[R] False Virus detection with colorspace package?

John C Frain frainj at gmail.com
Tue Nov 8 00:33:56 CET 2011

After updating to version 2.14 and copying packages from my Version
2.13.2 library  I ran

update.packages(checkBuilt=TRUE,ask=FALSE) to update these packages.
This failed because AVG reported a virus in the "temporary" copy of
colorspace.dll created during the install and the update then failed
because it was unable to open this temporary file.  To continue I
deleted the colorspace packages and its reverse dependences and the
reverse dependencies of the reverse dependencies.  After deleting
these packages the update process then finished.

I would presume that the virus is probably a false detection.  However
when I virus check the version 2.13.2 library AVG does not find a
virus.  As far as I can determine the only difference between the two
packages is that they are built with different versions of R.  I would
intend to reinstall these packages when the problem has been solved.
I am sending a report to AVG. For the moment I can fall back to the
earlier version if necessary.

Has any one else detected a similar problem.

An extract of the diagnosis sent to AVG is below.

Best regards


AVG Free Version 2012.0.1869 Virus database 2092/4602 detects a virus
in the colorspace package in the R statistical system.  The zip file
containing the offending file can be downloaded from

or from any of the CRAN mirrors.

The message produced by AVG is


File name:   c:\.....\colourspace\libs\i386\colorspace.dll

Threat name: Virus found Win32/Heur

Detected on open


Is this a false positive?

John C Frain
Economics Department
Trinity College Dublin
Dublin 2
mailto:frainj at tcd.ie
mailto:frainj at gmail.com

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