[R] Using n+1 instances of R to utilise n processors on one machine - something like R with tabbed browsing?

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Sun Nov 16 07:54:22 CET 2008

This is what e.g. package snow does: it will also collect the results for 
you.  See also package pvapply.

On Sat, 15 Nov 2008, clair.crossupton at googlemail.com wrote:

> Dear R-help,
> Please forgive me if any of the following sounds naieve/confused, i've
> just got back from a mini-pub-crawl, slightly tipsy, and am feeling
> brave to ask a possibly silly question... also, not to shiny on the
> technical side of things.
> Problem - I need to text mine a collection of 10,000 plain text
> documents, all of which are sitting in a single folder. i don't have
> any money to buy a database package, and even if i did i have no idea
> how that would speed things up if i want to do all the processing in
> R
> Assumption - It is my understanding that R can only use one processor
> on a machine when handeling calculations. If you wanted to use 4
> processors, than you would have to open up 4 seperate instances of R
> and share the work between them eg. give each instance of R 25% of the
> documents you want processed
> Question - It is possible to have one instance of R to divide the
> workload, and then that instance opens up 4 other instances of R to do
> the processing?
> Or, is sometihng akin to tabbed browsing, where you have one main
> window and several tabs, each corresponding to a different instance of
> R?
> appologies if none of hte above made sense  :o)
> Clair xx
> O/S: Windows Vista
> R 2.8.0
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Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Professor of Applied Statistics,  http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/~ripley/
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272866 (PA)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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