The master branch of this repository contains the canonical version of the buildpack for use by IQSS/VPAL-R. The upstream branch is virtualstaticvoid/heroku-buildpack-r.git#heroku-16-packrat.
To use this version, the buildpack URL is
The buildpack will detect your app makes use of R if it has a
run.R file in the root directory.
The buildpack requires you are using Packrat to lock down package dependencies. You must run
packrat::snapshot() before making your first push to Heroku. If you modify the snapshot by adding, removing, or changing a package, you must clear the Heroku build cache before redeploying (see Caching below).
If the R packages have binary dependencies, they can be specified by providing an
Aptfile in your repository's root that contains the Ubuntu package names to install.
For instance, Tidyverse packages need
libxml2-dev and RPostgreSQL needs
libpq-dev. Examine the log of a failed
git push heroku command for names of other Ubuntu/Debian dependencies your R packages might need.
You can run the R console application as follows:
$ heroku run R ...
q() to exit the console when you are finished. You can run the Rscript utility as follows:
$ heroku run Rscript ...
Note that the Heroku slug has an ephemeral file system and is effectively read-only, so any changes you make during the session will be discarded.
You can use the Heroku scheduler to schedule a recurring R process.
An example command for the scheduler, to run
prog.r, would be
R -f /app/prog.r --gui-none --no-save.
The buildpack uses R 3.6.0 by default, however it is possible to use a different version if required. This is done by providing a
.r-version file in the root directory, which contains the R version to use.
The following R versions are provide:
To reference a specific version of the buildpack, add the Git branch or tag name to the end of the build pack URL when creating or configuring your Heroku application.
branch_or_tag_name with the desired branch or tag name:
$ heroku create --stack heroku-18 \ --buildpack https://github.com/harvard-vpal/heroku-buildpack-r.git#branch_or_tag_name
The binaries used by the buildpack are hosted on AWS S3 at https://heroku-r-buildpack.s3.amazonaws.com.
See the heroku-buildpack-r-build repository for building the R binaries yourself.
The buildpack includes the following default process types:
bashin the chroot context, if needed for debugging.
run.Rto run Shiny in the chroot context
Rscript executables are available like any other executable, via the
heroku run command.
To improve the time it takes to deploy, the buildpack caches the R binaries, any additional binaries installed using the
Aptfile and the compiled package binaries. If you need to purge the cache, it is possible by using heroku-repo CLI plugin.
To install the plugin run:
heroku plugins:install heroku-repo
To purge the buildpack cache, run the following command from your application's source code directory:
heroku repo:purge_cache -a your-app-name
See the purge-cache documentation for more information.
This buildpack can be used in conjunction with other supported language stacks on Heroku by using multiple buildpacks. See Using Multiple Buildpacks for an App.
It is possible to override the default CRAN mirror used, by providing the URL via the
CRAN_MIRROR environment variable.
E.g. Override the URL by setting the variable as follows. Note: There is no trailing "slash" in the URL.
heroku config:set CRAN_MIRROR=https://cloud.r-project.org
Check the CRAN mirror status page to ensure the mirror is available.
Due to the size of the R runtime, the slug size on Heroku, without any additional packages or program code, is approximately 150Mb. If additional R packages are installed then the slug size will increase.
You can only use one dyno. Each dyno has >= 4 cores. The R shiny buildpack automatically launches as many R processes as cores in order to serve more requests concurrently. Load balancing across multiple dynos will cause unexpected failures as R session management requires sticky sessions which Heroku does not provide.
You may use (session affinity)[https://devcenter.heroku.com/articles/session-affinity] to load balance R sessions across multiple dynos if you are inside the Common Runtime, working with data which is not classified secure. However, dynos restart daily, which would invalidate any currently running sessions. You will experience the same failures as referenced in the previous caveat -- our suggestion is to stick with one dyno. You may increase the dyno "weight" to 2x or 4x if necessary. Please contact HMDC support (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you're running into any performance issues.
R apps timeout on the client side after 60 seconds of inactivity, meaning that if a user is not actively using the widgets displayed on the screen, the screen will turn grey in order to accomodate other traffic. You may extend this tiemout by following this guide from domino data labs
MIT License. Copyright (c) 2013 Chris Stefano. See MIT_LICENSE for details.
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