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packagedocs provides a mechanism for simple generation and automated deployment of nice-looking online R package documentation that plugs into the traditional R package vignette system. Example for this package here.


  • All documentation is generated from a single RMarkdown file, "vignettes/docs.Rmd"
  • Documentation is nicely styled and responsive for mobile viewing with a collapsible auto-scrolling table of contents
  • Simple Github / TravisCI hooks for automatically building and deploying documentation to your github pages branch after each commit
  • Github pages branch is stomped on each commit to prevent repository bloat
  • Once configured, any commits pushed to the master branch of repository will have docs made automatically available at
  • Valid R vignettes are generated that point to the live version of the docs
  • Support for lazy rendering of htmlwidget outputs, useful when embedding several visualizations in a vignette
  • Automatic generation of all R object and function documentation, called the "function reference"
  • Examples in the function reference are evaluated and the output, including graphics, is rendered inline with the documentation
  • The function reference can be organized into groups with custom headings using a yaml configuration file
  • A convenience function is provided for linking references to functions in your vignette directly to the associated function documentation on the generated function reference page
  • Helper functions to initialize, run, and set up your docs for Github deployment




There are three main functions.

To initialize your packagedocs documentation:

# in current package directory

This will create some files in your package's "vignettes" directory. Edit "vignettes/docs.Rmd" and to generate your vignettes, run:


To set up your repository to automatically build and deploy to your github pages branch on every commit:


More detail about how to use these is found in the package's documentation.


This package has gone through several iterations, and was heavily influenced and borrows from Hadley Wickham's staticdocs (now pkgdown) package.