Installing RODBC with Ubuntu/Debian amd64

Trying to install RODBC in Ubuntu with
failed throwing an error message
ODBC headers sql.h and sqlext.h not found

A glance at the r-help showed that it had to do with something called unixODBC – an ODBC driver manager.

The package was installed, but not the development package and thus not the headers which R complained about.

Again a not-so-obvious-for-the-newbee-Linux-Unix-Shell-goblish thing. The fix is
sudo aptitude install unixodbc-dev


Open Access .mdb Files with RODBC

Getting data into R can be done by reading colon separated files (.csv) via the read.table() function. It is also possible to access databases directly and send SQL queries directly from R to the database. This has some advantages: Using Sweave the queries get documented in the analysis report, variable formats are retained.

To install the RODBC package:

Open a database connection to an Microsoft Access database file, e.g. “MyDataBase.mdb” sitting in the Folder “C:\ MyPath\MyDataBase.mdb”:
channel <- odbcConnectAccess("C:/MyPath/MyDataBase")
note that the Windows backslashes “\” become slashes “/” in R and the extension “.mdb” is omitted.

Getting the database table “MyTable” into the R dataframe “R.Table”
R.Table <- sqlQuery( channel , paste ("select * from MyTable"))
MyTable can also be a sql query in the Access database.