[R]Running R remotely in Windows Environment?

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Thu Jan 29 08:53:33 CET 2004

On Wed, 28 Jan 2004, Jim Porzak wrote:

> We are considering setting up a fast, RAM loaded machine as an "R-server" 
> to handle the big problems not suitable for individual desktops and, also, 
> to process ad hoc analysis requests via our portal. We are 99% a Windows 
> shop, so first choice is a windows server. We'll use (D)COM for the portal 
> interface and understand that.
> What has me stumped is how to easily interface individual analyst's Windows 
> desktops to the R-server. I haven't seen anything in the archives, but I 
> can't imagine this hasn't been done. What am I missing?

R is not designed to be client-server on Windows.  People I know who do
this use Windows Terminal Server or Citrix.

I would question the value of this approach.  Unless you propose to run
64-bit Windows, a `RAM loaded' machine isn't `loaded', and R under Windows
handles large amounts of memory much less effectively than under Linux.  
64-bit Windows is uncharted territory for R, whereas 64-bit Unix/Linux is
well trodden.

Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley at 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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