Innovation R

Learn to Connect RStudio to GitHub in Under Five minutes

In Microsoft, we trust.

Since Microsoft’s acquisition of GitHub for $7.5 million USD, there’s been a mixed bag of emotions in regards to Microsoft’s access-to-information inside private repositories.

Some have pointed out GitHub’s acquisition was necessary as the service would eventually need to make changes to their pricing structure to keep afloat — Microsoft alleviates this.

Meanwhile, others are fleeing to GitLab and other repository services since they value a decentralized platform. The irony being GitLab currently uses Microsoft Azure.

So is this knee-jerk reaction even necessary? I see hackers licking their lips at all that data being hastily transferred by non-experts and  can cause a lot more problems for a company instead. There is absolutely value in a decentralized platform and GitLab and the like do provide self-hosted repositories. Be sure you know what you’re doing!

If you have chosen to stay with GitHub here’s how you can set up.

Start the timer!

Create a Github account, if you don’t already have one click here

1) Create a new repository on Github


2) Choose a repository name – you have the option to initialize the repository with a readme.txt or not. It is always good practice to have a readme file explaining your code so I strongly recommend you do!


3) Copy the address from the [Clone or download] button


4) Open Rstudio and create a new project and choose the last option ‘Version Control’


5) Paste the Github address you copied earlier and name your project


Bam, you are linked up just like that!

Troubleshoot: If you get an error and require to download Git, you can do so here and simply use the default installation, then restart R Studio.

Test Commits

Let’s create a new R script and name it ‘cd.’ I wrote an easy code (c <- 10+2) in cd and saved my file. Then, click on git button on the top right corner. Check the script name you want to push and click the commit button.


Write a commit message and click push button


You’ll be prompted to sign into your Github account, do so.


Now go back to Github and reload your page. Click the script and you will see your code.



It’s as simple as that!

Let us know your thoughts on Microsoft’s GitHub acquisition in the comments or tweet us @DataCritics

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