Re: [Rd] Unable to build with working iconv support on Solaris9/x86

From: Professor Brian Ripley <>
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2007 07:04:17 +0100

Note that as the R-admin says, you need to use a better iconv than that supplied with most commercial Unices, including Solaris.

You can use GNU libiconv in either of two ways:

If you have two libraries with the same entry point (iconv here) which one gets resolved to is pretty arcane. Hence the need for a prefix.

I have used both routes on Solaris 10 and 8: the CSW libs use the second, for example. The preload route is pretty and can be applied to an existing executable.

Lucas Barbuto wrote:
> Hi all,
> Have had a frustrating time trying to get R 2.5.1 running happily on
> Solaris9/x86, the problems seem to stem mainly from libiconv
> support. After a couple of hours of experimenting, I came across the
> following combination, note that iconv (the program, but not the
> library) exists in the Solaris base system, I've manually installed
> the full GNU distribution in /usr/local/apps/libiconv-1.11 but not
> in /usr/local yet.
> CFLAGS="-I/usr/local/apps/libiconv-1.11/include -I/usr/local/include"
> LDFLAGS="-L/usr/local/apps/libiconv-1.11/lib -R/usr/local/apps/
> libiconv-1.11/lib -L/usr/local/lib -R/usr/local/lib" ./configure --
> prefix=/usr/local/apps/r-2.5.1 --with-libiconv-prefix=/usr/local/apps/
> libiconv-1.11
> Note that the option --with-libiconv-prefix=/usr/local/apps/
> libiconv-1.11 won't get me past the configure phase by itself (fails
> the iconv test), in fact as far as I can tell --with-libiconv-prefix
> has no effect at all but I've been leaving it in just in case.

Right, and you fail the same test below.

> Anyway, with the environment variables CFLAGS and LDFLAGS set as
> above, the process gets through configure and make successfully, but
> fails 'make check' trying to do a conversion to "latin1"
> > ## x is intended to be in latin1
> > x <- "fa\xE7ile"
> > Encoding(x)
> [1] "unknown"
> > Encoding(x) <- "latin1"
> > x
> [1]Error: unsupported conversion
> Execution halted
> ldd -s bin/exec/R confirms that R gets it's iconv from /usr/local/
> apps/libiconv-1.11/lib/ as expected

All that confirms is that you are linking to that DSO.

> ldd -s bin/exec/R
> [snip]
> find; required by bin/exec/R
> search path=/usr/local/apps/libiconv-1.11/lib:/usr/local/lib:/
> usr/local/apps/gcc-3.4.5/lib/gcc/i386-pc-solaris2.9/3.4.5 (RPATH
> from file bin/exec/R)
> trying path=/usr/local/apps/libiconv-1.11/lib/
> => /usr/local/apps/libiconv-1.11/lib/
> [snip]
> I don't know what else to try. Anyone?
> Regards,
> --
> Lucas Barbuto E:
> System Administrator T: +613 8344 1270
> Department of CSSE
> The University of Melbourne
> ______________________________________________
> mailing list

Brian D. Ripley,        
Professor of Applied Statistics,
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272866 (PA)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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