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Setting/loading and extracting various options from/into the R environment

A package level alternative for options and getOptions, to prevent cluterring the space.

Main Features

  • load from files: ability to store all default options as a tab delimited OR comma delimited files
  • check options: if a option relates to a file path, automatically check if it exists
  • embeddable set OR retrieve multiple options as list
  • clean: print all or few options as a pretty table

Main functions

  • set_opts(): set options into a custom environment
  • get_opts(): retrieve options from a custom environment
  • load_opts(): Read a tab/comma delimited file using read_sheet() and load them using set_opts()
  • new_opts(): create a options manager (to be used in a R package etc…)
  • print.opts(): print options as a pretty table, used by get_opts()


Setting up some options

    name = "John",
    verbose = TRUE, 
    my_dir = "~/mypath")

Retrieving all options using get_opts()

name            value        
--------------  -------------
default_regex   (.*)         
my_conf_path    ~/flowr/conf 
my_dir          ~/mypath     
my_path         ~/flowr      
my_tool_exe     /usr/bin/ls  
name            John        
verbose         TRUE  

Retrieving a specific option


Loading several options from a conf file

conf = system.file("conf/params.conf", package = "params")

Nested options, re-use options as part of other options

  • This feature is based on logic-less templating using a R implementation of mustache.
  • Say we define two options first_name and last_name; to create full_name, either we could again use the actual values or first and last names or define full_name as {{{first_name}}} {{{last_name}}}
set_opts(first = "John", last = "Doe",
    full = "{{{first}}} {{{last}}}")
"John Doe"
  • both set_opts and load_opts, support auto-complete
  • this is especially useful in case of paths, and is really inspired by BASH environment variable system

Using params in your own package

Params creates a environment object and stores all parameters in that object. Thus multiple packages using params packages may be loaded each with a separate set of options.

Setup: One liner to to be included in a package !

myopts = new_opts()

The above object provides three functions to load, set and fetch params:

  • myopts$get()
  • myopts$set()
  • myopts$load()


## stable version from CRAN

## latest, development version

Here is a example conf file::

## ----------------------- p a r a m s     config ------------------------ ##
## the file by default, sits in the R pacakge
## --------------------------------------------------------------------- ##

## Following lines, as a tab delimited table, with two columns
## Always use load_conf(); after editing this file !

## options ending with path, exe or dir are checked for existence. file.exists
my_path ~/flowr
my_tool_exe /usr/bin/ls
my_dir  path/to/a/folder

## you can define nested options
## these are parsed line by line

my_conf_path    {{{my_path}}}/conf

## --- all options are parsed as chracter
default_regex   (.*)

Help topics

  • check_args
    Assert none of the arguemnts of a function are null.
  • kable
    Create tables in LaTeX, HTML, Markdown and reStructuredText
  • load_opts(get_opts, new_opts, params, print.opts, set_opts)
    Setting/loading and extracting various options into the environment
  • opts
    default opts
  • parse_opts
    Parse options to expand
  • read_sheet(write_sheet)
    Read/Write sheets (automatically detect the file type and work accordingly)


  • Depends: whisker
  • Imports: utils
  • Suggests: openxlsx, testthat