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install_* requires user to have pdftex if package has a vignette #173

garrettgman opened this Issue Oct 16, 2012 · 5 comments


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garrettgman commented Oct 16, 2012

This might be something you guys want to think about. When a person runs install_github (and maybe other install_*'s), devtools retrieves a copy of the package, and then R builds and installs it on the user's machine.

If the package has an Sweave vignette, R build will try to find a program to compile the vignette and then error out if the user doesn't have one.

I'm guessing that a lot of R users won't have latex installed and won't be able to figure out the error message, which may make it harder to use install_github and github.


p.s. Also, I could be completely wrong about this :P


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garrettgman commented Oct 16, 2012

We should attempt to detect if pdftex is available, and if not, don't try and install vignettes. - Hadley


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hadley commented Dec 12, 2012

Check for Sys.which("pdflatex")


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hadley commented Dec 14, 2012

And pass --no-manual, --no-vignettes to build and check.


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bbolker commented Dec 15, 2012

one quick thought: is specifying quick=TRUE a temporary workaround for this issue?


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wch commented Dec 16, 2012

@bbolker no, quick=TRUE presently doesn't affect vignette building. The vignettes are built during the build phase, not the install phase, and quick=TRUE only affects the install phase.

@wch wch closed this in 48eb7b9 Dec 16, 2012

wch added a commit that referenced this issue Dec 16, 2012

Merge pull request #216 from wch/no-vignette
build: if pdflatex not present, don't build vignettes. Fixes #173

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