6 84 10 64 10
> http://www.sbri.fr
> _______________________________________________
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