[Rd] Interactiveness

Bjarni Juliusson bjarni at Update.UU.SE
Tue Dec 11 15:43:07 CET 2007

Hi list!

I'm developing R integration for a project called Bioclipse at Uppsala 
University. The current implementation works by simply forking an R and 
sending it text (with some substitutions on it) down a pipe, getting the 
printed output back up another pipe. This of course works fine, except 
it runs into one problem: R finds a pipe on its stdin and decides to be 
"non-interactive", which means that as soon as the user makes a typo and 
causes an error, R exits.

I checked the source, and it's a couple of isatty()'s in the two files 
named system.c that are doing it. They are of course intended to be a 
feature, but in this case it causes us trouble. Would it be possible to 
get a command line switch to control this behaviour? I'm not sure pseudo 
terminals can be used portably, or can they? Are those few lines with 
the isatty's, which set R_Interactive to FALSE, the only places that 
need to be patched (besides adding the switch somewhere)? Should I send 
in a complete patch or is a request for functionality sufficient?

Lots of questions there, grateful for any answers! :-)


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