RcppAPT v0.0.3


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'Rcpp' Interface to the APT Package Manager

The 'APT Package Management System' provides Debian and Debian-derived Linux systems with a powerful system to resolve package dependencies. This package offers access directly from R.


RcppAPT Build Status License CRAN Downloads Code Coverage

Rcpp Interface to APT Package Manager


Debian and its derivatives like Ubuntu utilize a powerful package managing backend / frontend combination in APT (A Packaging Tool). Accessible at the command-line via front-ends apt, apt-get, apt-cache, ... as well as numerous GUI variants, it is implemented using a library libapt-pkg. This small package provides R with access to this library via Rcpp.


We can query packages by regular expression:

R> library(RcppAPT)
R> getPackages("^r-base-.")

which returns a data frame with name, version (if installed) and section.

We can also check for installability of a given package or set of packages:

R> hasPackages(c("r-cran-rcpp", "r-cran-rcppapt"))
   r-cran-rcpp r-cran-rcppapt 
          TRUE          FALSE 

which shows that Rcpp is (of course) available, but this (very new) package is (unsurprisingly) not available pre-built.

Moreover, we can look at the package information of a given package. The buildDepends() function extracts just the build dependencies:

R> buildDepends("r-cran-rcppeigen")
[1] "debhelper"        "r-base-dev"       "cdbs"            
[4] "r-cran-rcpp"      "r-cran-matrix"    "r-cran-pkgkitten"

The showSrc() and dumpPackages() functions display even more information.

We can also look at reverse dependencies:

R> reverseDepends("r-cran-rcpp$")
               package  version
1  r-cran-surveillance         
2     r-cran-rquantlib   0.11.0
3      r-cran-reshape2         
4        r-cran-readxl         
5     r-cran-rcppeigen 0.11.0-1
6 r-cran-rcpparmadillo   0.11.0
7          r-cran-plyr         
8         r-cran-minqa   0.11.0


The package is still fairly small, and functionality is (currently) limited to the examples shown above. It builds reliably on the supported systems.

But libapt-pkg is pretty mature, and feature-rich, so this package acts mostly as a wrapper from R.


The package is on CRAN so a very standard


will do. Make sure you install the libapt-pkg-dev package first as it is a build-dependency.

Versions of the package may also be available via drat via:



Dirk Eddelbuettel


GPL (>= 2)

Functions in RcppAPT

Name Description
showSrc Display information for given packages
RcppAPT-package Rcpp Interface to the APT Package Manager
dumpPackages Display information for given packages
buildDepends Return Build-Depends for given packages
reverseDepends Return Reverse-Depends for given packages
hasPackages Test for Existence of Given Package
getPackages Retrieve Names of All Installable Packages
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Last month downloads


Type Package
Date 2016-12-07
SystemRequirements A Debian-based system with the libapt-pkg-dev package
License GPL (>= 2)
LinkingTo Rcpp
OS_type unix
RoxygenNote 5.0.1
NeedsCompilation yes
Packaged 2016-12-07 12:18:34.884238 UTC; edd
Repository CRAN
Date/Publication 2016-12-07 15:54:15

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