[Rd] R 3.1.1 and 3.1.2 both fail their test suites

Martin Maechler maechler at stat.math.ethz.ch
Wed Nov 5 12:48:37 CET 2014

>>>>> Duncan Murdoch <murdoch.duncan at gmail.com>
>>>>>     on Mon, 3 Nov 2014 06:28:19 -0500 writes:

    > On 03/11/2014, 4:17 AM, Martin Maechler wrote:
    >>>>>>> Duncan Murdoch <murdoch.duncan at gmail.com>
    >>>>>>> on Sat, 1 Nov 2014 13:17:56 -0400 writes:
    >> > On 01/11/2014, 11:33 AM, Peter Simons wrote:
    >> >> Hi Uwe,
    >> >> 
    >> >> > Nobody in R core runs NixOS and can reproduce
    >> >> this. This passes on most > other platforms,
    >> >> apparently. If you can point us to a problem or send >
    >> >> patches, we'd appreciate it.
    >> >> 
    >> >> have tried running the test suite in a build that's
    >> >> configured with '--without-recommended-packages'? That's
    >> >> about the only unusual thing we do when building with
    >> >> Nix. Other than that, our build runs on a perfectly
    >> >> ordinary Linux -- and it used to succeed fine in earlier
    >> >> versions of R.
    >> > The tests "make check-devel" and "make check-all" are
    >> > documented to require the recommended packages, and will
    >> > fail without them.  On Windows, "make check" also needs
    >> > them, so this may be true on other systems as well.
    >> Thank you Duncan, for clarifying (above and later in the thread).
    >> Would it be hard to strive for
    >> 1)  'make check' should pass without-rec....
    >> 2)  'make check-devel' etc do require the recommended packages.
    >> That would be ideal I think - and correspond to the fact that
    >> we call the recommended packages 'recommended' only.

    > I think we could avoid errors in make check, but not warnings.  People
    > need to understand what the tests are testing, and recognize that some
    > warnings are ignorable.

    > To do this, we'd need to make sure that no examples in base packages
    > require the use of recommended packages.  Currently the failure happens
    > in capture.output, because it runs the glm example which needs MASS.
    > (The glm example is marked not to need MASS during testing, but the
    > capture.output example runs everything.)  

aah.. that's interesting in itself: Maybe  example() should also
get 'run.dontcheck' argument in addition to its  'run.dontrun'
and Rd2ex() a similar enhancement.... I'm looking into that.

    > Fixing that one causes the error to happen later.

"fascinating", as Kurt may say ..

    >> OTOH, if '1)' is too much work for us, we could add this as a
    >> 'wishlist' item  and wait for someone to send patches..

    > Alternatively, we could require the recommended packages for all tests.

    > Duncan Murdoch

which seems too extreme. If some people really only want to test
something like "the R base engine", they should be easily able
to do so, and I still think that 'make check' should do exactly that.
In the tests/Makefile.{common|in} this is even called 

One thing to consider might remove 'Examples' from the "all-basics"
and use 'Examples' only in a new make target between "basics"
and "devel".
But personally, I'd strive for fixing the few (I hope) cases in
the Examples we currently have.
Using the \dontcheck{..}  tag should really help there.

Martin Maechler

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