Now that the sandbox system is up and running, it was time to add some things that I use. I installed Matlab rather painlessly using the CD, and now it was time to focus on the statistical package R, which is a free version of S-Plus.

R is made available by the R Project at no cost (I said it was free) and is distributed both as source code and as an rpm. As they have an rpm available for SUSE I went with that. For me, there were two dependencies that I had to fill (BLAS and Fortran) that I will cover now. If you have these installed already you can skip the next paragraph.

I had to search and finally found the two packages (which are available through novell somehow) on the mirror site I manually downloaded these RPMs to a local diectory and then added them to YAST. I fired up YAST, and chose Software on the left menu, then Installation Source on the right side. Once the Software Source Media window opened I clicked the add button and selected local directory. A dialog box opened, and I put the directory where I had downloaded the RPMs. I clicked OK and it complained that there was no listing but then added the RPMs to the list. I was then able to go to software management and add the two packages with no problems.
Now that dependencies were out of the way it was time to install R. The simplest way to get the package is to add the location to YAST. Once the Software Source Media window opens click the add button and select http. A dialog box opens, and put the address of the CRAN mirror (You can find them at CRAN, I prefer and then put bin/linux/suse/10.0 on the directory line. Now YAST should see the R-base package and be able to install it through the software management GUI. Again, if you do not have BLAS or the gcc-fortran installed YAST will not work, see above and install these packages first.

To get your R package manually, navigate to the Comprehensive R Archive Network (CRAN) and pick Linux in the “Download and install R” section of the page. This subdirectory is the listing of all of the packages for specific distributions. Pick SUSE and then at the next page pick your version (I am using 10.0). Next choose RPMS, i586 (or x64 if you are running a 64 bit machine) and then grab the latest RPM.

Either way you should now have the package and be ready to install it. I fired up YAST again, went to software management, and then selected the R-base package and it installed to /usr/bin/R with no problems!

Next stop… GMT!