[R] gsub: replacing slashes in a string

Joe Ceradini joeceradini at gmail.com
Wed Sep 14 18:25:07 CEST 2016

Hi all,

There are many R help posts out there dealing with slashes in gsub. I
understand slashes are "escape characters" and thus need to be treated
differently, and display differently in R. However, I'm still stuck on
find-replace problem, and would appreciate any tips. Thanks!

GOAL: replace all "\\" with "/", so when export file to csv all slashes are
the same.

(test <- c("8/24/2016", "8/24/2016", "6/16/2016", "6\\16\\2016"))

Lengths are all the same, I think (?) because of how R displays/deals with
slashes. However, when I export this to a csv, e.g., there are still double
slashes, which is a problem for me.

Change direction of slashes - works.
(test2 <- gsub("\\", "//", test, fixed = TRUE))

Now lengths are now not the same....

Change from double to single - does not work. Is this because it actually
is a single slash but R is just displaying it as double? Regardless, when I
export from R the double slashes do appear.
gsub("////", "//", test2, fixed = TRUE)
gsub("////", "//", test2)
gsub("////////", "////", test2, fixed = TRUE)
gsub("////////", "////", test2)

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