Using zip format for help pages, examples, etc.

Prof Brian Ripley Prof Brian Ripley <>
Fri, 26 Mar 1999 15:11:16 +0000 (GMT)

> From: Jonathan Rougier <>
> On Fri, 26 Mar 1999, Martyn Plummer wrote:
> > The problem isn't that the help files take up a lot of space,
> > but that certain file systems are extremely inefficient in
> > the use of that space.
> This is probably an unrealistic suggestion, but if compression is less of
> a problem than the number of files, why not take the help files `onboard'
> by creating a new class of objects with mode "help", which would be lists
> with components much like the current .Rd files, and attach them at the
> bottom of the search list.  Each library would then require just a single
> file of help objects.

But then loading a `package' would take longer and use much more memory,
and memory in R is precious.

We have talked about concatenating the help/R-ex files into a single
file per package, and indexing it, but the zip file route avoids some
of the work and helps with compression too.

Brian D. Ripley,        
Professor of Applied Statistics,
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272860 (secr)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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