[Rd] R 3.0.1: wrong MD5 checksums for Windows?

Duncan Murdoch murdoch.duncan at gmail.com
Sat May 18 23:37:54 CEST 2013

On 13-05-17 2:01 PM, Tal Galili wrote:
> Hello dear R-devel,
> I am not sure if this issue is tracked or not, but in case it isn't:
> It appears that R 3.0.1 reproduces the error reported for R 3.0.0 here:
> http://r.789695.n4.nabble.com/R-3-0-0-wrong-MD5-checksums-for-Windows-td4663348.html
> That is, that when installing R 3.0.1 on Windows 7, and then running:
> require(tools)
> checkMD5sums(dir=R.home())
> It produces the error:
> files ‘etc/Rconsole’, ‘etc/Rprofile.site’ have the wrong MD5 checksums
> [1] FALSE

Technically speaking, that's just a message, not an error.  Those files 
were changed by the installer, so the information is correct.

 From a user point of view, it does look like an error.  We could avoid 
the message in several ways:  don't bother checking those files, or 
compute the MD5 checksums on default installed versions of those files, 
or recompute the checksums after installation.

I think the third choice is too hard, so it's not something I'd do.

I don't know which of the other two is better.  A malicious attacker 
could do a lot of damage by messing with the Rprofile.site file; maybe a 
user would want to know if that had happened.  So that suggests the 
second choice.  But then users who don't choose whatever default the 
installer picks will always get the message.

Duncan Murdoch

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