[R] Is it good practice to have a package depend on Rtools(for unziping of .7z and.rar files)? Crab legal?

Bert Gunter bgunter.4567 at gmail.com
Thu Mar 29 16:30:26 CEST 2018

r-package-devel is the right mailing list for your query, not here.


Bert Gunter

"The trouble with having an open mind is that people keep coming along
and sticking things into it."
-- Opus (aka Berkeley Breathed in his "Bloom County" comic strip )

On Thu, Mar 29, 2018 at 6:56 AM, Lucas Ferreira Mation
<lucasmation at gmail.com> wrote:
> I created this package,
> https://github.com/lucasmation/microdadosBrasil
> which we are preparing for Cran submission. The package facilitates
> downloading and reading most of the microdatasets (household surveys,
> Census, etc). For each dataset it:
> (a) downloads the data from  the data providers
> (b) "unzip" the necessary files
> (c) imports the data into R.
> For  (b), some of the datasets come in .7z and .rar format which ideally
> the package should unzip (or whatever the correct them for uncompacting
> these file types is) so that the underlying .txt or .csv files can be
> imported into R.
> Not being able to find a solution within R (R only deals with .zip files),
> we added a Rtools dependency, in order to use Rtools expanded
> unzipping capabilities on the .7z and .rar  files.
> Is adding a Rtools dependency a bad practice for an R package? Is it even
> allowed by cran? I mean, it changes requires the installation of a
> standalone software (Rtools), which does not seem very user-friendly.
> Is there any alternative for unzipping .rar and .7z files that only depends
> on R packages and works independently of the OS, etc?
> If the Rtools is a big problem, I could also revert to our initial strategy
> that did not support .7z and .rar "unzipping", requesting the user to
> manually unpack those files.
> regards
> Lucas
>         [[alternative HTML version deleted]]
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