[R] Building 'R' from source for Windows.

Peter Dalgaard p.dalgaard at biostat.ku.dk
Sat Aug 15 09:08:41 CEST 2009

rkevinburton at charter.net wrote:
> I know I am going to catch alot of comments for this question but I am really stuck. If there is some written documentation that I have missed please redirect me.
> I want to build 'R' from source on a Windows Platform. The main reasons are that I want to check out a debugging some existing packages so I need to build with debug symbols and I want to check out a 64-bit version of 'R'. So I read the instuructions and downloaded and installed 'rtools' and extracted the source. Then I ran into this statement in R-admin.pdf:
>> Open a command window at ‘R_HOME/src/gnuwin32’. Edit ‘MkRules’ to set the >appropriate paths as needed and to set the type(s) of help that you want built. >Beware: ‘MkRules’ contains tabs and some editors (e.g., WinEdt) silently remove >them. Then run make all recommended and sit back and wait while the basic >compile takes place.
> But when I go to this directory I don't see MkRules. In fact I don't see any files, just folders (bitmap and unicode). Are the instructions wrong ? Have I missed a step? Or is there somewhere I can retrieve the missing file (MkRules)?
> Thank you. 
> Kevin

It should be there. Three possibilities:

- Your editor is not showing it because of extension issues (look for 
"All files")

- You are misinterpreting R_HOME as something other than the source 
directory. (Could this be a typo? R_HOME is usually the destination dir, 
but source is what makes sense here. Or are the instructions assuming 

- You unpacked it incorrectly or got the wrong source file. I checked 
http://cran.r-project.org/src/base/R-2/R-2.9.1.tar.gz and it does have 
the file in the right place.

    O__  ---- Peter Dalgaard             Øster Farimagsgade 5, Entr.B
   c/ /'_ --- Dept. of Biostatistics     PO Box 2099, 1014 Cph. K
  (*) \(*) -- University of Copenhagen   Denmark      Ph:  (+45) 35327918
~~~~~~~~~~ - (p.dalgaard at biostat.ku.dk)              FAX: (+45) 35327907

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