Monthly Archives: May 2018

Using RStudio and Git version control

lIt is fairly easy to link Github or Bitbucket with RStudio, in order to enable version control, or in order to work collectively on a data project, science article, or book. It can also be used to make your data or project publicly accessible (however, there is no guarantee that it will be accessible forever, and also it doesn’t get a DOI, so e.g. OSF might be a better alternative).

Github and Bitbucket are web-based filehosts that support the version control Git. Git allows you to track changes to files, to revert files to earlier stages, and to work on files in groups. This makes it especially important for work among programmers, data analysists, and also researchers. Github and Bitbucket store all the information on different versions of your project on their server, so that others can see exactly what others on the same projects worked on, or changed.

This post will explain to you how to set up Github and Bitbucket with RStudio in order to enable version control and storage in an external repository. In nerd-speak, it explains how to “push your commits to an external repo”. Note the main differences between Github and Bitbucket relevant to this post are that the former allows you to create a public repo free of charge, while the latter allows you to create a private repo free of charge. Choose one of both platforms (or both) so that it suits your needs.

I am not going to explain how to download, install, or set up Git on your computer. I expect that you did all that and now want to link it to RStudio.

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