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Software Description

Software Description: Statistical Analysis Software

Platform: Windows, Mac, Linux, Unix
Cost: No charge (Open Source)


R is a programming language and software environment for data analysis and graphical representation. Functions and results of analysis are all stored as objects, allowing easy function modification and model building. R provides the language, tool, and environment in one convenient package. R is an implementation of the S programming language.  R was created at the University of Auckland, New Zealand and is now developed by the R Development Core Team.  R uses a command line interface.  The capabilities of R are extended through user-submitted packages. Several graphical user interfaces are available.   SAS integrated R within SAS/IML Studio.   R can also be called from SPSS.

License Information

R is part of the GNU Project.  R source code is freely available under the GNU General Public License.    

Obtain a Personal Copy of R

Pre-compiled binary versions are available for various operating systems such as Windows, Mac and Linux.  Under Windows Vista and Windows 7, launch install by right clicking on the install program and selecting "Run As Administrator".

To install Add-On Packages: 

  • Launch R
  • Select Packages, Install package(s)

Graphical User Interfaces (GUI)

Among the various GUI's available for R:

 R GUI for Data Mining

Use R on a server

R is available at VCU on a central Unix server called Koti.  
Koti may be used for analysis of sensitive data.

Patches & Updates

To update your R packages, use the update.packages() function.

 Manuals & Training

Books online via Safari 

VCU Libraries subscribes to Safari, an online database, that has books on all aspects of computers, programming and the web from such publishers as O'Reilly, Sams, New Riders and Adobe. It includes many books on R,  including:

  • Art of R Programming
  • R Cookbook (O'Reilly Cookbooks) by Paul Teetor
  • R in a Nutshell
  • R in Action: Data analysis and graphics with R
  • R for Medicine and Biology
  • 25 Recipes for Getting Started with R
  • Mathematical Statistics with Resampling and R

Access Safari database via the VCU Libraries subscription:    
Select Safari Books online
From, select the Academics popdown, then VCU Libraries
In Search Collections box on the lower left, go to Databases A-Z |
Select S
Select Safari Books online

Because the VCU Libraries has a subscription, there is no charge for current VCU faculty, staff and students to access Safari.  

Support & Consultation

The Department of Statistical Sciences and Operations Research provides statistical and programming consultation for using this product for teaching and research purposes.  To request a consultation appointment contact

If you need assistance with the installation, contact the IT Support Center.