Re: [Rd] R CMD build when the package name is different from the directory name

From: Arne Henningsen <>
Date: Fri 29 Sep 2006 - 06:26:26 GMT

Dear Seth,

Thank you for your message.

On Thursday 28 September 2006 16:22, Seth Falcon wrote:
> Arne Henningsen <> writes:
> > Hi,
> >
> > I was really happy when I saw that in R version 2.3.0 "R CMD check" works
> > for packages whose package name is different from the directory name in
> > which it is located (see
> > Now, I can have branches of my packages in directories like
> > "[...]/branches/<version number>/", while I had to use
> > "[...]/branches/<version number>/<package name>" before.
> > "R CMD check <version number>" runs as expected but when I build the
> > package with "R CMD build <version number>", the file name of the source
> > package is "<version number>_<version number>-<patch level>.tar.gz" (and
> > not "<package name>_<version number>-<patch level>.tar.gz"). Furthermore
> > the base directory inside the .tar.gz archive is "<version number>" (and
> > not "<package name>").
> I think that's a feature. Note that R CMD INSTALL on such a package
> does install the package under its "real" name.

I don't think that this is a feature -- it is IMHO rather a bug. While "R CMD check" and "R CMD INSTALL" take the real name (as expected), "R CMD build" does not.

However, if I don't have to change the file name and the name of the base directory before uploading the package to CRAN, the current behaviour of "R CMD build" is IMHO acceptable. (I did not yet get an answer on my question regarding CRAN.)

> It is a feature because it allows me to distinguish the tarballs from
> each other.

You can distinguish the tarballs according their version number and patch level (they are called "<package name>-<version number>-<patch level>.tar.gz"

> Perhaps you can make this work for you by using a more meaningful
> description than version number in your branch name. For example:
> .../branches/foo-release
> .../branches/foo-devel
> .../branches/foo-someNewFeature

In this case, the file name of the package is e.g. "<package name>-release-<version number>-<patch level>.tar.gz" and the base directory is e.g.
"<package name>-release".

Is this accepted on CRAN?

> As another poster suggested, an SCM is the right tool for tracking
> versions.
> + seth


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Arne Henningsen
Department of Agricultural Economics
University of Kiel
Olshausenstr. 40
D-24098 Kiel (Germany)
Tel: +49-431-880 4445
Fax: +49-431-880 1397

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