Re: [R] Error in X11(paste("png::", filename, sep = ""), width, height, pointsize unable to start device PNG

From: Prof Brian Ripley <ripley_at_stats.ox.ac.uk>
Date: Sat 31 Dec 2005 - 18:57:06 EST

Two comments:

  1. Marc did not suggest updating to FC4 but to Fedora. It makes a lot of sense to update RH8.0/9 systems to FC3 (which is what we have done) or RHEL4 or CentOS (which have a similar code base).
  2. A fully patched FC4 is indeed usable as Marc says, and some R-core members use it. R works well with gcc4.0.2/gfortran apart from a few issues reported in the R-admin manual. Almost all the problems with CRAN packages are related to gfortran: some are not legal Fortran 77, and others gfortran cannot compile or can only compile without optimization.

One thing that is dangerous on some architectures (notably x86_64 and ia64, also known from PPC) is to mix code compiled with gcc4 and gcc3 since the argument-passing conventions were changed. So I would start an FC4 installation afresh rather than do an upgrade even from FC3.

On Fri, 30 Dec 2005, Marc Schwartz wrote:

> On Sat, 2005-12-31 at 12:30 +1100, paul sorenson wrote:
>> Marc Schwartz wrote:
>>> ...
>>> On a side note, RH9 is a fairly dated and EOL'd distribution, with
>>> security updates and bug patches only provided by the Fedora Legacy
>>> folks (http://fedoralegacy.org). You should consider upgrading to Fedora
>>> in the near future (if you want to stay with RH), since the FL folks can
>>> drop support for RH9 at any time, leaving you vulnerable.
>>
>> Yes but also don't do this naively. You might find that gcc 4 breaks
>> some of your source compilations and IIRC this is the default compiler
>> if you install FC4 with the "install everything" option. I haven't
>> tried compiling R with gcc 4, this is just a general comment.
>
> I do know that Prof. Ripley, Peter Dalgaard and Martyn Plummer have
> spent a fair amount of time on this issue and there are notes in the
> R-admin manual regarding some of the gcc 4.x problems.
>
> There were also various discussions on r-devel and offlist over the past
> several months about these issues, later including Tom Callaway from Red
> Hat, who is the Fedora Extras package maintainer for the R offerings in
> those repos. These had to do with the various compiler, optimization
> flag and later BLAS/LAPACK issues.
>
> The current gcc version on a fully updated FC4 system is:
>
> $ gcc --version
> gcc (GCC) 4.0.2 20051125 (Red Hat 4.0.2-8)
>
> and I believe solves the prior issues related to 4.0.0. R compiles fine
> on my fully updated FC4 system and passes 'make check all' without
> error.

-- 
Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley@stats.ox.ac.uk
Professor of Applied Statistics,  http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/~ripley/
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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Received on Sat Dec 31 19:04:09 2005

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