Re: [Rd] upgrading an R installation to next versoin

From: Dirk Eddelbuettel <>
Date: Thu 30 Jun 2005 - 13:32:32 GMT

Duncan Murdoch <murdoch <at>> writes:
> On 6/30/2005 8:10 AM, Gabor Grothendieck wrote:
> > When I install a new version of R (Windows XP) I have to:
> >
> > 1. copy my rw....\etc\ file to the new installation

Same here, and I also change one or two things in etc/Rconsole. It would be nice if we could tell to keep 'site-wide' config files outside of $R_HOME (which is always version-number challenged, ie. the path changes four times a year [ assuming two regular releases with one patch releases each, as has been the norm lately ] ).

So just as I can set R_LIBS in ~/.Renviron to point to my library directory, would it make sense to add, say, R_ETC ?

> > 2. copy the rw....\share\texmf files to the tex subfolder of the
> > miktex root directory and then refresh the miktex name database
> > (I have a batch file that does this for me which I run
> > whenever I install a new version of R.)

I have no issues with the tetex installation in Cygwin.

> > 3. setup the shortcut key using 'properties' on my R desktop icon so
> > that ctrl-alt-R brings up the new rather than the old R. (This one
> > really had me confused once since I did not realize I was still
> > using the old version of R after installing the new one.)

I ignore the icons, so I don't care. But I always need to update my softlink farm in /usr/local/bin for R, Rgui, Rterm, Rcmd.

> > 4. reinstall the packages I use or else setup etc\ with
> > an R_LIBS to point to include the old library or perhaps one can
> > copy the libraries over being careful not to overwrite new versions
> > of the standard libraries.
> >
> > Many other windows program automatically transfer the settings when
> > you upgrade them.
> >
> > I wonder if the installation process could optionally transfer
> > such settings from an old installation to a new one to make it
> > easier to install R.

As Duncan mentioned, this one is easy to take care of. I use

in ~/.Renviron, and that directory is outside of / parallel to where I install the different R versions.

One idea I had was if we could ask the installer to (optionally) adopt a scheme different from rwXXXX/ and to simple use something like Rcurrent/, with an optional renaming of the previous R installation to Rprevious. That way, Gabor's desktop icon doesn't need to change, nor do my softlinks in /usr/local/bin have to be adapted, as they always point into Rcurrent/bin/ .

I am probably overlooking something. But in case I don't, would anybody else see merit in this scheme?

Regards, Dirk mailing list Received on Fri Jul 01 10:20:29 2005

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