Step Two: Get to know your Windows System

In order to build a package in R there are a couple things you need to understand about your Windows System. These are fairly trivial but if your coming from a different platform (like MAC) then you might not know where these things are. I will take  some time to take you to a couple places on your Windows system. There are three bits that we are going to get familiar with:  The location of your R program, the console application, and the PATH variable.

Where is R?  If you’ve done a standard install of R, then your R program should be in your Programs folder. On my system it looks like this:

The R folder

And as you see I have R 2.13 selected. We are going to navigate down through that folder until we get down to the bottom:

 The R 2.13 Folder

And I’ve selected the “bin” folder and in that folder we find

R 2.13 Executeables

And the we  finally arrive at the bottom

Location of Rcmd

So at this level we find the program that we will have to invoke to build a package. That program is Rcmd.   The other thing we need to note here is that when we  want to access this program we have to provide the system information about the location of this program. That is, we need to record the path to this program. the path to the program is : c:\Program Files\R\R-2.13.0\bin\x64 . Please note that on your system it may be different.

Next, we are going to locate the console application. You find this application by going to your start button in the lower left hand corner of your screen

Open the start button select “All Programs” –>”Accessories” –>”Command Prompt”.  The old reliable “DOS” Prompt.

The bit of the windows we have to track down is the PATH Variable. Again, this is an environmental variable that the windows system uses to locate programs and insure that commands get interpreted correctly. To locate your PATH variable Start by clicking on the Start button. At the start panel select the control panel

Next Select system and security

Next select System

Next on your left select Advanced system Settings

At the bottom select Environmental variables

In the lower Panel select the “Path Variable” and select Edit

That is how you will access your path variable when it comes time to edit it.

You are now ready to move on to Step Three which is located here

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