Start the R Commander GUI (graphical user interface)
Commands to read, write, transform, and analyze data are entered using the menus in the
menu bar at the top of the Commander window. Most menu items lead to dialog boxes
requesting further specification. I suggest that you explore the menus to see
what is available.
Below the menu bar is an information field
displaying the name of the active data set; buttons for editing and displaying the active
data set in the R data editor; and check boxes for logging commands and attaching the active
data set to the R search path. The information field for the active data set is actually a
button that can be used to select the active data set from data frames in memory.
By default, commands are logged to the log/script window (the
large, initially empty window immediately below), and the active data set is attached to the
search path. Below the log window is an information field showing the active statistical model,
and a Submit button for re-executing commands in the log window. The information field
for the active model is a button that can be used to select the active model from among linear
and generalized linear model objects in memory.
Almost all commands require an active data set. When the Commander starts, there is no active
data set, as indicated in the data set information field. A data set becomes the active data set
when it is read into memory from an R package or imported from a text file, SPSS data set, or
Minitab data set. In addition, the active data set may be selected from among R data frames
resident in memory. You may therefore switch among data sets during a session.
Rcmdr dialogs (those in the Statistics -> Fit models menu)
produce linear or generalized
linear models. When a model is fit, it becomes the active model, as indicated in the information
field at the lower-left of the Commander window.
Items in the Models menu apply to the active model. Initially, there is no active model.
If there are several models in memory, you may select the active model from among them.
If command logging in turned on, R commands that are generated from the menus and dialog boxes are
entered into the log/script window in the Commander. You can edit these commands in the normal
manner and can also type new commands into the log/script window. The contents of the log
window can be saved during or at the end of the session, and a saved log can be loaded into the
To re-execute a command or set of commands, select the lines to be executed using
the mouse and press the Submit button at the lower-right of the Commander window
(or Control-R, for "run"). If no text is selected, the Submit button (or Control-R)
submits the line containing the text-insertion cursor.
Pressing Control-F brings up a find-text dialog box (which may also be accessed via
Edit -> Find) to search for text in the log/script window.
Right-clicking the mouse (clicking button 3 in a three-button mouse) in the log/script window brings up
a "context" menu with the Edit-menu items, plus a Submit item.
execute commands from the Commander window, you must ensure that the sequence of commands
is logical. For example, it makes no sense to fit a statistical model to a data set that has
not been read into memory. Commands generated by the Commander or executed from the log window
appear in the R session window with an "
Exit from the Commander via the File -> Exit menu or by closing the Commander window.
Customization and Configuration
Configuration files reside in the
etc subdirectory of the package.
Rcmdr menus may be customized by editing the file
Some functions (e.g.,
hist) that do not normally create visible printed output when executed
from the command prompt will do so --- unless prevented --- when executed from the
Commander log window. Such output
can be suppressed by listing the names of these functions in the
You can add R code to the package, e.g., for creating additional dialogs, by placing files with
.R in the
etc directory, also editing
Rcmdr-menus.txt to provide
additional menus, sub-menus, or menu-items. A demo addition is provided in the file
compareModels.demo. To activate the demo, rename this file to
and uncomment the corresponding menu line in
Rcmdr-menus.txt. Alternatively, you can edit
the source package and recompile it.
The following functions are provided to assist in writing dialogs:
logger. The following global
variables contain information about variables in the active data set:
for more information.
In addition, several features are controlled by run-time options, set via the
command. These options should be set before the package is loaded. If the options are unset, which is
the usual situation, defaults are used. Specify options as a list of name=value pairs. You can
set none, one, several, or all options. The available options are as follows:
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object]
Most options may also be set via the File -> Options menu, which will restart the Commander after options are set.
options(Rcmdr=list(log.font.size=12, contrasts=c("contr.Sum", "contr.poly")))