Re: [Rd] parallel build for package? (equivalent of make -j8)

From: Prof Brian Ripley <>
Date: Mon, 01 Dec 2008 10:26:03 +0000 (GMT)

On Mon, 1 Dec 2008, Uwe Ligges wrote:

> Peter Dalgaard wrote:
>> Whit Armstrong wrote:
>>> I have a package that takes about 20 minutes to compile which tends to
>>> prolong the compile/test/compile cycle.
>>> Does anyone know how to get R CMD check or R CMD INSTALL to use parallel
>>> make?
>>> I looked at R CMD INSTALL --help, but I don't see anything obvious
>>> arguments to do this.
>> Platform?
>> Does
>> MAKE="make -j8" R CMD INSTALL ...
>> not work?
> I cannot believe this works safely, at least when installing into the same
> library, because of R's lock mechanism that locks a library if *one*
> installation is running ...

It does say 'package' (singular). It you know what you are doing you can switch off the locking (and you also need to worry about installing dependencies in the right order, at least for source installs).

I don't see the issue though: if you run R CMD INSTALL on a package directory (rather than a tarball), 'make' will only re-make the compiled code whose sources have changed. Or is 'compile' being used loosely for 'install' (and even so it is rare for the bits that are always done, e.g. dumping R code, to take long).

> Best,
> Uwe
>> (Beware: Here there be Tygers. Parallel makes have their surprises....)
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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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