[Rd] BLAS / LAPACK version information from within R-session?

Jason Riedy jason at acm.org
Tue Jul 10 19:58:45 CEST 2007

And Brian Ripley writes:
> I know of no way to ask a BLAS dynamic library what version it
> is.

Tinkering with the BLAS interface hasn't fared so well, but
LAPACK 3.1 added an ILAVER subroutine that returns the major,
minor, and patch level versions for LAPACK itself.

>> An obvious application could be safety-checks for packages
>> like Matrix and quantreg at load / attach - time.
> Why should that be needed?

To warn of bugs in specific LAPACK versions, perhaps.  I know I
let a couple of embarassing typos merge into 3.1.0 with the
eigenvalue drivers.  The ones I know of so far only affect
performance, but there may be another that leads to an unreported
error.  Looks like R makes DSYEVR available through eigen.R, so
it's affected.  Sorry.

And I know prior LAPACK versions have some painful error cases.
They seem to impact few people, so having the LAPACK version in
related bug reports may help remove those causes.

>> Perhaps this information may even be included into the output
>> of R.Version() :-) ?
> I can think of more worthy candidates, e.g. the compilers used
> to build R, and for Linux something more precise about the
> distro used.

Alas, yes, those could be very useful with the resurgence of
funny arithmetics.


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